His mother forced him to sign the divorce paper of his wife
Fatwa No: 118112

Question

I got nikah'ed almost two years ago against the will of my Inlaws.last January my mother in law forced my husband to divorce me. For the whole year in between our Nikah and January this year , she has spent Day and Night screaming at him, blackmailing him, kicked him out of the house more than a couple of times. During this period she has had an Angina attack and has a blood pressure issue along with thyroid cancer. So before I arrived to the US in December she started to get worse and than she started hitting my husband , sometimes with shoes and belts or whatever she could get her hands on. I would like to highlight that her temper is out of control and she can be quite intolerable. Later after dealing with all these things my husband decided to move out of the house, as soon as she found that out ( after reading our private online conversations and emails) she locked him in the house along with his father and forced him to sign a paper written by her (to divorce me) and held a knife to her self threatning him that she would kill herself if he did not sign it. My husband who generally is a very cool minded person and doesnt ever use a high tone got really worried and keeping his mother;s health and abnormal behaviour and mind signed the paper. He was so distraught at the time that he punched a hole through the wall and barely remembers what happened. Most of the things that took place that day are quite vague to him and these things ive heard from his mother over and over again. He signed the paper(which was written by the mother contained my name and his and the word divorce three times) but only to control the situation , he is a person with a weak heart and has suffered from a hole in his heart for 20 years. His mother has been quite unreasonable and has made our lives more than just difficult. (even under the severe circumstances my husband had NO INTENTIONS of divorcing me, and he did not utter the word divorce ) please answer according to hanafi FIQH.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

 

According to the Hanafi School of jurisprudence, being forced is not an obstacle for divorce taking place. For instance, Al-Kaasaani  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: The divorce of a husband who is forced to divorce his wife takes place according to our School.”

However, since your husband had only signed the divorce paper, and he did not intend divorce, then this divorce does not take place, because writing the word divorce is among the metaphors of divorce unless the husband addresses his writing to the wife, and in your case your husband did not address you with divorce. Rather, he signed your divorce which his mother had written, but he had no intention of initiating divorce, so this divorce does not take place.

This is the conclusion of the Hanafi School of jurisprudence, and this is also the view of the majority of the scholars  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them; divorce does not take place in the above mentioned situation because of being forced and just because of writing the word divorce without having the intention of divorce.

For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 90056 and 84056.

Allaah Knows best.

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