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Delayed Walimah

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by CouncilofUlama.co.za

Q: Please advise me with regard to the following situation: My daughter and her future husband have decided to have a nikah now and thereafter a walimah five months later. Both parties would than contribute the exact amount towards the walimah expenses. Is this permissible as my understanding is that the walimah is the boy’s responsibility?

A: The Waleemah feast is Sunnah and not a compulsory act. If it is left out, no sin will be incurred. It is a misconception to think that a Waleemah has to be a lavish feast, with many people invited. Two or three people can be invited with the intention of Waleemah and something simple is served, e.g. a few glasses of milk, or tea and biscuits, etc. Issues such as venue, amount or types of food are immaterial. We advise that the boy gives a simple Waleemah by inviting Muslim friends and members of the girls family. Thus there is no need for the boy to take money from the girl for the Waleemah. If she gives happily towards the Waleemah expense it is acceptable but not compulsory on her. She cannot be forced to contribute towards the Waleemah because it is the responsibility of the boy. He should rather keep it small and have it according to his own pocket.

Waleemah should only be done within the first two days after Nikah, and not thereafter. It will not be considered to be a Waleemah after this. Thus after the third day, the Thawaab of fulfilling the Sunnah of Waleemah will not be attained.

Allah Ta’aala knows best.

This answer was collected from CouncilofUlama.co.za, which is operated under the supervision of Council of Ulama Eastern Cape, South Africa.

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