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Ruling on divorce at a moment of intense anger


Assalamualaikum My family and I are in a very unfortunate situation. The first day of Ramadan my husband and I had a fight when my husband was extremely angry and couldn’t control the words he uttered and did not understand the consequences of them when he uttered the word I talaq you. He was very angry and out of his senses. This is the third talaq he has uttered during our 10 years of marriage. He left home thinking that the talaq is valid, while still in anger, he send me the civil-divorce paper - and texted it’s a official now you are divorced referring to the civil-documents. He thought that the talaq he uttered at home was valid, but as we have understood, a talaq uttered in severe anger is not valid, therefore when the text me he wrote now it’s official you are divorced, referring to the civil-divorce papers, still in anger and without the intention of divorce. He was very angry and had not the intention of divorce. Is the divorce valid? Our family is in sorrow and the kids misses their dad, because he is not here before there is clarity whether we’re still married. He was very angry and all of this happens within minutes and he did not have the intention of divorce.


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.

You should know that mere anger does not prevent divorce from taking place, because divorce mostly takes place at times of anger. However, if the person is overtaken by intense anger to the point that he is unaware of what he says, then the divorce doesn't take place. In his Mataalib U’li An-Nuhaa, Ar-Ruhaybaani Al-Hanbali  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: “Divorce of the person in anger and who is not totally unaware does take effect.

Other scholars, such as Ibn Al-Qayyem  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him divides divorce of the person in anger into three cases, stating that in case a man is overtaken with intense anger that he becomes almost insane and thus unable to control his actions, his divorce would not take effect, even if he is aware of what he says.

In this case, we advise you to ask your husband to consult one of the authorities concerned with Muslims’ issues like Islamic centers or jurists in the country where you live, so that the husband could communicate to them his condition of anger when he pronounced divorce while the jurist would ask him about other details he wants to be acquainted with. That is because the husband is the only person who fully knows his condition when he did so, and thus should be the one who asks the question.

Concerning the message sent to you by your husband which reads, “you are now officially divorced”, the mere judgment of divorce by a civil court is not taken into account as shown in a statement by the Assembly of Muslim Jurists in America, rather the words of divorce pronounced by the husband is what should be considered in such cases. We stress the importance of consulting an Islamic Center or orally asking a jurist and working according to their Fatwas.

At this point, we draw your attention to two points:

First, there should be mutual respect and understanding between the spouses as to the problems that they might face in the marital life. Besides, they should be wise and patient when solving such problems and be keen on what keeps intact the stability of the family, especially if they have children. Separation of the parents has a negative impact on the children, as we previously mentioned.

Second, beware of anger since it is from Satan and a door to much evil and corruption. That is why the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) warned us of it.

Allah knows best.

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