It is highly unlikely that the Imam’s prayer would be invalid according to the Hanafi school. If his prayer fulfills the basic integrals and conditions of the prayer, the prayer is valid and not in any way disliked.
If however, one has reasonable doubt that (a) the integrals and conditions were not fulfilled or (b) one is sure that the Imam’s wudu is not valid according to the Hanafi school – then one should resort to the secondary position in the Hanafi school.
The Secondary Position Regarding Following an Imam of Another Legal School
The secondary position is that the validity of the follower’s prayer depends on the validity of the Imam’s prayer in accordance with the Imam’s legal school of thought [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar].
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences