Answered by Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan
My husband has asked for a legal divorce. We have been married for 21 years with two children. He wants me to leave the house soon. He wants to do the Islamic talaq when I leave the house. I live in a country where we both don’t have our families for support.
Due to the above, I am looking for accomodation for myself and my kids to move soon. Since he asked for a legal divorce, it’s horrible to live in the house. Considering the mental health of the kids and what I have suffered.
Can I do my ‘idda out of his house? Am I not entitled to maintenance? What are the laws governing this? To ensure that I keep the accommodation I have to work. When he issues the talaq, it will be irrevocable. I don’t want ever to go back to him. Any help is appreciated.
In principle, expressions that affect divorce are either ambiguous (kinaya) or unambiguous (sarih). When they are unclear, the divorce will only be effected if the expression was accompanied by an intention to divorce. Unambiguous expressions do not require an intention to divorce but are restricted to derivatives of the word “divorce,” such as “I divorce you” and “you are divorced.”
Apart from incidents four and five, none of his expressions amount to divorce, whether kinaya or sarih. For incidents four and five, they may be considered an ambiguous expression of divorce (kinaya). Since your husband had no intention to divorce, as you mentioned in your question, they will not be considered valid expressions of divorce. Consequently, your marriage remains valid and intact.
May Allah grant understanding between you and your spouse. May He grant closeness, happiness, and compassion. Amin.
And Allah knows best.
[Shaykh] Abdurragmaan Khan
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan received ijazah’ ammah from various luminaries, including but not restricted to: Habib Umar ibn Hafiz—a personality who affected him greatly and who has changed his relationship with Allah, Maulana Yusuf Karaan—the former Mufti of Cape Town; Habib’ Ali al-Mashhur—the current Mufti of Tarim; Habib’ Umar al-Jaylani—the Shafi’i Mufti of Makkah; Sayyid Ahmad bin Abi Bakr al-Hibshi; Habib Kadhim as-Saqqaf; Shaykh Mahmud Sa’id Mamduh; Maulana Abdul Hafiz al-Makki; Shaykh Ala ad-Din al-Afghani; Maulana Fazlur Rahman al-Azami and Shaykh Yahya al-Gawthani amongst others.