What are the kinds of marriage? When an irregular marriage can become valid?
What are the effects of irregular and void marriage?
When a marriage become Void?
Marriage was a custom of other prophets and Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) also re-instituted and passed on to his ummah. Various ugly forms of marriage were present before Islam. On the one hand, Islam has banned those ugly forms of marriage, and on the other hand, Islam has not recognized celibacy. In fact, Islam has introduced its own concept of marriage. Through this concept, Islam has stressed on development of matrimonial relationships through marriage contract and has declared that such contract should be based on love, affection and peace.
(2) Kinds Of marriage
According to Islamic law, followings are kinds of marriage:
(i) Valid marriage
(ii) Irregular marriage
(iii) Void marriage
(i) Valid Marriage
Valid marriage can be defined as that marriage, which not only fulfills all legal and Shari requirements.
But also fulfills all essentials of marriage.
(ii) Irregular Marriage
Irregular marriage can be defined as that marriage, which is though not void, yet is not valid too.
(iii) Void Marriage
According to Muhammadan Law, void marriage is no marriage at all. It does not create any civil rights or obligations between parties, and off-springs of such marriage are illegitimate.
(3) Essentials Or Conditions Of Valid Marriage
Followings are main essentials of valid marriage:
(iii) Proposal & acceptance in same meeting
(iv) Persons of opponent sex
(v) Major parties
(vi) Free parties
For valid marriage, it is essential that there should be a proposal by or on behalf of one party to another party.
For valid marriage, it is necessary that proposal of one party should be accepted by or on behalf of other party.
(iii) Proposal & Acceptance In Same Meeting
For valid marriage, it is essential that proposal and acceptance should be made in same meeting.
(iv) Persons Of Opponent Sex
Only a marriage between two persons of opposite sex can be valid marriage.
(v) Major Parties
For valid marriage, it is necessary the parties to marriage-contract should be major.
(vi) Free Parties
For valid marriage, it is essential that parties to marriage-contract should be free. However, a male
Muslim can conduct marriage with a slave girl.
According to Sunni schools of thought, marriage should be solemnized in presence of two male witnesses or one male and two female witnesses, and such witnesses would be adult and sane. Contrary to this, witnesses are not necessary for valid marriage according to Shia school of thought.
For valid marriage, it is necessary that there should be some consideration for marriage-contract, and such consideration is dower.
(4) Conversion Of irregular Marriage into Valid Marriage
A marriage is considered irregular marriage due to accidental circumstances. If circumstances are either removed or changed, irregular marriage can become valid marriage. In following cases, irregular marriage can become valid marriage:
(i) Marriage with fifth wife
(ii) Marriage through unlawful conjunction
(iii) Marriage during iddat-period
(iv) Marriage with idolatress or fire-worshiper
(i) Marriage with Fifth Wife
Marriage with fifth wife is irregular. However, such marriage can be converted into valid marriage if husband divorces any of existing four wives.
(ii) Marriage Through Unlawful Conjunction
If a man contracts second marriage with his first existing wife’s sister, such marriage is irregular. However, this irregular marriage becomes lawful when man divorces his first wife.
(iii) Cessation Of Impediment
If some marriage is irregular due to solemnization of marriage during iddat-period, such impediment ceases on expiration of iddat-period.
(iv) Marriage With Idolatress Or Fire-worshiper
When a male Muslim contracts marriage with idolatress or fire-worshiper, such marriage becomes valid when wife adopts Islam, Christianity or Jewish religion. Even when female Muslim contracts marriage with idolater or fire-worshiper, such marriage becomes valid when husband adopts Islam, Christianity or Jewish religion.
(5) Effects Of Irregular Marriage
Followings are effects of irregular marriage:
(i) Effects before consummation
(ii) Effects after consummation
(i) Effects Before Consummation
Before consummation, no effects arise from irregular marriage.
(ii) Effects After Consummation
After consummation, following effect arise from irregular marriage:
(a) Wife’s right of dower
(b) Spouse’s right of inheritance
(c) Observance of Iddat-period
(d) Legitimacy of Children
(e) Children’s right of inheritance
(a) Wife’s Right Of Dower
(a) Wife’s right of dower
Wife is entitled to proper or specified dower.
(b) Spouse’s Right Of Inheritance
Irregular marriage does not create mutual right of inheritance between husband and wife.
(c) Observance Of Iddat-period
Wife has to observe iddat-period. And iddat-period is three terms of menses not only in case of death of husband, but also in case of divorce.
(d) Legitimacy Of Children
Children, who are born out of irregular marriage, are legitimate.
(e) Children’s Right Of Inheritance
Children, who are born out of irregular marriage, are entitled to inheritance of their father and mother.
(6) Effects Of Void Marriage
Followings are effects of void marriage:
(i) Sexual intercourse
(ii) Mutual rights & obligations
(iii) Status of husband & wife
(iv) Illegitimate children
(v) Mutual right of inheritance
(i) Sexual Intercourse
Sexual intercourse between parties of void marriage remains illegal and amounts to zina.
(ii) Mutual Rights & Obligations
For both parties of void marriage, no mutual rights and obligations are born out of void marriage.
(iii) Status Of Husband & Wife
Through void marriage, both parties do not acquire status of husband and wife.
(iv) Illegitimate Children
Children, who are born out of void marriage, are illegitimate
(v) Mutual Right Of Inheritance
Both parties of void marriage do not acquire right of inheritance. It reveals that death of one mutual right of inheritance. It reveals that death of one party does not make other surviving party entitled to inheritance of deceased party.
(7) When Is A Marriage Irregular?
Due to different reasons, a marriage can be declared irregular. In following circumstances, a marriage is considered irregular:
(i) Marriage in absence of witnesses
(ii) Fifth marriage
(iii) Marriage with follower of prohibited religion
(iv) Marriage through unlawful conjunction
(v) Marriage during iddat-period
(i) Marriage In Absence Of Witnesses
According to Sunni schools of thought, marriage is irregular when it is solemnized in absence of witnesses.
(ii) Fifth Marriage
Marriage is irregular when a man conducts fifth marriage in presence of four existing wives.
(iii) Marriage With Follower Of Prohibited Religion
Marriage is irregular when marriage is contracted with some follower of prohibited religion. For example, male Muslim’s marriage with idolatress or fire-worshiper is irregular marriage. Similarly, female Muslim’s marriage with idolater or fire-worshiper is irregular marriage.
(iv) Marriage Through Unlawful Conjunction
Marriage is irregular when marriage is contracted through unlawful conjunction. For example, if a man contracts second marriage with his first existing wife’s sister, such marriage is irregular.
(v) Marriage During Iddat
Marriage is irregular when marriage is contracted during iddat-period.
(8) When Is A Marriage Void?
In following cases, marriage is considered void marriage:
(i) Plurality of husbands
(i) Plurality of Husbands
When husband of a woman is alive and she is not divorced by him, marriage with such woman is void.
Marriage with a woman is void when such woman is prohibited by reason of consanguinity. Following women are prohibited by reason of consanguinity for a man:
(a) Man’s mother
(b) Man’s grand mother (how high soever)
(c) Man’s daughter
(d) Man’s grand daughter (how low soever)
(e) Man’s full, consanguine or uterine daughter
(f) Man’s niece
(g) Man’s great niece (how low soever)
(h) Man’s paternal aunt
(i) Man’s great paternal aunt (how high soever)
(j) Man’s maternal aunt
(k) Man’s great maternal aunt (how high soever)
Marriage with a woman is void when such woman is prohibited by reason of affinity. Following women are prohibited by reason of affinity for a man:
(a) Mother of man’s wife
(b) Grand mother of man’s wife (how high soever)
(c) Daughter of man’s wife
(d) Grand daughter of man’s wife (how low soever)
(e) Wife of man’s father
(f) Wife of man’s paternal grand father (how high (1) soever)
(g) Wife of man’s son
(h) Wife of man’s son’s son (how low soever)
(i) Wife of man’s daughter’s son (how low soever)
Marriage with a woam is void when such woman is prohibited by reason of fosterage. However, man can conduct marriage with followings:
(a) man’s sister’s foster-mother
(b) man’s foster sister’s mother
(c) man’s foster son’s sister
(d) man’s foster brother’s sister