Marrying off a Disabled Girl with Down Syndrome
Fatwa No: 399355

Question

Is someone who has a disabled child (the child is 17 and has very bad Down syndrome to the point she relies on her parents with help for the toilet , eating , bathing and so on and cannot communicate properly except a few words such as no, eat etc) allowed to get her married? With her current mental state, she cannot express acceptance or deny consent and is similar to that of a small child. She cannot express consent for anything and cannot look after herksef at all. Even my two year old has a better mental understanding.
When hearing they wanted to do this, I said this would be haraam as if she’s not even required to wear hijab because of her condition and has no accountability with Allah in that sense, she would not be allowed to marry like this. But then looking into it I have no been able to find any information on this topic and I’m worried I may have said this wrongly.

Answer

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

It is permissible for the guardian of the girl who is infected with this disease in the said manner, to marry her off, if there is a benefit for her in marrying her off. Rather, this is a must if it appears that she needs a husband or that doctors say that marriage is helpful for her cure.

Sharh al-Bahjah, which is a book in the Shaafi'i School of jurisprudence reads: "The guardian must marry off the mad girl or the mad man under his guardianship when in need; if there are evident indications, such as if she moves around men, or he moves around women, or if there are hidden indications known by specialist doctors; this is the adopted view."

Allah knows best.

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