Does a Woman Need Her Father’s or Husband’s Permission To Work, Even From Home?

Answered according to Shafi'i Fiqh by

Question: I came across several narrations that a woman must not step out unless in need and with father or husband’s permission. Can women leave home without a need, even if the father/husband permits? What are the positions of Shafi’i and Hanafi madhab? Do women need the father’s or husband’s permission if to work from home?


Assalamu alaykum,
Thank you for your question. Leaving home is generally understood as a basic human need that a woman should fulfill with conditions, as explained in these excellent answers by a Shafi’i scholar and Hanafi scholar. Please read them fully.

Mutual understanding

A woman should have a mutual understanding with her guardian (father or husband) about how much she goes out and what is considered crossing the limits. Every home functions differently, and optimally, a happy agreement should be reached by both parties on this subject. I have seen men who leave all the outside tasks to their over-worked wives and other men who don’t give their wives enough opportunity to get a break from home. Both are extreme. Balance is key, and this is the way of the Prophet. May Allah bless him and grant him peace.


The same principle applies to having a job. A woman may only work with her guardian’s permission, which also comes down to mutual understanding and balance. Does he insist that she works when she doesn’t want to? Does he refuse to let her work when she wants to? A happy medium, a moderate way, is the best way, and I pray that all families can find this balance that will bring peace and tranquility to their home, always prioritizing Allah’s pleasure.

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria, for two years, where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, Tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Master’s in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan, where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.

This answer was collected from It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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