Monday, November 20, 2017 - 1 Rabi' al-Awwal 1439

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Waiting period expenses and alimony of a rebellious wife

What is the ruling for a wife who refuses to give her husband his conjugal rights? Is she considered a rebellious wife and is she entitled to waiting period expenses, alimony and her deferred dowry?

Answer

Scholars maintain that a wife who disobeys her husband without an excuse or legal cause is blameworthy and commits a great sin. This is because of a husband's great right over his wife and her obligation to obey him. 'Adbul-Rahman ibn 'Awf, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Prophet [pbuh] said: "If a wife observes her five daily prayers, fasts her month of Ramadan, maintains her chastity and obeys her husband, on the Day of Judgment she will be told, 'Enter Paradise from whichever gate you wish' " [Reported by Ahmed].

Scholars deduced the prohibition of a wife refusing her husband's bed from the words of the Prophet [pbuh] which state: "If a woman spends the night refusing her husband's bed, the angels will curse her until morning" [Muslim and Bukhari].
Therefore, a woman must obey her husband concerning his rights over her and in matters that do not call for disobeying Allah.

The rights of a rebellious wife are forfeited

By refusing her husband's bed without a legal excuse, a wife is considered rebellious and thus forfeits her right to marital [financial] support. As for her right to waiting period expenses and alimony, these depend upon the circumstances of the divorce. If she is the one who sought divorce, waiving some or all of her rights, then she does not receive those rights from among the waiting period expenses, alimony and deferred bridal payment that she has waived.

Allah Almighty says:

"It is not lawful for you to take back anything you have given [your wives], except where both fear that they cannot maintain [the marriage] within the bounds set by God: if you [arbiters] suspect that the couple may not be able to do this, then there will be no blame on either of them if the woman opts to give something for her release. Those are the bounds set by God: do not overstep them. It is those who overstep God's bounds who are doing wrong."
[Qur`an 2:229]

If the husband is the one who initiated divorce and the wife did not waive any of her rights, then she is entitled to receive them.

Allah Almighty knows best.

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