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Wife Moving Away from the Husband’s House without his Consent

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Daruliftaa.com

Is it okay for a wife to move away from her husband’s house without his permission, consent or knowledge, that too in his absence; on the advice of her parents, because of differences with the other family members of the husband?

We have been married for 14 years and I am away in gulf for economic reasons, being forced by my wife and in-laws. I left her in my home where she lived with my mother, brother and unmarried sisters. I have visited once in a while only.

Due to some differences with my brother and his wife, one day when I called, her father told me that he has separated her from my home and placed in another rented house. Now she is living there all alone with my two daughters. (Her parents are not living with her in the new house).

What the hanafi maslak says for a wife who is moving out of her husband’s home when he is away and without his permission or consent and even w/o his knowledge. Only informed when I have made a routine call to my in-law’s home. Her father told me he has moved her in to a new home. When I questioned his authority to do so w/o asking me he stated that I should have called him earlier to know his motives in view of prevalent differences with my bother. I have an aged mother with unmarried sisters.

Can a woman be influenced by her parents even after 14 years of marriage? Whose consent/advice is superior for her to follow? Husband or father? Please advice suitably how to deal in this situation, and advice my wife who is living all alone with my daughters in the context of sharia.


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

It is difficult for me to comment accurately on what the root of the problem is, given the fact that I am unaware of exactly what has taken place. Nevertheless, I will attempt to give you some broad and general guidelines, Insha Allah.

It is the responsibility of the husband to take care of his wife physically, emotionally, financially, etc. Neglecting one’s wife of her rights is a grave sin as well as being a major cause in the break down of marriages. Thus, it is your responsibility to make sure that you give your wife all her rights.

As for the wife, it is not permissible for her to leave her husband’s house without his consent.

Allah Most High says:

“As for those women on whose part you fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), refuse to share their beds, (and as a last resort) hit them (lightly)…” (al-Nisa, 34)
The word ‘Nushuz’ (disloyalty) in the verse has been explained by the commentators of the Qur’an as the woman who is disobedient to her husband in things she is required to obey him, especially to leave the house without his permission.

The jurists (fuqaha) have stated that, a woman who leaves her husband’s house without his permission (nashiza) will not be entitled to any financial support, for entitlement to financial support is due to remaining and restricting herself to the husband’s home. (al-Mawsili, al-Ikhtiyar, 2/225).

Having said that, it must also be remembered that a wife has a right to live (and demand to live) separately. It is the duty and responsibility of the husband to provide her with shelter (suknah). This shelter must, if she demands so, be free from the interference of any of the husband’s family members. The responsibility of the husband will be fulfilled if the wife is provided with a separate area within the house, and where she is able to keep her belongings and where none of the husband’s family members are able to enter. (Radd al-Muhtar 3/559-600)

You mentioned that your wife had problems with members of your family, thus the solution to the problem may be in providing her with separate living quarters. Many of the marital problems occur (according to my understanding) due to the husband being negligent in providing his wife with a separate home, which is her basic right in Shariah.

Therefore, first of all you need to come back home to your wife. If you can live and work locally, then that would be ideal. Secondly, provide her with a separate living quarter, and make it clear to all other (your and her) family members not to interfere in your marriage, and try making a fresh start by forgetting and forgiving the past. Insha Allah, with the help of Allah, your problems should be solved.

And Allah Knows Best

[Mufti] Muhammad ibn Adam
Darul Iftaa
Leicester , UK

This answer was collected from Daruliftaa.com, which is headed by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam Al-Kawthari. He’s based in the United Kingdom.

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