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

Question & Answer » Permanent Marriage

1 Question: Some Western governments allow the daughter to be independent of her parents, after she has passed the age of sixteen. If she seeks her parents advice, it is only for seeking their opinion or out of respect for them. Is such a virgin girl allowed to marry, be it permanent or a temporary marriage, without the consent of her father?
Answer: If this means that the father has allowed her to marry whomsoever she wants or that he has withdrawn from interfering in the matter of her marriage, it is permissible for her to do so; otherwise, based on obligatory precaution, it is not permissible.
2 Question: If a woman is over thirty years of age, and still virgin, is it necessary for her to seek the permission of her guardian for marriage?
Answer: If she is not independent, it is obligatory on her to seek his consent. Rather, even if she is independent, she must seek his consent, as a matter of compulsory precaution.
3 Question: Is it permissible for a virgin girl to use the light beauty powder in order to draw attention [to herself] in ladies only gatherings? What if she does so with the purpose of seeking marriage — wouldn’t it be counted as concealing physical defects, [if there were any]?
Answer: It is permissible for her to do that and it would not be regarded as “concealing the physical defects”. Even if it were, it would not be harãm unless she was intent on deceiving the person who wants to marry her.
4 Question: There is a Muslim woman whose husband has left her for a long time now so much so that there is no hope of their getting reunited in the near future; she claims that she cannot stay without a husband because of the difficulty in living as a single woman in the West where she fears robbery and stealing by break-ins into the house. Can she ask for divorce through the religious judge so that he may pronounce the divorce, whereby she can, remarry whosoever she wants?
Answer: f the husband has abandoned her, she can take her case to the religious judge who will then force the husband to choose one of two courses: either end the abandonment or release her [by divorce] so that she can marry someone else. If he refuses to do any of the two, and it is not possible to force him to adopt one of the two alternatives, the religious judge has the right to pronounce the divorce at her request.
But if the wife is the one who has left her husband without any [valid] justification, there is no way for the religious judge to pronounce her divorced.
5 Question: A Muslim couple got separated for a long time. Is it permissible for him to marry, temporarily or permanently, a woman from Ahlul Kitab without the knowledge of his Muslim wife? Is it permissible for him to marry, with the permission of his Muslim wife?
Answer: For a Muslim man to marry a woman from Ahlul Kitab permanently is against the compulsory precaution in any circumstance. And his temporary marriage to a Jewish or a Christian woman is allowed, only if he is not already married to a Muslim wife. If he has a Muslim wife, temporary marriage with an Ahlul Kitab woman is not permissible without her consent; nay, even with her consent, it is not permissible, based on compulsory precaution.
6 Question: I am married to a Sunni girl and it is a secret marriage, which nobody knows of. She has not been married before and we obviously didn’t get her father's permission. Does this mean that the marriage is invalid?
Answer: If her father does not permit, the marriage is not valid. Yes, if her father does not interfere in her affairs and she is independent in her, the marriage would be in order.
7 Question: I want to marry a Muslim girl, but I am Hindu. Is it permissible?
Answer: It is not permissible.
8 Question: Is it allowed to do Mut’ah before permanent marriage?
Answer: There is no problem in temporary marriage with the permission of the girl's father. However, if the two parties want to contract permanent marriage after temporary marriage, the remaining time of the fixed-time marriage should either expire or the husband should forgo it.
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