The Official Website of the Office of His Eminence Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Husseini Al-Sistani

Books » Islamic Laws

Marriage » Occasions when husband or wife can nullify Nikah → ← Marriage » The method of pronouncing the marriage formula

Marriage » Conditions of pronouncing Nikah

2379. There are certain conditions for the Nikah recited for marriage. They are as follows:
On the basis of precaution, the formula (Nikah) of marriage contract should be pronounced in correct Arabic. And if the man and the woman cannot pronounce the formula in correct Arabic, they can pronounce the Nikah in any other language, and it is not necessary to appoint any representatives. But the words used in translation must convey strictly the meaning of "Zawwajtu" and "Qabiltu". The man and the woman or their representatives, who recite the Nikah, should have the intention of Insha' (i.e. reciting it in a creative sense, making it effective immediately). In other words, if the man and the woman themselves pronounce the formula, the intention of the woman by saying: Zawwajtuka nafsi' should be that she effectively makes herself the wife of the man; and by saying: "Qablitut tazwija" the man effectively accepts her as his wife. And if the representatives of the man and the woman pronounce the Nikah, their intention by saying: 'Zawwajtu' and 'Qablitu' should be that the man and the woman who have appointed them as their representatives, have effectively become husband and wife. The person who pronounces the Nikah (whether he pronounces it for himself or has been engaged by some other person as his representative) should be sane, and as a precaution, he should be baligh also. If the Nikah is pronounced by the representatives or the guardians of the man and the woman, they should identify the man and the woman by uttering their names or making intelligible signs towards them. Hence, if a person has more than one daughters, and he says to a man: Zawwajtuka Ihda Banati (i.e. I have given away one of my daughters to you as your wife) and the man says: Qabiltu (i.e. I have accepted) the marriage contract is void, because the daughter has not been identified. The woman and the man should be willing to enter into a matrimonial alliance. If, however, the woman ostensibly displays hesitation while giving her consent, but it is known that in her heart, she is agreeable to the marriage, the marriage is in order.

2380.
If, while reciting the Nikah, even one word is pronounced incorrectly, as a result of which its meaning is changed, the marriage contract would be void.

2381.
If a person pronouncing Nikah comprehends its general meaning, and has a clear intention of effecting that meaning, the Nikah will be valid. It is not necessary for him to know the exact meaning of each word, or to know the laws of Arabic grammar.

2382.
If Nikah of a woman is pronounced to a man without her consent, but later both man and woman endorse the Nikah, the marriage is in order.

2383.
If the woman and the man, or any one of them, is coerced into matrimony, and they give consent after the Nikah has been pronounced, the marriage is in order, although it is better that the Nikah be repeated.

2384.
The father and the paternal grandfather can contract a marriage on behalf of his minor son or daughter, or on behalf of an insane son or daughter, if they are baligh. And after the children have become baligh or the insane has become sane, he can endorse or abrogate it, if the contracted marriage involves any moral lapse or scandal. And if the marriage contract does not involve any moral lapse or scandal, but the na-baligh son or daughter calls off the marriage, then as an obligatory precaution, a Talaq or a renewed Nikah, whatever the case may be, must be recited.

2385.
If a girl has reached the age of bulugh and is virgin and mature (i.e. she can decide what is in her own interest) wishes to marry, she should, obtain permission from her father or paternal grandfather, although she may be looking after her own affairs. It is not, however, necessary for her to obtain permission from her mother or brother.

2386.
In the following situations, it will not be necessary for a woman to seek the permission of her father or paternal grandfather, before getting married:
If she is not a virgin. If she is a virgin, but her father or paternal grandfather refuse to grant permission to her for marrying a man who is compatible to her in the eyes of Shariah, as well as custom. If the father and the grandfather are not in any way willing to participate in the marriage. If they are not in a capacity to give their consent, like in the case of mental illness etc. If it is not possible to obtain their permission because of their absence, or such other reasons, and the woman is eager to get married urgently.

2387.
If the father or the paternal grandfather contracts marriage on behalf of his na-baligh son, the boy, upon attaining bulugh, should pay maintenance of his wife. In fact, he should start paying her maintenance before becoming baligh, when he is able to consummate the marriage. And the wife should not be too young to have any sexual relation with the husband. And in the situation other than these, there is a strong indication that she is entitled to maintenance from the husband, therefore a compromise should be carried out as a precaution.

2388.
If the father or the paternal grandfather contracts a marriage on behalf of his na-baligh son, they should pay the Mahr if the boy does not own any means, or if either of them undertakes to pay the Mahr himself. In other situations, the father or the paternal grandfather can pay Mahr from the boy's wealth, but it should not exceed the proper usual Mahr customarily given in similar cases. But if the circumstances demand that higher Mahr be paid, they can pay it from the boy's wealth, and not otherwise, unless the boy approves it after having become baligh.
Marriage » Occasions when husband or wife can nullify Nikah → ← Marriage » The method of pronouncing the marriage formula
العربية فارسی اردو English Azərbaycan Türkçe Français