Fatwa ID: 04848
Answered by: Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
In England a marriage has to be registered, therefore Ahmed and Fatima went to the registration office to get their marriage registered. This was before an Islamic nikah even happened. In the registration office a Christian lady asked Ahmed to say to Fatima, “I accept you to be my lawfully wedded wife”, and the Christian lady asked Fatima to say to Ahmed, “I accept you to be my lawfully wedded husband”. There were also numerous family members present, in actual fact when the marriage was getting registered, the Christian lady asked for two witnesses who had to also register their name, the two witnesses were male Muslim family members. This whole process was classed as an engagement. The couple has not yet conducted a proper Islamic nikah. My question is, is it permissible for Ahmed and Fatima to be together as a married couple because the basic requirements of an Islamic nikah were fulfilled?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
For a marriage to be valid the conditions are:
- There should be at least two male witnesses or one male and two female witnesses.
- The words of the proposal (Ijab) and acceptance (Qabul) clearly. (Hidayah p.306 v.2)
In the aforementioned scenario, as the boy and girl said the offer and acceptance in front of two male witnesses their marriage will be considered valid according to the laws of the Sharia. This will not be considered as an engagement.
Only Allah Knows Best
Written by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham