Marriage without a Wali (Guardian)
Fatwa No: 85057

Question

I have a question regarding Marriage. A girl was married without a Wali. There were two witnesses and a lawyer who married them. I am very confused cause I read in some pages that marriage like this is not valid and in some pages that it is, cause a girl if she is old enough she can represent her self if she wants so.

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.

According to the view of the majority of Muslim scholars, a woman has no right to marry herself off and if she does so, her marriage is invalid. Only Imam Abu Haneefah is of the view that it is permissible for a woman to marry herself off as long as she is adult, since he compares such action with granting her the right to sell and buy.

But, the opinion of the majority of the Muslim scholars is the most preponderant one.

Allah Says (what means): {And do not marry polytheistic men [to your women] until they believe.} [Quran 2: 221]
Al-Qurtubi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: “This verse is evidence that there is no valid marriage without a guardian.

Allah also Says (what means):

• {So marry them with the permission of their people and give them their due compensation according to what is acceptable.} [Quran 4: 25]

• {And marry the unmarried among you and the righteous among your male slaves and female slaves.} [Quran 24: 32]

Thus, Allah addresses only men, and if women were included, Allah would have mentioned them.

‘Aa’ishah  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  her narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Any woman who marries herself off without her guardian's permission, her marriage is void, her marriage is void, her marriage is void.” [At-Tirmithi and others]

Based on the above, it becomes clear that a woman who marries herself off, her marriage is not valid.

For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 269080, 226429, 83629, and 92758.

Allah knows best.

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