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If a young woman gets married outside family, does she has to observe full hijab in front of her father-in-law. Is he Mahram? That would mean she has to hide her face from her father-in-Law all times and avoid any conversation or contact with him.

Is this true?. If yes, wouldn't it cause considerable difficulties in the modern family where joint family system is so common?

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المحرم بالمصاهرة بالنسبة لزوجة الأب هو ابنه من غيرها ، وبالنسبة لزوجة الابن هو أبوه ، وبالنسبة لأم الزوجة هو الزوج ، وقد ذكر الله تعالى في آية سورة النور : ( ولا يبدين زينتهن إلا لبعولتهن أو آبائهن أو آباء بعولتهن أو أبنائهن أو أبناء بعولتهن .. ) وآباء بعولتهن وأبناء بعولتهن من محارم المرأة بالمصاهرة ، وقد ذكرهم الله تعالى مع آبائهن وأبنائهن وساواهم جميعاً في حق إبداء الزينة لهم

which means no, her father in law is a "Mehrem" .. in Quran [24:31] Allah SWT says:

" ... not expose their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands' fathers, their sons, their husbands' sons, their brothers, their brothers' sons, ..."

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The Father-In-Law is Mahram for the whole life. Even if she was divorced, or widowed, Her father-in-law will remain her Mahram.

According to this verse in Surat Al-Nur: 24:31

And tell the believing women to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment except that which [necessarily] appears thereof and to wrap [a portion of] their headcovers over their chests and not expose their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands' fathers, their sons, their husbands' sons, their brothers, their brothers' sons, their sisters' sons, their women, that which their right hands possess, or those male attendants having no physical desire, or children who are not yet aware of the private aspects of women. And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment. And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.

In this fatwa, you can see that even after her husband's death or divorce her father-in-law remains a mahram.

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