Islamic Prenuptial Agreement: Women’s Rights

Women’s Rights in the Islamic Prenuptial Agreement: Use Them or Lose Them
 

Rabia Mills

And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect. [Qur’an 30:21 Yusuf Ali translation]

A great deal of heartache can be avoided by a woman in her marriage if she, as the bride-to-be, agrees to and signs a carefully considered Prenuptial Agreement (also known as a Marriage Contract or Domestic Contract) that guards her rights before entering into wedlock. This is the crucial first step which will guarantee her rights throughout her marriage, because if problems should arise later on in the marriage, ignorance of the law will not be allowed as an excuse for the woman’s failure to secure her rights. The Prenuptial Agreement can also guarantee a woman many of her Islamic rights, which can be enforceable by law(1) even if she lives in a western country. Arguably women’s Islamic rights are more fair and equitable than the secular woman’s rights in the west, so it makes sense to know just what her Islamic rights are and how they can be relinquished should she neglect to claim them before marriage.(2) A great deal of misinformation abounds concerning the Prenuptial Agreement and women’s Islamic rights. Insha’Allah, this article will set the record straight, as much as possible, about what her Islamic rights are, and how to protect them with a carefully considered Prenuptial Agreement.

For the most part, we will address the western Muslim woman who is not only required to obey the Shar’iah, but who must also comply with the secular laws of her own country. However, we will touch briefly upon a few major issues which affect women living in Eastern countries where polygyny (3) and other such Muslim laws are extant. Because of the diversity of laws from country to country, we can only discuss the Muslim woman’s rights in a general as opposed to specific fashion.

To be enforceable by law, a Prenuptial Agreement must also comply with the laws of the country (as distinct from the Islamic Law of the Shar’iah) in which it is drawn up and signed. This will guarantee that the agreement will be legally binding on both the husband and the wife, and should problems should later arise, the spouse will have protection under the law of his or her own country. It is therefore advisable for the couple to have at least a rudimentary understanding of the laws of their own respective countries in which they live.

Ideally it would be more advantageous for the couple to consult both a legal specialist in their own particular country and also a specialist in Islamic Law to help draw up their contract. We would suggest that the Prenuptial Agreement or Marriage Contract be drawn up by a religious leader in your community (i.e. the Imam of your local mosque might be able to help) and then checked over by each of the bride and groom’s respective lawyers. Muslim lawyers — if available – would be preferable.
The Prenuptial Agreement – points to consider in your marriage contract

It is impossible in an article of this nature to cover all of the possible inclusions which could conceivably go into the Prenuptial Agreement, so we will focus mainly on those points which have a bearing on protecting a Muslim woman’s Islamic rights.

(a) Polygyny

If a woman does not feel that she could allow her husband to marry more than one woman at the same time, then Islam allows her the right to refuse him permission to do this at the outset of their marriage, however, she must indicate this preference in the Prenuptial Agreement or she will forfeit this right under the Islamic Law. If she is uncertain as to whether or not she will be opposed to her husband marrying a second wife later on, then she could include that in the agreement and thus make it binding upon her husband that he must consult her at that time and that he must then abide by her wishes. To say nothing, however, could possibly invite more pain than gain as far as her desires are concerned.

In the West, polygamy (4) is illegal. Even so, the woman may still request that her husband not marry a second wife, and put this in the contract. This sort of request would be considered spurious in the Prenuptial Contract because men in the west are already forbidden polygyny. Nonetheless it might still prove to be a useful addition to the contract at this time because later on the couple might possibly move to a country where polygyny is legal.

Although polygyny is illegal in Canada, if a person marries more than one wife anyway, then the second wife is cut off from access to her legal rights as a wife completely (i.e. inheritance, mahr, alimony, child custody, recognition as being a wife, etc.) because the second marriage is not legally recognized whatsoever by Canadian law authorities. Therefore she will not be treated equally under Canadian law to the first wife, who could easily go to a recognized legal authority to enforce her marital rights. The second wife will have no legal recourse whatsoever from Canadian law. So this is a strong argument against Muslims marrying a second wife in a country like Canada which will neither recognize nor enforce her Islamic legal rights when it comes to polygyny. Interestingly enough, it appears that the Canadian government is not entirely opposed to polygyny when it comes to immigrants. If the husband and his wives have already been married off of Canadian soil and should they immigrate to Canada, then the extra wives will be accorded equal protection under Canadian law as the first wife.

In any case, it would be a good idea to include a clause agreeing that the marriage will not be polygynous, if this is BOTH their preferences, for clarification between the two spouses and the Muslim community. It has already been mentioned that there is always the possibility that the couple could someday live in some other country that does recognize polygyny. So the couple may want to be clear on this point.

(b) Mahr

This is the dower, or gift from the groom to the bride, of either a fixed financial amount or even a property amount and it is usually given immediately at the time of the marriage. However, either some of it or all of it may be deferred until a later time where it would become payable to the wife either upon the death or divorce of her husband. This is her Islamic right. Therefore the details of its payment should be set out very clearly in the Prenuptial Agreement for this right to be accorded to the western Muslim woman. (i.e. that a certain portion of the dower will be paid at once or within a stated period, and the remainder upon the dissolution of the contract by either death or divorce.) For example, the bride could settle an appropriate amount of dower to cover the demands of life after either a divorce or the husband’s death, or she could arrange for an annuity, or a fixed monthly amount payable to her upon the occurrence of either of those two events, so long as the Canadian rule against perpetuities is not contravened. There doesn’t appear to be anything in Islamic law that prohibits a wife from looking after her own interests in this way in Canada.

In the U.S.A., however, Prenuptial agreements which “facilitate divorce or separation by providing for a settlement only in the event of such an occurrence are void as against public policy.” This appears to mean that according U.S. law, a woman cannot claim her dower in the event of divorce, even though she had agreed to this in her Prenuptial Agreement. So ladies, be forewarned about this issue if you happen to live in the U.S.A. [for more information click here ].

(c) Divorce

In Islam, divorce is permitted when serious differences arise which cannot be resolved through reconciliation. However, it has to be the last resort, for the Prophet p.b.u.h. has described divorce as the most detestable of all lawful things in the sight of God. Now divorce is probably the last thing in the world that a couple would want to consider when negotiating their Prenuptial Agreement, but since Islamic divorce law is far more reasonable and equitable than Western divorce law, it would be wise to commit to the Shar’iah in your Prenuptial Agreement and in the early stages of marriage. Furthermore, this is the time when a woman may claim many of her Islamic rights.

There is a misguided notion both among western nations and even among Muslims themselves that under Muslim law a woman will get nothing from her husband towards her maintenance and living expenses beyond her probationary period of Iddat. This is a very simplistic notion and is clearly misleading.

In Islam the husband may unilaterally divorce his wife at any time, without specifying any reason, and a woman may do the same as long as she acquires this right when contracting her marriage. She can do this by negotiating and demanding that the prospective husband delegate to herself (or her nominated agent) the right to divorce herself at any time without assigning any reason.(5) It should be borne in mind that the procedure relating to the pronouncement of divorce can vary depending upon which school of law is followed by the husband and wife.(6) The prospective wife can also have the husband’s right to divorce her curtailed in many other ways – all by demanding and having the required legal conditions included in the marriage contract – and these conditions would be just as enforceable in a court of law as any conditions of a civil contract.

In fact, the modus operandi, even in a so-called bilateral marital breakdown situation (i.e., where both the husband and the wife mutually agree to divorce) is always for one of the two spouses to take the initiative to call the marriage off. So, in reality, marriage breakdown situations almost always entail unilateral decisions and motivations. Therefore, given that there is often an unavoidable, unilateral dimension in initiating divorce proceedings, one could argue that to let either of the two spouses have the unilateral right to divorce the other will save both of them from endless argumentation and bickering that could ultimately lead them to very expensive and emotionally charged court litigation.

Currently, if you live in Canada, the couple must first legally separate for a period of one year before divorce will be granted. It is a very complicated process and each spouse is advised to retain his or her own lawyer. At the moment, a Canadian Muslim couple cannot obtain a divorce in Canada according to Muslim Law. However, there are things which can be done to minimize the trauma and legal expense as long as BOTH the husband and wife are willing to compromise. Moreover, it would be very useful if they both had agreed to and signed a Prenuptial Agreement which had set out various prearranged issues such as child custody, maintenance, etc. and so if both the husband and the wife were willing to abide by this agreement, then the divorce could actually proceed quite smoothly.

(d) Financial Independence

According to Muslim Family Law, the responsibility for the wife’s maintenance (nafqa) always remains with the husband. The wife has no corresponding obligation to support her husband. The Muslim law principle which has been jealously guarded and enforced by Muslim law courts is that a woman’s property is hers alone. Period. Consequently, any property which a Muslim wife contributes towards the ‘family’s assets’ (i.e. all the property accumulated during the marriage) remains hers alone and is not subject to division or sharing by the husband in the event of a marriage breakdown (unless otherwise agreed upon between the husband and wife). In other words, under the Muslim Law, her ‘Net Family Property,’ remains hers alone and with no corresponding obligation to share with her husband (unless both husband and wife have agreed to share). This is not the case in Ontario law. So to ensure that a woman’s Islamic rights are protected in Canada, particularly with respect to the matrimonial home provision of the Ontario Law, it is suggested that both the husband and wife consult a specialist (i.e. lawyer who specializes in Ontario Family Law if they happen to live in Ontario) so as to explore with this lawyer the legal possibilities of accommodating the couple’s wishes, as much as possible, by finding ways and means to legally circumvent the (Ontario) law with regards to the obligatory special equal sharing of the matrimonial home provision.(7)

It appears that in the U.S.A., the Prenuptial Agreement can successfully redefine each spouse’s property as either separate property or community property, so the wife can specify her financial independence and ownership of property at this time.

(e) Education and Employment

Muslim women may restate their God-given Islamic rights to education and independence to work (employment, business, professions, etc.) in the Prenuptial agreement at this time which could be used beneficially both in Muslim as well as non-Muslim countries. Women in the west have already been accorded these rights by law, although in practise the husband may or may not approve of a wife either working or getting a higher education. So it would be prudent for both the husband and the wife, either in the West or the East, to be clear on this issue so as to prevent discord and unhappiness in the marriage.

The Prenuptial Agreement may also provide for religious education and upbringing of the children in accordance with Islamic Law and traditions.

Conclusion

The Prenuptial Agreement can be likened to an ‘insurance policy’ for both Western and Eastern Muslim couples; and for the Muslim woman who wishes to adhere to the principles of Islam, she would be well advised to carefully consider her options. The couple may not necessarily consider themselves to be very religious in practice at the present time, but this could change many years down the road because one simply cannot know one’s future. So it would be a good idea to cover all your bases as it were when considering your Prenuptial Agreement.

Whether you are a woman living in an Eastern Muslim country, or a woman living in a Western secular country, a carefully considered Prenuptial Agreement will prove to be an important asset to your marriage because (and most couples don’t know this) the standard Marital Contracts that Mosques use, often do not claim those rights for women that are hers and these could be lost if not agreed upon in her Prenuptial Agreement. Particularly for women who live in Eastern Muslim countries, you cannot assume that because your country is governed for the most part by Muslim Law that your Islamic rights will be specified in this standard contract or that your rights will be protected if need be by your country’s law. This may not be the case.

The reason why the importance and the practical need for a Prenuptial Contract seems to be ignored by such a large segment of the Muslim population is simply beyond comprehension. This lack of appreciation for the need for a Prenuptial Agreement seems to become even more appalling if one, as a Muslim, would recognize the fact that the Muslim marriage (Nikah/aqd) is itself a civil contract. It contains the basic ingredients of a regular everyday civil contract! The whole matrimonial relationship is based upon mutual agreement and consent of both the husband and the wife. From this point of view then, whoever said “a marriage contract is like is like a blank cheque on a joint account containing almost unlimited funds” really knew what he was talking about. Just as either the husband or the wife may decide to increase or decrease the funds held in their joint account, so too can they add any number of mutual rights and obligations into their Marriage/Prenuptial Contract. Nothing is carved in stone – everything can be changed, altered and amended. All that is required is a certain amount of good will and a sincere desire to live happily ever after.

Among His signs is [the fact] that He has created spouses for you from among yourselves so that you may console yourselves with them. He has planted affection and mercy between you; in that are signs for people who think things over. [Qur’an 30:21 T.B. Irving Translation]

——————————————————————————–

1. As long as they do not contravene the laws of the country in which the contract was drawn up.

2. Even in a secular western sense, the Prenuptial Agreement is considered a useful tool because it imposes clear obligations and duties on the spouse, and this in turn can lead to less conflict and friction and can also cultivate peace and harmony within the marriage.

3. Polygyny = polygamy in which a man has more than one wife at the same time.

4. Polygamy = having more than one wife or husband at the same time.

5. In other words, a wife may acquire from her husband the authorization to divorce herself from him at any time without assigning any reason. This is called delegation of authority/authorization by the husband to the wife, leaving it as her option to do what she likes, known as mashiat.

6. For example and without going into great detail, Imam Abu Hanifah is of the opinion that a divorce cannot be declared without a good reason. This means that as long as the marriage has no problems of compatibility, etc. divorce cannot be given. Imam Abu Hanifah is also of the opinion that the thrice repeated pronouncements of divorce cannot be made all at once. This means that there must be a gap of one menstrual period between each pronouncement of divorce despite his acknowledgement that even under these circumstances, the divorce will still be technically enforceable. This opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah is a minority opinion and as such does not enjoy the status of a generally accepted legal opinion (fatwa). If the husband and wife prefer to follow Abu Hanifah’s minority opinion, then they are free to insert a clause to this effect in the Prenuptial Agreement.

7. This matrimonial home provision in Ontario seems to be so high handed in imposing its regime that one could probably successfully challenge its constitutionality on the grounds that it is against the Right to Freedom of Religion which is guaranteed by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

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7 Responses to “Islamic Prenuptial Agreement: Women’s Rights”

  1. This is very interesting information. I was not aware of how complex the prenuptual agreement was. Thanks for explaining it.

  2. ZawajaRaqeeb Says:

    As Salaamu Alaikun, insha’Allah this blog reaches all in the best of health and strongest of iman. I guess the biggest question would be how can a woman forbid her husband what Allah t’ala has already made halal for him by denying him the right to marry a second wife? It would be more fitting if a sister expressed her feelings on polygamy prior to the nikkah if this is a possiblity, but for the statement to be made, ” then Islam allows her the right to refuse him permission to do this at the outset of their marriage” because islamically, this is incorrect. Allah subhana wa t’ala says in the Holy Quran in surah Nisa ayat 3: “If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with them, then only one, or that which your right hand possess. That will be more suitable, to prevent you from doing injustice.” No where in there does it say that the husband must seek or have his wife’s permission to marry two or three or four because Allah t’ala has already given him that right. Now in the essence of being just to his wives, the husband has been told by Allah if he fears he may not be able to be just, then he should choose one or his right hand possession, but that is still a matter or rights being given to the husband BY ALLAH and a decision to be made by the husband between he and his Lord, and has nothing to do with the wife granting permission or not. Having had personal experience with polygany, it is my belief that it gets its bad reputation because of the application of the right that Allah t’ala has given to the male to the point where lies, deception and blatant injustice causes fitnah to creep into the homes of the “would be” believers, thus poisoning the very reason why polygany was even granted in the first place, but that is a human element, not a defect in the policy. Marriage nowadays is being entered into too lightly with less thought and more nafs and muslims are forgetting the examples of the Prophet (saws) being that every wife he took after his beloved Khadijah (ra) was done for a specific purpose (protect the widow and orphans, joining the tribes, etc) not just looks and right now nafs. Going back to the basics of marriage with respect to this Deen Al Islam and learning/following the examples of the Prophets is a giant step towards healing our families and teaching our children according to the Sirah of the Prophet (saws) how to conduct themselves for future generations, insha’Allah. May Allah have mercy on us, forgive us our sins and keep our feet firmly planted on the path to Jennah letting us not be led astray. AMEEN.

  3. HijabiApprentice Says:

    Asalaamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuhu,

    Jazak Allah kheir for this post. Unfortunately it is all too common that Muslimahs (especially converted Muslimahs) do not know their rights or the value of the written marriage contract and prenuptial agreement. Again, thank you for this helpful information.

    ma’a salaamah,

    ha

  4. Assalaam ‘laykum!
    Welome to Muslim Marraiges!
    Jazkaillah Khayr for your words…
    Yes sis Hijabi Apprentice, its a shame that many Muslimah’s are unaware of their rights, insha ALLAH , I hope to bring their rights to their knowledge 😉
    Sis ZawjaRaqeeb, thre are many sisters out there (and brohers) who share your opinion. But I must help you in this mater, and bring to your attention what Islam says in this matter…

    Question
    Scholars of Islam, As-Salamu `Alaykum wa Rahamtu Allah wa Barakatuh. I’d like to know whether it’s permissible for a woman to add to the marriage contract a condition that her husband must not marry another woman?

    Answer
    Wa`alykum As-Salamu Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

    In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

    All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

    Sister in Islam, thanks for forwarding your question to us. We really appreciate it, for it reflects your keenness on keeping abreast of the Islamic teachings and ethics. May Allah help you, and us all, lead a righteous life!

    As for your question, it’s a controversial issue among Muslim scholars. But, the majority of them hold the view that a woman has the right to add such a condition to the marriage contract and it’ll be binding upon the man. Like all other valid contracts, violation of a sound condition may nullify the marriage contract.

    For more details on this thorny issue, we’d like to cite for you the following

    “There is a difference of opinion among the scholars concerning the validity of conditions of this nature.

    Conditions of contracts are two types: 1) those imposed directly by the Shari`ah and 2) those drawn up by one or more of the parties. When any contract is entered into, the first type of conditions are covered automatically even if they are not stated in the contract.

    Understood Conditions Based on what is Customary:

    It is a general principle in Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) that customs can take the status of law. It becomes understood that people are going to behave in a certain fashion. Since that is understood, one party has the right to ask it of the other even if it is not stated in the contract. In the area of marriage, there are some stipulations that are known by custom. These do not have to be mentioned in the contract to be considered binding. However, there are some strict conditions that must be met before a customary act is considered something equivalent to a legal stipulation. These conditions are as follows:

    1. The customary practice must not contradict anything expressly laid down by the Shari`ah. For example, it is a custom in some parts of the world for the woman to pay dowry. Neither party has the right to demand of the other the fulfillment of such custom, for it’s not valid; it contravenes the teachings of Shari`ah.

    2. The customary act must be common, well-known and universal and not something practiced only by some portions of the population.

    3. The custom must have been in existence and known before the marriage contract took place.

    Unacceptable Conditions:

    Any condition, which contradicts, compromises or nullifies the main goals and purposes of the marriage contract itself is rejected and, even if stated, is of no legal consequence. For example, conditions that state that the woman receives no dowry or that the husband does not have to support her or that they will not consummate the marriage are all null and void and of no effect whatsoever.

    Sound and Acceptable Conditions:

    Such conditions must be stipulated and agreed upon at or before the time of the offer/acceptance. Even those scholars who accept such stipulations do not accept them if they are made after the offer/acceptance. There are two types of sound and acceptable conditions:

    1. Those inserted in the contract even if they are not stated. This includes conditions known from the Shari`ah as well as those known from custom as discussed previously. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “The conditions you have the most duty to fulfill are those by which you have made marital relations lawful.” (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)

    Many scholars understand this Hadith to be referring to these kinds of conditions that are covered by the Shari`ah in the first place. This is the view of the Shafi`i school. They do no allow any additional stipulations to be added to the marriage contract.

    2. Those conditions which are not covered by the essential nature of the contract but which are agreed upon by the contracting parties. These are the stipulations that do not contradict the general goals of the contract, do not bring harm to anyone and they apply to things that are permissible and within the right of the person to agree – that is something that does not go against the Shari`ah. They are laid out in the beginning to avoid any conflict or hardship in the future.

    In General, Muslims Must Fulfill Their Agreements:

    Generally speaking, Muslims must comply with any agreements that they make, as long as such agreements do not involve anything unlawful. Allah says about the believers: “… And those who fulfill their pacts when they make one…” (Al-Baqarah: 177)“O you who believe fulfill your contracts…” (Al-Ma’idah: 1)

    The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “Muslims are bound by their stipulations.” (Abu Dawud & Al-Hakim)

    During the time of `Umar ibn Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, a man married a woman upon the condition that he would not move her from his house. The time came when he wanted to move her. They took their dispute to `Umar who said: “She has the right to her stipulation.” The man said, “In that case, we will certainly end the marriage.” He said, “The rights are broken off due to the stipulations.” This is the view maintained by many of the Companions, their successors and scholars including Sa`d ibn Abi Waqqas, Mu`awiyah, `Amr ibn Al-`Aas, Shurayh, `Umar ibn `Abdul-`Aziz, Tawus, Al-Awza`I, and Ishaq.

    There is another opinion which says that external stipulations – those not covered by the nature of the contract itself – carry no weight and need not be met. This is the opinion of Abu Hanifah, Ash-Shafi`i, Malik, Az-Zuhri, Qatada, Al-Laith, Ath-Thauri, Ibn Al-Mundhir and has been narrated from `Ali.

    The Proofs of the Invalidity of Alien Conditions:

    In support of their position that such conditions are neither valid nor binding, the scholars quote the Prophet’s Hadiths: “Every stipulation which is not in the Book of Allah is void even if it be one hundred stipulations.” (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)”Muslims are bound by their stipulations except for a stipulation that makes the unlawful lawful or makes the lawful unlawful.”

    However, the latter version of the Hadith is weak and cannot be used as evidence. As for the hadith mentioned earlier that “The conditions you have the most duty to fulfill are those by which you have made marital relations lawful.”, they claim that this only applies to the conditions which are essential parts of the nature of the contract itself.

    Response to Those Arguments:

    The scholars who permit such stipulations in the marriage contract have responded to the above argumentation. As for the Hadith “Every stipulations which is not in the Book of Allah…”, they say that for a woman’s Wali (guardian) to make some conditions to her advantage is something permissible and does not go against the Book of Allah.

    Actually, such conditions do not violate the Book of Allah and do not make anything forbidden permissible, etc. They simply give the woman the right to annul the marriage if the condition is not met.

    Also, there remains no real meaning to the Hadith “The conditions you have the most duty to fulfill…” if one says that it only applies to conditions that are already in force due to the nature of the contract anyway.

    The Crux of this Difference of Opinion:

    This discussion boils down to the understanding of two seemingly contradictory Hadiths:

    “Every stipulation which is not in the Book of Allah is void even if it be one hundred stipulations.” (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)

    “The conditions you have the most duty to fulfill are those by which you have made marital relations lawful.” (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)

    It seems clear from the second Hadith, along with the Fatwa of `Umar mentioned earlier, that there is a room for adding stipulations to a marriage contract. It also seems clear from the first Hadith that there are limits on what can be stipulated. Specifically, any stipulations which go against the basic goals and principles of the marriage contract are not allowed and, if stated, null and void. Thus, the only remaining problem is understanding exactly how this principle applies in practical situations.

    For those scholars who don’t accept such external stipulations at all, they consider such stipulations as having no effect at all, no binding power, and they don’t affect the validity of the underlying contract. For those who accept them, they give the woman the option to annul the marriage upon her request if the condition is violated.”

    Excerpted, with slight modifications, from: http://www.java-man.com/Pages/Marriage/Marriage05.html

    Question
    If a wife stipulates in her marriage contract that, “in husbands consideration of polygyny, husband must discuss the matter with wife first” and she and her husband only discuss polygyny in terms of the future and in general terms, would it be considered a breech or violation of the marriage contract if the husband actively seeks a second wife without the wife’s knowledge?

    Answer

    In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

    All thanks and praise are due to Allah and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

    Dear questioner! Thanks for your good question and your apparent interest in understanding the teachings of Islam.

    In the first place, it should be noted that Muslims are always commanded to abide by their stipulations. Highlighting this fact, the first verse of Surat Al-Ma’idah reads: “O ye who believe! Fulfil your undertakings.” (Al-Ma’idah: 1)

    Coming to the question in point, we would like to cite for you the following fatwa issued by the prominent Muslim scholar Dr. Taha Jabir Al-`Alawani, president of the Graduate School of Islamic and Social Sciences and president of the Fiqh Council of North America:

    “When a Muslim makes a commitment in the marriage contract that he will not marry another woman unless after seeking his wife’s consent, he must fulfill this commitment because the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “ Believers are to abide by their stipulations.” Once a person makes such a commitment, he has no right to go around seeking a second wife without his wife’s knowledge and permission because he has agreed to the terms of the contract.”

    And Allah knows best!
    Sorry for the delay in replying…
    Peace!

  5. Does someone have a concrete example of what a marriage contract should look like? In addition, I also agree that you can not forbid what Allah suphana wa tala makes lawful (more than one wife) but you can discuss this beforehand, and you can put it in the “right to divorce” section or “must discuss before he marries section” of a contract.

  6. asmakarif Says:

    Try: “Your Islamic Marriage Contract” by Ustadha Hedaya Hartford and Sidi Ashraf Muneeb.

    http://www.thetraditionalpath.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=255

  7. […] (also spelt Mahr and Mehr) is a sum of money that the man agrees to pay the woman in a Muslim marriage contract. The idea is to provide some financial security for the wife. Often, this amount is not paid right […]

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