Can the wife annul the marriage if the husband is not in contact with her

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

I have a sister who is separated from her husband after he left for Bangladesh with the reason that he was going for treatment or something other. Three years have gone by and he has not contacted or spoken with his wife nor his three beautiful children. Within that period they’ve spoken maybe a couple of times. Now my sister would like a divorce, how can she go about doing that? Can it be done through the  court system? Could you be kind enough to answer my question please?


In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.




An Islamic Shari Committee can annul a marriage if they have at least three just persons sitting therein.  They should all be knowledgeable and well versed in Shariah laws on marriage and divorce.  An annulment issued by such a committee is valid in the Shariah.   (The Complete System of Talaq p.211)


An annulment of marriage can be effected in any of the following situations:


  1. The husband is missing completely
  2. The husband is absent with no known whereabouts
  3. The husband is incapable of maintaining his wife
  4. The husband is unwilling to maintain his wife
  5. The husband oppresses the wife such that he does not fulfil her rights
  6. The husband is castrated
  7. The husband is impotent
  8. The husband is insane
  9. The husband is afflicted with leprosy or any other illness which makes living with him difficult
  10. The choice of an immature when he/she attains maturity
  11. Husband or wife become apostate
  12. Foster relationship which only becomes known after Nikah  


(The complete System of Divorce p.213)


With regards to your sister’s situation as her husband is unwilling to support her and unwilling to maintain her she can ask for an annulment of your marriage by an Islamic Shari Committee.  She can cite the unwillingness of her husband maintaining her.




Maulana Yaqub Qasmi
Dewsbury, UK
Home/Office: +44 (1924) 464122


Only Allah Knows Best


Mohammed Tosir Miah


Darul Ifta Birmingham

This answer was collected from, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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