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I am a recent revert to Islam and was married three months ago to a Muslim man in Morocco. I live in USA. I was visiting the country and also visiting this man and his family to see if we were compatible. There were two witnesses and I had a wali but there was no marriage contract written and no mahr was paid and now I wonder about the validity of the marriage.

He swears we are married but I am having serious doubts. I don't want to be married anymore because I think it was done in haste but he says he will not divorce me. I am so confused and scared to death that I will have to live with this situation and never be able to be properly married in the future.

There was no civil ceremony and I can make no legal claims as a wife should with regards to financial support or anything. Am I married to him according to Islam? Have I committed zina since we were intimate after that?

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The pillars of marriage are three:

  1. The couple must be free from any legal prevention to their being able to marry one another, like a close relationship or fosterage.

  2. The woman must have the approval of her guardian.

  3. There must be an offer and acceptance.

The conditions of marriage are four:

  1. The presence of the couple

  2. Their approval

  3. The presence of the woman’s guardian

  4. Two male, Muslim witnesses


So, if those conditions were met, so, you are married. Then, you have to insist to get a marriage contract in Morocco or USA so that you can claim your rights. Then you can ask him for divorce for the legitimate reason you see. Or ask for a legal divorce according to laws.

Source:http://en.islamtoday.net/node/1267

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Well if the witnesses in Morocco were official ones you should have been signing a contract. And in this contract the witnesses should have written down the kind of mahr or an amount or value of it. Because without it they won't ask you to sign the contract. On the other hand who was your wali (guardian)? As a country which follow the Maliki school of fiqh a marriage without a wali would be invalid!

So what is possible is that your "husband" pretended to pay a mahr later. Normally the witnesses give the money etc. to the wife to verify it before writing it down on the contract.

I also have to mention that mahr can be something without a material value. I'm not sure if Moroccan witnesses will accept a surah of Qur'an as mahr but I heard of people in Europe who married with such a mahr.

In any case I would suggest you ask for your copy of this Akd-e-Nikah and to read or translate it so you can read what is written down on it and claim your rights from your husband!

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Depends.

Approval(Self)

Did they have your approval? It is explicitly asked and is a requirement for Nikkah1 . Something like:

Do you accept person xyz as your husband?

It is asked 3 times. And you have to answer three times, yes/no.

It is explicitly asked. Were you asked?

(Note: As a custom its sometimes asked three times. And you have to answer three times)

Mehr

Other than this, there is the matter of Haq-Mehr. If Mehr isn't paid, that doesn't necessarily mean the marriage is illegal. The husband is bound to pay the wife Haq-Mehr. It should be at the time of Nikkah Ceremony but isn't necessary. Mehr can be paid later. Also the wife can forgive the Mehr or reduce its amount.

Approval(Guardian)

Did you have the approval of gurardian(wali)?

Note: There are four main Schools of Jurisprudence. Under the Hanfi School the approval of guardian is not necessary.

I believe this answers the first part of your question.


If the answer to the above question is NO in your case, meaning that Nikkah/Marriage didn't happen. Don't worry. Allah-Subhanau-Wa-Ta'Aalah is merciful. Read this. (Surah In'aam[6]: Ayaat 54) I will quote the translation here:

And when those come to you who believe in Our verses, say, "Peace be upon you. Your Lord has decreed upon Himself mercy: that any of you who does wrong out of ignorance and then repents after that and corrects himself - indeed, He is Forgiving and Merciful."

And read this.


1Nikkah is what binds two people in marriage.

  • Do you have a reference for "you have to answer three times"? As far as I understand, that's just a common custom, not an actual Islamic requirement. I'm not questioning the explicitly-asking-and-answering part, it's just the "three times" bit I don't know about. – goldPseudo Jul 31 '15 at 16:40
  • You are right, its not necessary. Its a custom. And one of the main reason they ask three times is so that the witnesses can clearly hear the answer i.e I accept/I don't. And also so that 'the person being married' should know and acknowledge their own decision. If you would like to read further: darululoom-deoband.com/english/books/nikah.htm ThankYou. – Xz_awan Jul 31 '15 at 19:47

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