Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
I have been betrothed to a Muslim brother for almost a month now. We live in different countries and have been unable to meet due to the pandemic and travel restrictions. Due to money constraints, the brother has decided to travel to my country for the nikah this year, and he plans to travel to Morocco right after to study for a couple of months. This means we would have to delay the marriage to five months.
What would be the best thing for us to do Islamically? I have heard of Muslims performing the nikah through zoom or video call in order not to delay the marriage and to avoid any fitna that can come from postponing it.
Thank you for your question. May Allah Most High reward you for wanting to do the right thing according to Islam and prevent problems.
In the Shafi’i school, the groom and bride’s guardian must be physically present. If this does not happen, it is not valid in our school. It is superior anyway to have the nikah (marriage contract) in person so that the sunnas of the nikah can be enacted. Although you may feel that there is a detriment in waiting, I think that there may be more detriment in doing it over Zoom.
Please see the details of the ruling here:
Are Marriage Contracts Valid via Video Calls? (Shafi’i)
I encourage you to wait and not keep in touch with him until the nikah as he is not your husband yet. A date can be set, and you should occupy yourselves with learning and preparing for marriage until then. Review your personally obligatory knowledge, take a course on marital rights and obligations, hone your domestic skills, and reflect and read about the pious who came before us. Read Quran daily with the meaning and surround yourself with like-minded young couples, in sha Allah, who can band with you to worship Allah as though you see Him.
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 aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.