Husband Not Working

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I really need your help in order to give me an Islamic answer to my problem. My husband became sick with cancer when we got married. In this time, I did my best to be there for him and to help him in everything I can. Now, Alhamdulillah, it seems that this sickness is healed, Alhamdulillah.

The problem is that he stopped working, and his employer said to him, that he can come back, whenever he wants (i.e. when he is feeling better). Now, 2 years later, I say to him that he must go to work, as we have a daughter and he must take care of his family. I do not want to live from the money of the state. He does not want to go to work, and he tells me that it is not my business to say to him to got to work.

His mother is very sick and she is in hospital (with cancer too) and because of this, he says to me he will not go to work. But in this Dunya, we will always have ibtilaa which we must take with sabr. That means that we cannot neglect our duties and responsibilities. I think he can go to work, and he can take care of his mother. My problem is what can I do, because he does not want to speak with me and he thinks it is not my business. I need the Islamic point of view, as my husband is, Alhamdulillah very practising and fearing Allah. Jazakumallahu khayran.


بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful





The Shariah demands that the husband treats his wife with fairness and affection at all times. The Shariah dictates that the wife has an irrevocable right to the following three things;

1. Food must be sufficient for her.

2. Clothing – she must have a least two full sets of clothes.

3. Housing- she must at least have a room, which ensures her privacy.

(Al- Ikhtiyar p.229 v.4)


With regards to your question, if you are receiving the aforementioned rights i.e. food, clothing and housing, whether your husband is paying for it or your receiving state benefit, it will be considered as though your rights are being fulfilled. You can suggest to your husband to work.

It should be borne in mind that if the husband is unable or unwilling to fulfil the aforementioned three irrevocable rights, the wife has the right to put forward her case to the Islamic Sharee Council and they may annul the marriage. However, this should be the last resort.

In the meantime, you can encourage the husband to work however you do not have a right to enforce this on him. (The Complete System of Divorce p.213)



Only Allah knows best

Written by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

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