Subject : Alimony is due on the Husband from the Date of Contract
Fatwa Number : 3007
Date : 30-10-2014
Classified : Support of dependents
Fatwa Type : Search Fatawaa

Question :

Is it obligatory to pay Zakah-ul-fitr on behalf of the fiancée whose marital contract was concluded ?

The Answer :

All perfect praise be to Allah. Blessings and peace be upon Prophet Mohammad.

Zakah-ul-fitr (post Ramadhaan obligatory charity) is paid by a Muslim on behalf of himself and those whom he is obliged to provide for. Muslim scholars have disagreed as regards the obligation of providing for a wife whose marriage hasn`t been consummated:

Some are of the view that it is an obligation on the husband starting from the date of the marriage contract was concluded as stated in the book [Al-Bahhr Ar-ra`iq]. “ Al-Fatwa Ala Jawaab Al-Kittaab, the husband is obliged to provide for his wife if he didn`t ask her to move to his house.”

Others are of the view that it is due from the time of her being ready to fulfill his marital rights and being willing to move to his house as stated in [Moghni Al-Mohtajj]: “ The new opinion of the Shafite Madhab (school of thought) is that it-a wife`s support and what comes with it- becomes an obligation once she fulfills his marital rights as she surrenders herself to him in return for her bridal money.”

In [Almoghni] by Ibn Qodamah]: “ A woman is entitled to receive support from her husband once she meets two conditions:……The second one: She surrenders totally to her husband. However, if she refused to go to his house, or her guardians stopped her from going, or both of them-husband and wife- stood still ( She didn`t ask to go to his house, nor did he ask her to come ) after the conclusion of the marriage contract, no support is due to her since the Prophet (PBUH) concluded his marriage contract with A`ish (May Allah be pleased with her), but consummated the marriage with her after two years. He started providing for her after the consummation of their marriage, not before that.”

The first view is customary in Sharia` courts where the husband is obliged to provide for the wife after the conclusion of the marriage contract , and before the consummation of the marriage, as stated in “ The Jordanian Civil Status Law “ for the year(2010), article(60): ” Support is due to a wife even if she was of a different faith, so long as the marriage contract is valid, and even if she was staying at her family`s. But, if the husband asked her to move to their house and she refrained without any legal excuse, then supporting her isn`t incumbent on him.”

If we, supposedly, adopt the second view, we would realize that weddings of current engagements is usually delayed by the husband; whereas, the wife and her guardians are willing to make it happen whenever he likes, and this is what takes the ruling of marriage consummation.

Therefore, the young woman`s support is due on her fiancé (husband) starting from the time of concluding the marriage contract-even before the consummation of the marriage-and it includes Zakah-ul-fitr, which is incumbent upon you (questioner) since it is impermissible for her father to pay it on your behalf. And Allah knows best.



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