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Is civil divorce valid for Muslims?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Darulifta-Deoband.com
Muslim practising women very often ask us what they can do when their husband don’t fulfill their rights towards them or when they have a non-islamic behaviour and they don’t want to grant them divorce. I would like to know your opinion about the following points: 1) May civil divorce granted by a french non-muslim judge considered as equivalent to a separation (tafreeq) granted by a Muslim Qadi if the reason for divorce is islamically valid? 2) In that case, who can decide if the reason for divorce is valid or not and how? 3) If husband and wife married only religiously and the imam who performed the marriage is available, has he the right to pronounce separation? 4) If this imam is no more reachable who can pronounce the separation between husband and wife? I am very keen to read your answer, so many women here are facing real difficulties with their husband. Jazakumullah khairan Was salam alaikum wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh


(Fatwa: 1152/873=H)

(1), (2) In order to get women rescued it is not enough only to write a question and get the answer. We are not aware of France‘s circumstances. You should contact some local Ulama over there, who having repeatedly gone through Al-heelat-un-najizah, may prepare questions and send them to us. This may help to improve the situation.

(3) The one who performs nikah is not liable to pronounce separation.

(4) The local Ulama can discharge this duty according to the instructions given in Al-heelat-un-najizah. They can evolve the paper with mutual consultation and modify the terms and conditions as per the local circumstances. This will help to solve the problems, in-sha-Allah.

Allah (Subhana Wa Ta’ala) knows Best

Darul Ifta,
Darul Uloom Deoband

This answer was collected from the official ifta website of Darul Uloom Deoband in India.

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