Q: A couple are married for 17 years with 3 young kids. The husband intends taking a second wife, but the first wife refuses and seeks divorce on the grounds that she will not be able to live under a polygamous arrangement.
1. What is the correct divorce procedure in this case and what are the rules governing maintenance of the wife?
2. What are the rules governing the division of assets acquired in the marriage between the husband and wife?
1. If there is no way of reconciling and the husband wishes to issue a talaaq then he should issue one raj`ee talaaq during her tuhr (period of purity) in which he has not engaged in conjugal relations with her. The wife will be entitled to maintenance for the duration of the iddat.
2. What belongs to the husband is his and what belongs to the wife is hers. If something was bought jointly then it must be divided accordingly.
And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.
Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)