Bismillah al-Rahman al-Rahim


 Traditional Islamic jurisprudence says that Muslims should only marry each other.  The only exception to this is that Muslim men are allowed to marry women who are Ahl al-Kitab (People of Scripture), usually limited to Jews and Christians.  Traditionally, Muslim women were not allowed to marry non-Muslim men.  But what happens to a non-Muslim couple who are married, and later one or both of them convert to Islam?  Here are some fatwas on the issue, that slightly differ from each other:

A. Fatwa of The European Council for Fatwa & Research, including Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, Sheikh ‘Abdullah bin Bayyah, Sheikh ‘Abdullah al-Judai, Sheikh Suhaib Hasan and others (from Sheikh ‘Abdullah bin Bayyah, Sina’at al-Fatwa, pp. 356-7)

  1. If both of the couple become Muslim, and they are not close relatives by blood or suckling that would make the marriage invalid, their marriage continues in its validity. (NB they do not need an Islamic nikah ceremony.)
  2. If only the husband converts to Islam, they are not close relatives and the wife is a person of scripture, their marriage continues in its validity.
  3. If only the wife converts to Islam, the view of the Council is that: a) if she converts before the marriage is consummated, she must leave him immediately; b) if she converts after consummation and her husband converts within 3 months or within 3 of her monthly cycles, their marriage continues in its validity; c) as before, but if a long time period has passed, she may remain with him in the expectation that he will convert also.  If he eventually converts, their marriage continues in its validity, without needing a new marriage ceremony.  d) If she wishes to leave her husband after the 3-month time period, she should seek dissolution of her marriage from the relevant authorities.

4. If the wife is Muslim and the husband is not, the four Madhhabs do not allow her to remain with him after the expiry of the 3-month period, or to have sexual relations with him.  However, some scholars allow her to remain with him, fully-married, as long as he does not harm her regarding her religious practice and as long as she has hope that he will also convert to Islam eventually.

It is authentically narrated from ‘Umar bin al-Khattab that a woman became a Muslim while her husband remained non-Muslim: he ruled, “If she wishes, she may leave him or if she wishes, she may remain with him.”  Also, there is an authentic narration from ‘Ali bin Abi Talib: “If the wife of a Jewish or Christian man becomes Muslim, he is entitled to remain her husband, since he has a covenant with the Muslims.”  Similar views are authentically-narrated from Ibrahim al-Nakh’i, Imam Sha’bi and Hammad bin Abi Sulayman.


B. FATWA OF SHEIKH ‘ABDULLAH AL-JUDAI (from his book Islam Ahad al-Zawjayn, pp. 249-251)

  1. There is no decisive, unequivocal text (nass qati’) about this matter.
  2. There is no consensus (ijma’) about this matter.
  3. Pre-Islamic marriages are sound and valid.  They can only be annulled for definite reasons.  Difference of religion is not a definite cause of invalidity due to the absence of an unequivocal text and due to the existence of a difference of opinion about the matter.
  4. Evidence from the Qur’an and Sunnah shows that a couple remaining together with a difference of religion does not damage the basis of their faiths.  Their relationship remains sound, not corrupt.
  5. The simple fact that one of them converts to Islam does not invalidate the marriage.
  6. Despite the multitude of people converting to Islam in his time, it is not recorded at all that the Prophet (pbuh) separated a husband and wife or ordered their separation due to one of them converting, or due to one of them converting before the other.  What is authentic from him is the opposite, as in the case of his daughter Zaynab who remained married to Abul-‘As for six years after she converted to Islam and before he did so, just before the Conquest of Mecca and after the revelation of Surah al-Mumtahinah.  The most that happened was that she emigrated and left him in Mecca after the Battle of Badr, but her emigration (hijrah) did not nullify their marriage.
  7. To say that the ayah of al-Mumtahinah ends marital relations due to a difference of religion is not correct.  It only applies when one spouse is at war with Islam (harbi), not simply a non-Muslim (kafir).
  8. The ayah of al-Mumtahinah allows a believer to marry a believing woman whose husband is at war with Islam.  It does not obligate this.  The story of Zaynab shows that a woman’s marriage to a non-Muslim (harbi) man changes from being binding to being allowed.  The reason for this is the difficulty of her returning to her harbi husband, and the difficulty she faces without a husband.
  9. The ayah forbids a Muslim man from retaining a non-Muslim wife who has not joined him in emigrating from a land of kufr to a land of Islam, or has fled from him, renouncing her faith and joining non-Muslims who are at war with Islam.  The reason for this is to prevent an inclination towards ones enemies, as happened with Hatib bin Abi Balta’ah, who wrote to the polytheists about some of the movements of the Muslims due to the presence of some of his relatives in Mecca.
  10. When one of the couple converts to Islam whilst the other is not at war with Islam, they are allowed to remain together.  They are not separated simply due to difference of religion.  The evidence for this is the practice of the Prophet (pbuh) and the Companions regarding those who embraced Islam in Mecca before the Hijrah and at the Conquest of Mecca.  This was also the fatwa given by ‘Umar during his caliphate without any opposition, and also by ‘Ali.
  11. A difference in religion due to the conversion of one of the couple to Islam allows the annulment of the marriage but does not obligate it, as shown by the judgment of ‘Umar with the endorsement of the Companions.
  12. The conclusions of the Madhhabs in this matter are not to be given precedence due to their opposition to what is established, weakness of evidence (dalil), weakness of juristic indication (istidlal), or all of the above.
  13. The allowance for the couple to remain together means that their marital life together is permitted, including sexual intercourse.



The majority of jurists regard a man who doesn’t pray regularly out of laziness as still a Muslim and not a kafir, so his wife is not obliged to divorce him.

In certain situations, the wife is allowed to have patience and persevere with her marriage, despite the objectionable behaviour of her husband, especially if she has children from him and she fears that they will become psychologically ruined and wasted.

(Sheikh ‘Abdullah bin Bayyah, Sina’at al-Fatwa, p. 353)

Compiled and translated by Usama Hasan, London, 13th January 2012

Minor updates: 21/12/2015

A PDF version of this article can be found here: One of a couple converting to Islam

Update: 26/01/2017


Q&A reposted from http://eshaykh.com/halal_haram/convert-required-to-divorce-non-muslim-spouse/

Convert required to divorce non-Muslim spouse?


As-salamu ‘alaikum,

An urgent question that has certainly come up again and again, requiring an absolutely authoritative answer, is what is to be done if a married woman accepts Islam but her husband does not.

Let’s say as an extreme example that they’ve been married for fifty years, have ten children together and love each other dearly. The wife has no job skills with which to provide for herself, much less for her children; the husband is ill or handicapped and his wife takes care of his needs. He’s fine with her new faith and lets her practice as she likes and teach it to their children but does not want to accept or commit to it for himself.

What to do? Telling a Muslim woman who is already married to a non-Muslim man that she must divorce him because staying with him is haram, deserves the death penalty and will earn her Hell isn’t the same thing as telling an unmarried Muslimah that their intended marriage to a non-Muslim man is prohibited and will nullify her profession of Islam. Moreover, there are no children involved who love their father and might end up traumatized and hating Islam if it the breakup of the household. Additionally, forcing *already-married couples *to break up would certainly deter many non-Muslim women from converting to Islam, no matter how much they may wish to if it means breaking an existing or possible future marriage.

Please understand that I’m not arguing with Allah Subhanuhu wa T’a’ala. Hasha,  God forbid! Rather, I’m just trying to understand how the Islamic Shar’iah deals with this specific situation, which is certainly not rare in our time. The website,


deals with the issue but I need to know how acceptable this opinion is for Ahl-us-Sunnah wal-Jam’ah. May Allah greatly reward you for any help you can give.


Alaykum salam,

If there is acceptance on his part and tolerance for his wife’s religion then there is hope for himself eventually accepting Islam. This hope is the basis for validating the continuity of their marriage as in the case of Fatima bint Asad and her non-Muslim husband Abu Talib.

And Allah knows best.

Hajj Gibril Haddad

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Mike hatfield Says:

    When The Prophet (SAW) liberated Makkah, Ikrama abi Jahal, fled. His wife embraced Islam and the Prophet (SAW) forgave Ikrama.

    When she caught up with him and said he was forgive, they journeyed back. He tried to be intimate with her, but she did not allow this because he was still non Muslim.

    Todays sholars will also permit the marriage of man with man soon!!! The prophet (SAW) warned the fitna of a man with knowledge!! These ulema shouild fear Allah

  2. muslim sex advice Says:

    muslim sex advice…


  3. Zeenat Says:

    If marriage between muslims and non-muslims are valid in the case above, what’s the difference in a muslim woman marrying a non-muslim man (of the book) who is interested in converting to islam if he allows her to practice Islam, to learn about Islam together and has agreed for all the children from the marriage to be raised as muslims.

    • Dawud Says:

      O believers, when believing women come over to you as refugees, then examine them. God alone is cognizant of their faith. If you find that they are believers, do not send them back to unbelievers. They are not lawful for them, nor are infidels lawful for believing women.

    • Sister Cece Says:

      Having been already estabilshed ina marriage especially with responsibility of children is much more difficult to divorce than those who marry nonbelievers. These are clearly 2 different situations. May Allah may it easy.

  4. naim tuna Says:

    You who give such a fatwas have te fear Allah becose the ijma of scholars is estabilishet that a muslim woman is haram to be maried to a kafir or to stay maried to a kafir if she converts to islam. Anyone who belive that this is alowed becomes a kafir for allowing what Allah has forbiden: And if you know them belivers (the muslim women) do not turn them back to dhe kuffars, no them (muslim woman) are allowed for them and no them (kafirs) are allowed for them. (Mumtehinah) So fear Allah and do not call muslim women to zina, if you want do call kafirs to islam by allowing te muslim women to comitte zina then send your doghters and sisters to find some kafir boyfrend maybe these kafirs convert to islam after having relaitonship with you doghters. Don’t change the rulings of islam and them pretending that you are calling to islam.

  5. Lina Says:

    Think about the fact, that if we divorce because of my (possible) conversion to Islam, there will be at least 30 people who will never even consider Islam as a true religion after that. That includes my husband and children, our parents and siblings and nephews.
    The only reason for that I haven´t converted yet is the question of marriage here. I am happily married and we love each other. I see my family as potential converts.

    But, maybe it´s better to stay as a christian then and still believe in one God. It can´t be right to hurt so many innocent people including my own children.

    And even if I would convert, I couldn´t do it openly or visit the mosque because of other muslims would laugh me out because of my (so far) non-muslim family (and the family is a blessing for me, nothing to laugh at).

    If I was young I would convert and marry a practising muslim, of course. It seems to be that I and many other women have lost “everything” by living our own lives… and God did know that it would go like this.

    If I have to choose between being a muslim or a mother, I choose to be a mother. And wish that my children will later choose the right path – in time!

    • hatfield Says:

      All these problems arise because Islam is a wholistic system. When you try and practise it in a non_Islamic soicety many problems/issues arise.

      So instead of changing Islam to fit fads and fashion. Muslims should construct an Islamic society in the muslim world so people then witness what islam is.

      These marriages issues are not new. Non Muslim women embrcaced Islam during the prophets era whem Muslims were a minority. So we whould follow their example and not re-engineer Islam.

  6. Announcement Books by Sheikh Abdullah Judai - Page 3 Says:

    […] googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1326644231210-0'); }); Here us the fatwa I searched for: WHAT HAPPENS TO A MARRIAGE IF ONE OF THE COUPLE CONVERTS TO ISLAM? | UNITY […]

  7. “Hidden Heart” « Christian Muslim Forum Says:

    […] [3] https://unity1.wordpress.com/2012/01/13/what-happens-to-a-marriage-if-one-of-the-couple-converts-to-i… […]

  8. Daoud Says:

    Thank you for this. Most online discussions of Islam and interfaith marriage overlook my situation. My wife follows a non-Abrahamic (non-kitabi) religion, and I suppose would be classed as an idolator. I would like to convert to Islam, but am unwilling to divorce her. We have a good marriage. She believes what she believes, and lets me believe what I believe.

    I wonder how representative the above viewsare of Islamic jurisprudence. I wish I could see a breakdown by school. We live in a non-Muslim society, but I wonder what law would govern our situation in various Muslim countries.

  9. Brittany Darr Says:

    i have a question, i am a christian woman currently. I plan on taking my shahada and marrying a muslim man. I have a son, from a previous relationship who is not muslim. Due to laws and interactions with his father, my son cannot convert with me without his fathers permission. (highly unlikely) How do i go about that relationship and the holidays involved in christianity? Without my son feeling upset about it. Or like something is wrong.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Trust your instinct, and follow your head and heart to do the right thing and not upset family members. There are many mixed Muslim-Christian families around due to people converting from one faith to another, and they generally manage to avoid friction, celebrate and respect each others’ traditions and festivals, etc. All the best, and may Allah/God be with you!

  10. eab Says:

    my relationship with my wife goes off and on,lately. I told her to leave in my parents house because she sleep in different room. Now i suspect that she might have a muslim man. If so, is there a possibility that our marriage already annulled?Now what happened to us?is there anyone can advice my situation?thank you

  11. Donald Afriyie Says:

    can a Christian man convert and marry a Muslim woman

    • Usama Hasan Says:


    • namirou Says:

      absolutely YES, however if you are previously married under civil law.. then you can be charged of a bigamy case.. there is a new jurisprudence now that penalizes a converted man who enters into a subsequent marriage .. there is a remedy however its a long discussion.. you may want to contact me 0977-2035-730

  12. MMS Says:

    My boyfriend is a Baha’i, so he believes in Muhammad but does not follow Islam. At first I think over time he is willing to convert and become a Muslim. But he believes that we can be together regardless the religions we follow.
    Is it possible for me to be married with him without he convert?
    If I married to him without his conversion and my parents get angry and disown me, is it a sin for me? Appreciate your thought on this.

    • Hatfield Says:

      Bahai are not Muslims, so a Muslim woman’s marriage would not be considered legal under the shariah.

      Also according to most schools of thought, a girl needs her father’s consent to get marriage,unless she has been married before.

      Best to consult a recognised imam in person rather than get answers from anonymous people on the net.

      May Allah guide you to righteousness. Ameen.

      • Usama Hasan Says:

        Thank you, Hatfield. According to the Hanafi school, and adopted by both Siba’i and Zuhayli amongst recent jurists, a woman does not need her father or other male guardian’s permission to marry.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      If you would still like to discuss your situation, please email me privately: dr(dot)usama(dot)hasan(at)gmail(dot)com, thanks.

  13. Jenie Says:

    I’m a Christian women. My husband is a hindu. We do register married. my husband and I have 3 kids now. me and my husband has separated for 14 years. my husband make a women pregnant and living with her with one baby. Later the women leave my husband and go away with the baby. Now my husband have a Malay women and he want to married her and convert to Muslim and divorce me. Please I want to know what I can do now and how is the procedure.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Dear Jenie, I recommend that you seek the advice of a good family lawyer in your area. He or she will be able to advise you about the best course of action with regard to the divorce. As far as I can see, your separated husband’s choices about converting to Islam etc, do *not* affect you in any other way – he will still have to agree to a civil divorce, since you have a registered marriage.

  14. Marilou Padilla Says:

    Is there any law of muslim if the man converted to muslim and marry again although he has his first wife christian and have children and the wife do not nottice that his husband converted to muslim and he dont sustain the needs of his first family and it is legal what should i do

  15. LORMA LOPEZ Says:

    Assalamu alaikum! Can anyone help me with my questions please…..I am a Muslim convert for two years now. I had a previous Catholic marriage but had been separated for more than 22 years now. Is that marriage still valid after I have converted to Islam? If it is still valid, what do I need to do to make it invalid? Assuming it is no longer valid, do I still need a wali when I decide to get married? Should I still need to be given a mahr by my future husband?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      wa ‘alaykum as-salam & apologies for the delay in replying. The main issue sounds like this: your Catholic marriage is likely to be legally recognised in the country where you contracted it. You may need to seek legal advice in order to obtain a divorce or annul the marriage, since divorce is generally prohibited in Catholicism.

      Once you have a divorce or annulment, you may indeed marry again as a Muslim woman, according to Islamic ethics. There is some disagreement on the matter, but I recommend the Hanafi view that you do not need a wali to get married, unless you wish to have one. Also, you are entitled to ask for a mahr or to waive it.

  16. zang Says:

    If Christian girl is married in philippines and fall in love with muslim man and they want make their relationship legal. If she will convert in muslim and can get married with muslim man in abroad.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      You have answered your own question, but please note also that according to the dominant Islamic tradition, a Muslim man may marry a Christian woman without her converting to Islam. She may of course convert to Islam if she wishes.

      I am not familiar with the laws regarding marriage and religion in the Philippines, so please seek advice elsewhere about that.

  17. Sittie Aisha Says:

    My boyfriend now is legally married.He converted to Islam after 3 years from their marriage.His wife is remain christian.after 6 years of being together they decided to end up their relationship to the reason of they don’t understand each other no more.always quarel,until things become more worst.after 2 years of being separated (but they are not legally separated) we meet each other.and oir relationship become deeper and much happier.He proposed a marriage to me in Islam faith.So,then I converted to Islam and we marry through Islam faith.
    Is there marriage still valid?can I carry my husband name?Is his first wife can file a case to us?if she,what kind of case?and about the property that we invested,is his first wife have the right to it? Considering that the time that he converted to islam his first wife didnt know about it.
    Please give an advise.

    Thank you,

    Sincerely yours,
    Sittie Aisha from Philippines

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Salaam. Please seek legal advice from someone who knows the laws about marriage and religious faith in the Philippines. Sorry I am not able to help you more. God be with you.

  18. stitches026 Says:

    My husband and i been married in civil marriage for 14 years,i worked in taiwan for 3 years.we are okay in that past 2 years but suddenly when i got home after my contract,without my consent he converted to muslim to marry another woman,and that woman is also just converted to muslim.Is our civil marriage still valid?can i sue him to court?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      From what you say, it sounds like your civil marriage is indeed still valid. Please get good legal advice in your locality, since I don’t know which country you are in. God be with you.

  19. Jannah Says:


    I am married in paper and separated for 16 years, i am now moslem, would be my marriage as christian will be null and void even without court procedures in Philippines, and can I marry a moslem man without any issues

    thank you

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Salaam. Please seek expert legal advice regarding marriage and religious faith in the Philippines, about which I am not aware. However, it sounds like you should obtain a divorce on paper to end your marriage on paper, before you marry again under the law of the Philippines.

  20. Sammy Says:

    Salam Alaikum, I have been married for 9 years and together 16, My husband and I have 4 children and both have been raised practicing Pentecostal Christians since babys. MY Question is this: if i was to take my shahada and became a revert but my husband remains a Practicing christian will it be legal in the eyes of islam, I have spoken to many muslims who say i will have to leave my Husband but we have such a happy God filled marriage and a secured life our children are well structured and are respectful of islam so is my husband but he refuses to revert as he believes 100% in the father son and holy spirit doctrine. for me the scripture of the bible has led me to islam but it makes no sense breaking a covenant of marriage until our death that we both took before God. Please help me as this is weighing heavy on me and i know Islam to be the trueful. Kindest regards Sammy

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      wa ‘alaykum as-salam. Please read the post above. As per the authoritative fatwa there, you can take the shahada, convert to Islam and remain with your husband, perfectly good and blessed within Islam. May God be with you and your husband. – Usama

  21. julie Says:

    Salam.me and my ex husband plan to annulment.but we don’t have money.he have now gf and plan to marry.me also have bf.and I want convert Muslim..if possible I can marry my Muslim bf if I convert Muslim?and my married to my ex husband is still valid.really I want convert muslim even i dont have bf before.please help me.thank

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Salam. You should legally end or annul your previous marriage before getting married again, otherwise you may be breaking the law in the country where you live. Please seek expert legal advice in your locality.

  22. Abdullah Says:

    My wife and i is separated for 13 years, she has husband now and kid, i am now a converted muslim , what will happen to our civil marriage in the philippines. Can i divorce her in shariah court, and if approve is it recognize by philippine law thanks

  23. Wan P. Says:

    Does anyone have an opinion on the following.

    I am the product of a marriage between a Muslim farther and a Muslim convert, so by birth I would have been recognized as Muslim except my parents were about to divorce and my mother flew back to Europe to give birth and secretly had me also christened before flying back to Malaysia.
    I grew to age 10 in Malaysia as a Muslim and then my mother moved herself and my siblings to the UK after her divorce and the ongoing “Emergency” in Malaysia at the time. While in the UK I was presented as Christian and was constantly at odds with my families abandonment of our previous value system and the imposition of non halal practices.

    The first question.

    1, Am I considered a Muslim who was abandoned by his father and faith or am I a christian who thought he was a Muslim.

    This is enough for now but the plot gets worse!

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Sounds to me like you were brought up as a Muslim until age 10 at least. Assuming you’re an adult now, it really does not matter, since what is important now is what you freely believe and choose to practise in terms of religious or spiritual tradition, if any. God be with you!

  24. جميلة ميخائيل Says:

    Reblogged this on No More Hurting People Peace and commented:
    Thank you for this great and thoughtful article 🙂 I always thought it was insane for people to get divorced simply because one person became a Muslim since Islam places such a high importance on family.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Thank you. I would be very interested in Shia jurisprudence on the above matter, although note that some of the fatwa bodies referenced above have a very small Shia representation sometimes.

  25. HannyBusra Says:

    Salaam, thank you very much for writing this article, which has brought some peace to my heart.

    I have a question, which I would be grateful to receive your opinion:

    I am Muslim female and married a convert to Islam and since living together, have found that he practices in a completely different way to me. For example, I strongly believe in praying 5 times a day, and he does not believe it is compulsory.

    I am learning everyday, that there are some fundamental things we greatly differ on. I have been focussing on this a lot recently as I feel afraid, and not sure if I have done wrong by marrying someone who was still finding his way with Islam. I know if I don’t focus on these things, and allow him to find Islam in his own way, then we have few problems. But we discuss it everyday because I feel strongly I have done wrong and failed somewhere by praying someone new to Islam.

    I fear that he will move further away from Islam and maybe it was a phase for him and I should have waited a few more years or let it go. I am not sure whether, I should keep going or finish things before my fear becomes a reality.

    Have I done wrong by marrying a convert who is still trying to understand Islam and may find it is not for him.

    I am overthinking as I can’t possibly predict what the future holds but my love for Allah is turning in to fear of Allah and I feel there were signs that I should have waited but at the time I felt the right thing to do was get married.

    I understand over thinking leads to confusion and is no benefit to anyone but with matters like this, I feel there is very little guidance or asssitance.

    Thank you

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Assalamu ‘alaykum. Thank you for your question. From what you’ve described, I’m sure that you did the right thing in getting married. My advice (as an imam for over 30 years): follow your heart, and encourage your husband to follow his. But by all means do discuss your understandings of Islam with each other, in a loving, civilised and polite manner, and learn together about faith, religion and spirituality to deepen your understanding. Life is a continuous journey to God, so keep praying for divine guidance in your journeys and trust that the divine will looks after you. You certainly should not be considering divorce or anything like that, simply on the basis of your differing interpretations of Islam. And, if it’s any consolation, there are many couples in similar positions to yours. May Allah be with you both, and bless and guide you both always!

  26. momshieblogger Says:

    My husbands plans to convert to Muslim. I am a 100% Catholic believer by birth so does he. Is it okay if I don’t convert to Islam. I don’t have anything against their belief and I think Islam is a great religion. I was wondering, we are married under civil law, does it void it?Can he just go ahead and remarried if he wants to? How about my kids?What religion does they follow?With inheritances does this void my children as legal heirs in any case he converts himself to Islam?Thank you.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      1) You do not need to convert to Islam, unless you wish to. The Qur’an is very clear: “There is no compulsion in religion.” (2:256)

      2) I don’t know which country you are in, but if your husband converts to Islam, this should not affect your civil marriage in any country: by definition, civil marriage is not religious marriage, so a change of religion should not affect it at all.

      3) Since his conversion to Islam will not void your civil marriage, he cannot get remarried to someone else, unless (i) the two of you divorce, or (ii) polygamy (in this case, a husband having multiple wives) is legal in your country.

      4) Your children will follow whatever their parents teach them until they become adults, when they are free to choose their own paths in life. Hence, the two of you (parents) should discuss amongst yourselves and agree as to what religious teaching you impart to your children.

      5) According to some Muslims, only Muslim children (& a Muslim wife) can inherit from a Muslim father. However, according to other Muslims, this is not the case and non-Muslim children (& wife) can inherit from a Muslim father. Elsewhere on this blog, you will find a fatwa stating the second view.

      May God bless you all!

  27. Adele Says:

    Maybe can help me?
    I am married. Have 2 kids (10 and 13 years old). 3 years before i convert to Islam. Husband does not prevent me from practicing my faith, can i stay with him or must divorce?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As the fatwas in the above article state, you are perfectly entitled to stay with him and enjoy a full, happy married life. There is no reason or need whatsoever to even think about divorce. May God bless you all!

  28. ellebara hussein Says:

    I am christian woman working in middle east for 2 years and legally married in Philipines. I have a Muslim man. he asked me to mary him. I want to covert to Islam. after my convertion is there any possibility I can marry my Muslim man here in the middle east? what will happened to my marriage in the Philippines? please advise.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      From what you describe, it would be illegal for you to marry the Muslim man in the Middle East whilst you are legally married in the Philippines: this would be illegal and breaking the law in both the Philippines and in your Middle East country. If you wish to marry this Muslim man, you will need to end your Philippines marriage, i.e. either by divorce or annulment, and then you would be free to marry the Muslim man in the Middle East. May God bless you and make matters easy for you.

  29. juwayriya ahmed Says:

    assalamu alaykum, i was marry a christian man since july 22,2003 we have kids and i work in abroad start january 22,2013 after 3 years in abroad i comeback my country he is not faithfull our marriage when i comeback my country he have story he cheating me, then i convert islam last january 25 i graduate level one and hamdulilah im completely islam now.. what if i want to marry one single muslim man i can marry him????

    • juwayriya ahmed Says:

      what if my husband dont want to sign any papers for annulment, what can i do?? i keep with him even his a christiam and im a new muslim now…

      • Usama Hasan Says:

        I advise you to get appropriate legal advice for ending your marriage where you live, if indeed that is still what you wish to do.

        But as per the fatwa above, Islam does not prevent you from remaining married to your Christian husband, if you so wish.

  30. ginte Says:

    What happens with new baby in family like this, when woman is converting to Islam and man is still non Muslim? Baby is automatically muslim, or get fathers faith?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      This is up to the parents to decide and agree, in terms of which religion(s), if any, they will bring the baby up with. Islam is not a race or tribe, so religious affiliations are not automatically passed down.

      A separate Islamic teaching states that all babies are born sinless and upon a natural, God-given state with the capacity for natural faith in God, unless parents and teachers intervene in a negative way.

  31. Rosely Says:

    Why is it that example given , question asked and discussion are always based on a wife converting to Islam but the husband remain
    non Muslim but not otherwise?

    Is there any special reason.?

    I believe the issue faced and solution should be the same for all cases regardless if either the wife or husband converted and the other did not.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Thank you for the observation. This was actually answered in the first paragraph of the blog post, if you re-read it carefully: traditionally, there was no problem with a Muslim husband being married to a non-Muslim wife; the other way around was problematic.

      That’s why this post and the fatwas cited cover both cases, but understandably focus on the case of the wife converting to Islam.

  32. Niyi ISAAC NTANAAN Says:

    marriage is once life happens and marriage was there before religion so let all understand that we all worship the same god,please there’s are some parents who don’t want their children to get married to different trebles so what of that one too

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      I agree. Qur’an 49:13 beautifully states that God created us in nations and tribes for us to learn to know each other (and not to hate or despise each other).

  33. raeha Says:

    i m an indian girl nd i m hindu ….i love a boy who is muslim i want to convert to muslim …but i don’t have any guidance …i want to ask do i need to seek permission from smone to accept islam …nd wht guidlines do i need to follow !! plz hlp

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      If you wish to convert to Islam, you may do so very easily by simply declaring, “There is no god but God. Muhammad is the Messenger of God.” You may wish to say this in Arabic, in which case a Muslim friend or local imam at the mosque will be able to help you.

      Many mosques will give you a certificate of conversion to Islam, and in some countries you can register your change of religion. It all depends on where you live and what the local laws and customs are.

    • Goran Omar Bockman Says:

      Dear Raeha

      Please study this online leaflet which will give you the answers to most of your questions. Copy and paste the address into your browser:

  34. Amy Says:

    Iam a christian.and i was thingking to convert as a muslim.can i get a devorce to my christian marriage? If iam a muslim?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As per the fatwa above, your conversion would not automatically mean that you are Islamically divorced from your Christian husband.

      If you wish to divorce your husband, you will need to follow the law of your country and get appropriate legal advice.

  35. Najmah Says:

    Salam brother and sister

    Ive been married before to a christian man we have 3 kids then i decided to convert as muslim i tried to conviced him and teach my husband about islam but he doesnt want. After 2 years we both decided to live separately but were not annuled yet coz its hard in the philippines. Can u help me what i need to do to make our annulment ligalize?i wanted also to change my passport name into my islamic name but what are the requirement? I want to bring back my last name in my passport but dont know what to do please help me. Thank you so much

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Salam. Please consult a lawyer or other legal help in the Philippines for these issues. My only comment is that as the fatwas in this post show, Islam allows you to stay married to your Christian husband, if you both wish that. God bless!

  36. 5 pillars of islam Says:

    I do not know if it’s just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering issues
    with your website. It appears as though some of the text in your content are running
    off the screen. Can someone else please comment and let me know if this is happening to them too?
    This may be a problem with my browser because I’ve had this happen previously.


  37. Goran Omar Bockman Says:

    The Prophet (saws) allowed his own Daughter to remain married to her kafir husband for six years, until he eventually reverted to Islaam. Also’Umar and Ali, two of the rightly guided Khalifas, allowed marriages between kafir and muslim(a) to continue. That’s Enough for me!

  38. If You’re Husband Isn’t Muslim… – Keep Your Good Heart Says:

    […] also wanted to share some of the comments on the Unity1 WordPress site that I feel are pertinent to this discussion, but I encourage my readers to read all of them […]

  39. fawad ibrahim Says:

    my wife is converted Muslim. we had my daughter 4 years old. and we divorced after 6 years. she not allowed me to meet my kid and stay with her non Muslims parent home,. i file a custody case recently. and wana know is there any rules i get back my kid?? wife stays muslim.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Islamic ethics and law promotes what is best for your daughter and her parents, which usually means fair access to both parents, as long as there are no good reasons why this shouldn’t be the case. This agrees with local laws in most countries. So apart from contacting your ex-wife via mediators, you may need to go through the courts or legal process in your country, or family mediators. Allah be with you and bless all of your family.

  40. Amos (Umar) Says:

    Salaam, i converted to Islam and became a Muslim.. I have a wife with three kids, she has not supported me since i converted to Islam, always told me that i have changed to someone new and that she is loosing her feelings for me, i am new to Islam and i love the religion, i love Allah, she told me that she will leave me as i continue with my faith Islam, i fear for the breakdown and for my kids. I love her, but i cannot choose between her and my faith, please help me to do the right thing

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Dear Amos/Umar, Salaams. I recommend a good marriage mediator or counsellor, especially one who understands the importance of faith and religion to believers. Before that, try loving, honest conversations with your wife. Do all the things with her and as a family that were positive and good for both of you before you became Muslim. Your conversion to, and practice of, Islam, should enhance and improve things, not cause problems. This is because Islam promotes love, mercy, compassion, kindness, spirituality and family values – all of these qualities are directed towards parents, spouses, children and everyone. May Allah bless you and your family, and heal any rifts! Btw I recommend Sheikh Hamza Yusuf’s writings and online videos giving advice on family issues and on developing our spirituality and improving our hearts.

  41. Helen lubaton Says:

    I am a christian and married with a christain man,we are separated for more than two.years but not legally separated(no separation paper. If I convert into islam can I marry with a muslim man?what happen to.my first marriage?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Dear Helen, This depends on the laws in the country where you live. But almost certainly, you will need to get a legal divorce from your first husband, before you can marry anyone else, whether Christian or not.

  42. Kate Says:

    I’m married in phils,but 5 years separate but not legally separated…can i get married here in Saudi Arabia with my pakistani bf even if I’m not legally separated from Philippines..i converted Islam more than two years already

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As-salamu ‘alaykum, Kate. Please get legal advice: it will be illegal for you to marry your bf in Philippines or Saudi, because you are legally still married to your first husband, even if you are separated. However, the authorities in Saudi may be able to annul (faskh) your first marriage on the basis that you are now a Muslim, and your first husband is not (presumably). This is because the authorities in Saudi do not allow a Muslim woman to marry a non-Muslim man. May Allah be with you and bless you always.

  43. Reynolds Says:

    The way I see it, islam is like the gangster organization Yakuza of Japan. Once you are in, you cannot get out. You live by their laws which favour the leadership.

  44. Hannah Says:

    Salam, Me & my husband was married in catholic ceremony. Our marriage is registered in civil registry. We both converted to Islam but suddenly after 7 years, we began to fell out of love due to our family clan’s problem. He always nag at me because of his problem with my family. We keep yelling on each other and now it’s so hard to bring the love back. He already married another Muslim woman. We’ve been separated for 2 years and I don’t feel I need him in my life anymore. I may not be practicing Islam perfectly but I still pray in Islamic way if i feel it. He said TALAQ on me 3x but he did not file any formal documents to nullify our marriage.Would that mean that our marriage is already void? Kindly clarify.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As-salamu ‘alaykum, Hannah. Since you’ve been separated for 2 years & your husband has pronounced talaq, you are divorced according to Islamic tradition. However, legally you are still married due to the Catholic ceremony and civil registration. I advise you to get legal advice in your country: you may need to take the necessary legal steps to end or nullify your marriage, so that you have a clean break from your marriage, legally speaking. Without this, you could face financial claims in the future from your ex-husband, and also complications if you wish to marry someone else. (In most countries, you will not be legally allowed to get married again without a legal divorce or annulment of your previous marriage.) May Allah be with you, was-salam.

  45. Nuryn aaira shakira Says:

    Asamalaikum brother/sister i wanna some question and need help.im convert to islam lat year.im married in church year 2013.me and my x husband not together anymore.now i have a muslim boyfriend.can i marry my muslim boy friend even i havent annul my x husband.. thanks for the help…

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As-salamu ‘alaykum, Nuryn. If you and your husband have agreed to separate and divorce, you are divorced according to Islamic tradition. However, legally you are probably still married due to the church ceremony in 2013. I advise you to get legal advice in your country: you may need to take the necessary legal steps to end or nullify your marriage, so that you have a clean break from your marriage, legally speaking. Without this, you could face financial claims from your ex-husband in the future, and also complications if you wish to marry someone else. (In most countries, you will not be legally allowed to get married again without a legal divorce or annulment of your previous marriage.) May Allah be with you, was-salam.

  46. Tareque Says:

    I am writing this with a very heavy heart. I have been married to my wife for 13 years and we have 2 lovely kids whom I adore and who love me unconditionally. My wife was a Hindu and converted to Islam when we married. She practised Islam for a few years after marriage but now says that she does not believe in God any more. She practises no religion.
    We have drifted apart from each other and now barely talk to each other but we are respectful of each other and do not fight.
    Is it OK for me to stay with her? I want my children to have an islamic upbringing which I want to provide for them and she seems to be ok with it.
    Please tell me what I should do. I do not want to stay away from my children.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Assalamu ‘alaykum. I have come across many couples in similar situations. It is certainly fine, Islamically, for you to stay with her, just as the fatwas above show that it would be fine for a Muslim woman to remain married to a non-Muslim husband, especially if she fears an adverse effect on her children. The bottom line is that it is up to the two of you to decide how to proceed with your marriage: Islam does not prescribe a particular course of action. Religious views, like political ones, change over time and differences are not an automatic reason for divorce. So it’s up to the two of you to decide how to take things forward, in the best interests of yourselves and your children. I would advise istikhara prayer, consultation and following your heart. May Allah be with you.

  47. Mary Says:

    Im a married Christian woman and also my husband. We have 2 kids and our relationship is complicated because he cheated me. Not once but 3 times. He always promise me that he will not do it again but still his not change until he use drugs and hurt me physically im not happy to get married because i was force to be married because of my eldest son but me and my husband is cousin my grandfather and his grandfather is 1st cousin they told my parents to break up with him and let support the child. But my mother do not agree. For my 27 years of leaving in the world i am not happy i go in random church but still i dont fill i was one of them. Until i decided to work abroad here in qatar and when i work here i found a man whos islam. I fell in love with him im comfortable being with him. We share our problems. We are so much happy but one day his family call him and they dont like me because im married and im not islam. I told him im willing to convert an islam not because of them because i wanted too and i feel like maybe i find my happiness in islam world. I been reading quran true internet because i still dont understand arabic. Please help me about my problem if im welcome to islam world and i want to divorce my husband but in the philippines we dont allowed there. So maybe i found a small hope here. I want to marry my islam man. Please help this problem thank you so much.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As you said, divorce may not be allowed in Catholic-majority countries like the Philippines. But your marriage may be annulled (faskh) in a Muslim-majority country like Qatar, especially if you convert to Islam. I advise you to seek advice on this from family lawyers or family courts in Qatar. May God bless you.

  48. Thess Says:

    I married my husband in his adopted Muslim name. Is the marriage valid?

  49. semi Says:

    I am SEMI by name. Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony. I have been rejected by my husband after 10 years of marriage just because another woman had a spell on him and he left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address dr.usmanspellcaster@gmail.com , have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a woman had a spell on my husband and he told me that he will help me and after 5 days that i will have my husband back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my husband. Thanks for dr.usman His email: dr.usmanspellcaster@gmail.com OR.His WhatsApp Number:+2348064080208…

  50. relationships dating Says:

    try this


  51. Ryan Says:

    i am christian, sense we don’t have annulment in the philippines,. can i convert balik islam so that i can file annulment, and merry again,.

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      I am unable to answer that, since I don’t know much about the legal system in the Philippines, especially as it relates to Christian and Muslim marriages, etc. I would advise you to obtain expert advice from people who do know about the law in your country. Thank you

  52. Warlyn cariaga Says:

    What if I’m woman married but I embrace Islamic but before converting I already seperate to him but not divorce we not staying at one house. If I convert can I divorce him? What is the process for it?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Please consult the local lawyers or courts in your area about this question. Thank you

      • Usama Hasan Says:

        PS in some Muslim-majority countries, an Islamic or civil court might invalidate your first marriage if you convert to Islam, enabling you to marry a Muslim man. But this is not always the case, so you must consult your local lawyers or courts in the country where you live. Or you can simply get a divorce from your first husband, especially since you are separated from him. But in most countries, you will be breaking the law if you are married to two men at the same time. Thank you

  53. syed Says:

    Assalaam Alaikum. A Christian couple got separated (not divorced) 2 years ago, and living in separate houses, due to differences and problems in their marriage but did not want to go for legal registered divorce due to children issue. They have arrangement for children to see both parents. Now, the woman got converted to Muslim. Can she do a shariah marriage (simple Nikkah without registration) to a Muslim man? Thanks

  54. Joy Says:

    Hi. My boyfriend at the moment is married by civil. He just recently reverted and now we are planning to get married, me as his second wife under sharia law while he is legally married in another country. Is that possible?

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      Thank you for your comment. This is only possible in countries that recognise bigamy or polygamy, eg under sharia law. I advise you to get legal advice in your country. Thank you

  55. Sarah Says:

    I was Hindu, American, married an outcaste in India, then the only office who agreed to register the marriage gave me their original copy of the registration papers, and said that they would deny ever having married us if queried, and that all of the documents are with me. This made it impossible to obtain a divorce after I converted to Islam, and he did not want to, being American and not able to travel back and forth to India for a marriage that doesnt exist, so I am neither married nor divorced. Can I remarry since obtaining a legal divorce is impossible? Jazzak Alahu Khayr

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      As-salamu ‘alaykum. I recommend you get good legal advice in the USA about this. From what you say, you were married but this might be legally impossible to prove, if the register office will not confirm it. Also, have you agreed to divorce or separate from your husband after converting to Islam? A good imam in the USA should be able to help you with your religious requirements. If you would like further advice, please write to me: dr(dot)usama(dot)hasan(at)gmail(dot)com, thank you.

  56. Jasmine Says:

    Can i sue my husband begamy? He is a Muslim but im not then we get married to a non Muslim ceremony in Philippines. Can i sue my husband begamy if he gets married again. He is not supporting us ever since im the one who worked for the family and now he is in Philippines and declined to do his obligations to us. Can i dont want to divorce him and im not allowing bim also to get married again.

  57. Lynn Says:

    What if a non muslim woman separated from the husband or they are no more in relationship converts to islam and she wish to marry a muslim man..is it posible for her?
    Is their marriage will be valid?thank u

  58. Aizel Dela Cruz Says:

    I was converted to islam for 6 months and i am married to non muslim long time and i we are separated already for 4 years can i marry again to my muslim boyfriend? and how? hope someone can help me.. because in the labour they are always asking my divorce paper but i dont have.. please someone help me

  59. Rowena Lazo Says:

    I really can’t understand if a converted women and separated with her Christian husband can marry with islam men even shes not divorce/annulled..

  60. Abdulkareem Says:

    this council has no shame Allahu ul musta’an

  61. Red muslima Says:

    I would like to ask a woman – non muslim who is still married in civil become pregnant by a muslim man who has no knowledge that his gf is not married..wha t advise can you give

    • Usama Hasan Says:

      I do not understand your question, unless you mean “married” instead of “not married” in the last line. In the latter case, the woman may wish to tell her bf, or arrange to get a civil divorce so that she is no longer married.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: