Answered by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
What should the second wife do if the husband is continuing having an unlawful relationship with his first wife after giving her three divorces
It is not necessary for the wife to be present for the divorce to occur. Also when the words of divorce are said, divorce occurs irrespective of whether he intended divorce or not. The reason for this that the words “divorce” and “talaq” are clear words of divorce which is not dependant upon intention. (Bahrur Raaiq p.257 v.3)
Therefore, when your husband gave his first wife three divorces, three divorces will occur. It is unlawful for your husband to continue having any relationship with his first wife.
Regarding your situation, try to advise and explain to your husband in a nice way that what he is doing is having an effect on you and is putting a strain on the marriage. If you can’t deal with the issue yourself, then you should resort to the mediation of either one of your or his family members. If the difficulty persists then contact the Islamic Shariah Council in Dewsbury for advice whether you have legitimate grounds to apply for a cancellation of the marriage.
Maulana Yaqub Qasmi
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Only Allah Knows Best
Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham