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Three Talaqs via WhatsApp

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Mufti Eunus Ali


If the following messages are sent via WhatsApp to the wife then are they 3 divorces also the husband had the intention to scare and worry his wife when he said he didn’t actually want a divorce :

I divorce
I divor
I divorce you

Are these 3 divorces?

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful


Firstly it is narrated by AbuHurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him):

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: There are three things which, whether undertaken seriously or as a joke, are treated as serious: Marriage, divorce and taking back a wife (after a divorce which is not final).[1]

From the above Hadith, we learn that to issue or write a talaq to scare the wife will take effect regardless of the intention of the husband.

Secondly, the written divorce (whether it be by pen or as a text message) is divided into two categories:

  1. Marsumah: is where the letter is addressed to his wife.
  2. Ghair Marsumah is where the letter is not written to his wife.

Then Marsuma and GhairMarsumahhave both been further divided into two types:

  1. Clear and explicit writing: the example of this is the writing that is done on a piece of paper, wall or ground in a manner that is understandable.
  2. Unclear and implicit writing: the examples of unclear writing will be to write on the air, on water or on something in a way that is not understandable or legible.

As for the first type whereby the writing is clear and it is directed or referred to his wife for example he says ‘I have given you a divorce,’ then a divorce will occur irrespective of the husband making an intention or not of the divorce.

When the writing is unclear or eligible, divorce will not occur irrespective of it being Marsumah orGhairMarsumah. In this category, the intention will not be taken into consideration.

Finally, when the writing is clear but it is not directed or written to his wife for example he typed the word ‘divorce’ or ‘Talaq’ then talaq will occur if he made an intention of it, otherwise no divorce will occur. [2]

In regards to your question, as the husband had used WhatsApp to message the wife, it will be considered marsumah. Although there may be spelling mistakes and grammatical errors the message is clear and therefore the divorces will take effect and three divorces will be issued to the wife.

Only Allah knows best

Written by Mufti Eunus Ali

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

[1] Sunan Abi Dawood: 2194

[2] Fatawa Hindiyyah, Volume 1, Page 414, Darul Kutubul Ilmiyyah

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

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