Wednesday, July 17, 2024
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Khula signed under pressure

Fatwaa ID: 2365

As-Salam o Alaikum, I wanted to request an answer/fatwa. A khula was signed under force and pressure by the husband. He did not want to sign nor separate. Did so under obligation and coercion. No gifts were given back by the wife nor any mahr was taken. Is the khula valid or is the nikkah still valid? Agreement and consent were both not present by the husband’s side. Jazakallahu khairan

As-Salam O Alaikum,

I sent legal divorce papers with the intention of obtaining khula (through USA legal system) to my husband asking for a divorce stating that I want to separate due to differences. No other reasoning was given. My husband did not want to separate and did not want to sign. Unfortunately, under pressure and through force from my father he was forced into signing the papers. I did not give any compensation for the divorce nor did I exchange any gifts or mahr to receive the divorce. The divorce decree says it was signed with full consent, but that is clearly untrue. I also did not complete any iddah. Now, we want to reconcile and would like to know if the khula is valid or if the nikkah is still valid.

Jazakallahu Khairan

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaahi wa-barakaatuh.

We take note of the details of your query along with the clarification. We wish to firstly highlight that it is important to provide full details from the onset. Not mentioning relevant details may result in a non-applicable answer. Furthermore, what you may have perceived a situation to be may not be the case in reality.

Nevertheless, your case is not that of a khula’. Your situation is rather that of a civil divorce.

A khula’ refers to the wife requesting the husband for divorce in lieu of a monetary or material amount that she will pay him, as mutually agreed by both sides. This can also be referred to as her buying her divorce from her husband. The husband’s acceptance is necessary for the validity of the khula’. If he does not accept, then the khula’ will not take place and she will remain his wife.

As far as a civil or court divorce is concerned, it does not constitute an Islamic divorce (talaaq) by default, irrespective of whether it is initiated by the husband or the wife. The judge presides over the rulings and implications of a civil divorce. He does not have jurisdiction over a Shar’ee divorce (talaaq) and neither is that his mandate. If the husband signed the civil divorce documents and also intended a Shar’ee talaaq, then only will talaaq take place. If he did not intend talaaq while signing the documents or did not utter any words of talaaq, then talaaq will not take place even if the husband initiated the divorce proceedings. The nikaah will remain valid despite the legal divorce decree. For talaaq to be effective, the husband must issue a talaaq to his wife, verbally or in writing.

In the enquired situation, we understand from the details provided that the husband did not intend divorce/talaaq nor did he verbally say anything. He merely signed the documents, without verbalizing anything, because of the pressure from your father. If this reflects the reality, then the nikaah is still valid; talaaq did not take place. If he did have the intention of talaaq when signing or he verbally uttered the words of talaaq, then the ruling may be different. You may consult with him and revert to us in that case.

And Allaah Ta’aala knows best.
Mufti Muajul I. Chowdhury
Darul Iftaa New York

11/17/1445 AH – 05/25/2024 CE | 1097

وصل اللهم وسلم وبارك على سيدنا محمد وعلى ءاله وصحبه أجمعين


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