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Marriage dissolved due to separation

Fatwaa ID: 1618

Assalamu Alaykum Mufti Sahib,
A friend of mine separated from her husband due to abuse. Brief context – he was hitting her, confiscating her possessions, isolating her from family etc. She eventually left and the couple have not been together or in touch for over 2 years now. They’ve had no form of khalwa and they will not get back together. However, he’s refusing to give talaaq and her parents are unfortunately not very cooperative with khula.

When a couple are separated for this long and on bad terms, does the marriage become invalid even without talaaq? Or how long must a couple be separated before their marriage is dissolved?

JazakAllah Khayr for your time

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

We sympathize with your friend in her unfortunate predicament. May Allaah Ta’aala make it easy for her and grant her happiness. May He guide the husband.

Marriage does not break or dissolve due to separation however long it may be. Separation on bad terms has the same ruling. The marriage remains intact unless talaaq, khula’ or faskh is found.

If the husband refuses to give talaaq, then the wife may consider khula’. Khula’ refers to offering a return of the mahr or any monetary or material amount in lieu of a divorce. The husband’s acceptance is necessary for this to be valid. If he refuses to accept this as well, then she may refer to a reputable Muslim judicial board and apply for a faskh, annulment of the marriage. The board will assess the case and preside over the matter.

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

01/25/1445 AH – 08/12/2023 CE | AML1-8176

وصل اللهم وسلم وبارك على سيدنا محمد وعلى ءاله وصحبه أجمعين


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