A wife's financial independence

Egypt's Dar Al-Ifta

A wife's financial independence


xt-indent: -18pt; margin: 0cm 0cm 10pt 36pt; unicode-bidi: embed; direction: ltr">1.      What is the effect of marriage on the financial rights of spouses and the legitimacy of spousal financial independence in light of Islamic law?
2.      Is it permissible for a wife to give her husband from her zakat money?



It is established in Islamic law that both the husband and his wife are financially independent of each other.Al-Darqatuni narrated through Hiban ibn Abu Jabla that the Prophetsaid, "Each person has more right to his property than his father, child, and the people at large." This hadith establishes the principle of a person's unrestricted right to dispose of his property [as he wishes].
The ruling
In Islamic law, marriage does not obligate spouses to merge their wealth whether it is liquid money, real estate, shares or otherwise. It is not permissible for either spouse to control the other's financial dispositions by virtue of the marriage contract. Moreover, Islamic law does not give either of them a financial right beyond:
-          The  obligatory dowry(mahr) owed by the husband to his wife due to the words of Allah the Almighty, "And give the women (on marriage) their dower as a free gift" [Qur`an 4: 4].
-          The obligatory financial support owed by the husband to his wife and children from her.
-          In the event of divorce, waiting period expenses (nafaqet al-'idda), child support if she is the custodial parent, and in some divorce cases alimony (nafaqt al-mut'ah).
-          Money owed by the wife to her husband if she asks for release for payment(khul') if he has not harmed her in any way.
The marriage contract does not affect the financial independence of either spouse either in part or in whole.
It is permissible for the wife to give her husband from her zakat money if he is eligible to receive it and is from among the eight recipients of zakat. Moreover, it is permissible for her to contribute towards household expenses by way of kindness but not as an obligation.
Allah the Almighty knows best.
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