Woman’s Right To Khula (talaaq)

Question

I am a student seeking answers on some questions especially on Islamic law of divorce. I have read opinions of certain scholars who say that khula can only take effect if the husband is willing to release his wife. If what they say is true than what is the use of providing the right of khula to a woman?

After reading the Qur'an 2:229 and the cases of Jamila Binte Abdullah and Habeebah bint Sahil I get an impression that the court after deciding that woman has a genuine case orders her husband to pronounce divorce. The confusion in my mind comes in this case, what if the man even after receiving the verdict from court is adamant on not releasing his wife even though the woman is offering back her mehr. In this case can the verdict be imposed by the court on the man to divorce his wife?

Since divorce in Islamic law comes into effect after man pronounces divorce so can the court compel the man to pronounce divorce in a situation where he is stubborn for not doing so?


Answer

In case of extreme difficulties in a partnership a wife has the right to ask her husband to divorce her and she can even let go of her mehr etc to convince an adamant husband. Now if the husband does not release her she can ask someone among the family and friends to work as arbitrators. If the man is still not ready to divorce his wife she can go to the court. The court can ask the husband to release his wife by divorcing her but if the man is still adamant it can also declare that nikah is cancelled. This way the woman will be released by express verdict of the court and she will be able to marry someone after the iddah. The court can thus take any course. It can ask the husband to divorce the woman or even cancel the nikah right there and then.

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