His wife claims that her children from him are illegitimate
Fatwa No: 200749

  • Fatwa Date:28-3-2013 - Jumaadaa Al-Oula 17, 1434
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Question

After nine years of marriage my wife admitted that all her four kids were illegitimate. I divorced her.She requested me to keep it a secret for the sake of kids. More than three years later she has filed a suit for recovery of maintenance of the kids. Before divorce she had taken an oath on Quran that she was innocent. Sometime later a religious scholar advised us to go for Li'aan. She hesitated it. But finally she admitted that the children were illegitimate. Thereafter the divorce occurred. Can she ask for the maintenance of these kids? Can I request the court for DNA test of the kids? Please guide me in the light of the teachings of Islam

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.

The basic principle in this case is that the child is traced back to the husband as he is the owner of the bed, as confirmed in the authentic Sunnah of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ). So the claim of your wife that those children are illegitimate has no consideration as long as you did not hasten to deny them with Li’aan (i.e. a husband and his wife invoke the curse of Allaah on the liar among them when he accuses her of having committed adultery). For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 193277 and 176757.

Moreover, DNA testing is not relied upon by itself in confirming or denying the lineage, as clarified in Fataawa 82709 and 90098.

Therefore, those children are your legitimate children and all the rulings related to sonship are confirmed between you and them, like spending on them, inheritance and the like. Their custody is the right of their mother unless she gets remarried or that there is an impediment which prevents her from taking their custody like being dissolute, in which case, the custody of the children moves to the female who is more deserving according to the order stated by the jurists  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them and which is mentioned in Fatwa 84618.

Allaah Knows best.

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