Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - 3 Rabi' al-Awwal 1439

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Is it permissible to congratulate the parents of a child who was born out of wedlock?

Is it permissible to congratulate the parents of a child who was born out of wedlock?

Answer


Congratulating the parents for having a child is permissible in all cases as a sign of kindness and gentleness for the joy they feel with the advent of their baby.

It is rather a popular phenomenon in the West for the woman to have a child out of wedlock and the father of the child might marry her after a while or she might remain a single mother. This issue is known in the Islamic jurisprudence as taking the child that was born out of adultery as the legal child of the adulterer. This issue has two forms, the first form has to do with the woman if she was married and the second form has to do with the case if she wasn’t married.

The majority of scholars deemed it impermissible for the adulterer man to have legal parenthood of the child that was born out of adultery. A handful of scholars on the contrary allowed the legal parenthood of the adulterer man to the child only in the case if the woman was not married.

The major proof on which the scholarly opinion on this issue is based is the prophetic tradition in which the Prophet said “the child to bed and the adulterer to the stone”. The phrase of the child to bed means that if the woman is married and got pregnant, then her born child belongs to her husband and the child enjoys all legal rights such as inheritance as long as at least six months have passed since their last intercourse. As for the phrase “and the adulterer to the stone”, the Arabs used to refer to disappointment and deprivation with dust or stone. So in other words the adulterer has no legal right in this child.

The handful of scholars -who permitted the adulterer man to have legal rights as the parent of the child that was born out of adultery only in the case of the woman not being married- based their opinion on the justification that if the woman is unmarried then there would be no legal dispute over the right of fatherhood between the husband and the adulterer man. We find it permissible to follow the minority opinion in this regard in places where this phenomenon is prevalent.

Imam Abu Hanifa said that he does not see any legal impediment for the adulterer man to have legal rights over the child that was born out of adultery and he could marry the mother of his child and becomes the legal father of this child.

 
Related links
» Establishing a child's paternity
» Adding the last component of a guardian's surname to an orphan's name
» Abortion and the acknowledgment of an illegitimate offspring
» The Legal Ruling for Adoption