Returning the Shabka after filing f...

Egypt's Dar Al-Ifta

Returning the Shabka after filing for Khul'a


A question about whether the shabka (the present that the groom traditionally buys his wife-to-be, as a token of love and appreciation. It ranges from a simple gold wedding band to a small collection of diamond rings, priceless necklaces and jingly bracelets) is to be returned after filing for khul'a (divorce initiated by the wife in return for remuneration to the husband]).


It is established in Islamic law that a wife who files for divorce through khul'a must waive her right to mu`akhar sadaq [deferred dowry]. This is based on a hadith in which it is narrated that the wife of Thabit ibn Qays approached the prophet [pbuh] and said: " 'O messenger of Allah! I do not find blame with Thabit ibn Qays in anything concerning his character or religion, but I do not want to disobey [the teachings of Islam].' The prophet [pbuh] said, 'Do you agree to return the orchard he gave you as mahr?' 'Yes,' she replied. So the prophet told Thabit, 'O Thabit! Accept the orchard and grant her divorce' " [Bukhari]. It is deduced from this hadith that, since the orchard was her mahr and the prophet asked her to return it, a woman who files for divorce through khul'a must similarly return the mahr to her husband.

The Shabka

According to Egyptian customs that do not contradict Islamic law, the mahr includes the shabka.

The Ruling

Based on the above, it is obligatory to return the shabka in the event of divorce through khul'a because it is part of the mahr that must be returned according Egyptian custom.

The above answers the question and Allah Almighty knows best.

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