Does the Husband need to seek the permission of his wife before taking a second wife?

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

To do a second nikah does the husband have to seek permission from the first wife?


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

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuhu

There are two aspects regarding the husband taking a second wife:

a) Shariah

b) Practicality

According to the Shariah, a man may have four wives at once on condition he maintains equality among all his wives as stipulated in Shariah. This is clearly mentioned in the Qur’aan. According to Shariah, a man may take a second wife without the permission of the first wife. However, from a practicality perspective, in order to maintain a harmonious relation, it is wise to talk the first wife into his intention of taking a second wife. Generally, if a man marries a second wife without discussing the issue with his first wife, his life become miserable and that causes a great amount of anxiety, stress and discomfort to his wife and dependants. One should therefore approach the matter of taking a second wife with diplomacy and wisdom by informing the first wife. This will lead to a more harmonious and successful marriage.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Ismail Desai,

Darul Iftaa

Checked and Approved,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

This answer was collected from, which is operated under the supervision of Mufti Ebrahim Desai from South Africa.

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