Could you please tell me if under the following conditions there is a valid Nikah
Only 1 witness present at the Nikah. The male witness was NOT well known to either the sister or brother and can not be contacted to verify the Nikah. The brother was fully aware that 2 witnesses are required. The sister was new to Islam.
There was no written marriage contract.
The marriage was kept secret for over a year from the first wife and community.
The brother “helped” the sister to convert to Islam but did not marry her straight away. He continued to spend time with her alone (says that there was no physical contact) up until the time of the Nikah.
The first wife confronted the brother regarding some proof she found that he was involved with another woman not long after the “nikah” to the second wife had taken place, but the brother lied to his first wife and said that he had been just talking with her and that he no longer had any contact with the other woman. He then told his first wife after a year that he had a second wife and that he had lied to her about not having anything to do with her.
The first wife would like to know that before dealing with the fact that her husband has second wife is there a valid Nikah in the first place to the second wife.
- Firstly, we would like to know the total amount of people present in the gathering when the Nikah took place.
- For the validity of Nikah to take place, there has to be two male witnesses or two female and one male witness present. The witnesses also do not have to be specified i.e. you “so&so” and you “so&so” are witnesses. As long as the Nikah is witnessed by two Muslim males or one male and two females the Nikah will be correct.
- Gauging from the above situation, there must have been two people present other than the groom and bride namely the person performing the Nikah and the witness. So there were two males present which therefore renders the Nikah valid. If however the total amount of people present were less than four, the Nikah will not be valid.
And Allah Ta’ala knows best
Abdurrahman bin Yaseen Cader
Attested to as correct by:
Mufti Muhammad Ashraf
09 May 2007
20 Rabee’uth Thaani 1428