Average amount of the dowry
Fatwa No: 90124

  • Fatwa Date:8-6-2005 - Jumaadaa Al-Oula 2, 1426
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Question

How much is an average for the dowry?

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 dowry is not determined in Islamic Law. Some scholars  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them stated that the jurists  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them agreed in a consensus that there is no maximum amount for it; however, they differed about its minimum amount. Nonetheless, the most preponderant opinion is that there is no minimum amount for it as well. The dowry depends on the agreement between the spouses on what is beneficial, like clothes and shoes even if their price is less than a Dirham.

Therefore, on one hand, it is permissible for a husband to give a ton of gold to his wife as a dowry if he is rich. Allaah Says (what means): {But if you want to replace one wife with another and you have given one of them a great amount [in gifts], do not take [back] from it anything. Would you take it in injustice and manifest sin?}[Quran 4:20]

On the other hand, it is also permissible for the husband to give the wife a ring of iron, as the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) told a poor Companion  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him who did not have anything to give as a dowry to his wife: "Give her even a ring of iron." [Al-Bukhari and Muslim] So it is not possible to set a middle amount of dowry since it is not determined by Islamic Law.

Finally, it should be noted that Islam urged us to give small dowries. The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “The blessing of a woman is in making her engagement easy and in making her dowry affordable.

Allaah Knows best.

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