Praise be to Allah.
contract is completed with the proposal and acceptance. The proposal is when
the wife’s guardian says, “I give So and so to you in
marriage.” The acceptance is when the groom says, “I accept” or “I accept
marriage to So and so.” It is not essential for it to
be in these exact words; rather the marriage contract is completed by whatever
phrases indicate marriage.
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have
mercy on him) said: The basic principle is that all contracts are completed by
means of whatever signifies them according to custom, whether it is in the
words mentioned or otherwise, in the case of the marriage contract and other
contracts. This is the correct opinion and it is the view favoured
by Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him).
End quote from ash-Sharh al-Mumti‘, 12/40
And he (may
Allah have mercy on him) said: Some of the scholars stipulated specific phrases
in some contracts and said that they must be used, as in the marriage contract
for example, where they said that it is essential (for the guardian) to say: “I
give to you in marriage…”, and for (the groom) to say, “I accept.”
say that all contracts are completed by means of whatever phrases signify them
according to custom. This view is the one that is correct, and this is the view
favoured by Shaykh al-Islam
Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah
have mercy on him), because transactions are not acts of worship in which one
should adhere strictly to what has been narrated; rather they are transactions
between people. So whatever people regard as a sale is a sale, whatever they
regard as a pledge (or mortgage) is a pledge (or mortgage), whatever they
regard as a waqf (endowment) is a waqf,
and whatever they regard as marriage is marriage.
opinion is that there is no specific format for any contract; rather the
contract is completed by means of that which signifies it, and no one can prove
that there is any difference between sale transactions and other types of
transactions. If they say, for example, that Allah mentioned marriage by using
the word nikaah, we say: likewise, He mentioned sales
by using the word bay‘; are you saying that it is essential to say, “Bi‘tu (I have sold)”? They will say that this is not
essential, as buying and selling are done by whatever wording signifies that
according to custom, with a proposal and acceptance (after the proposal).
End quote from ash-Sharh al-Mumti‘, 8/101
If the father of
the girl said: “I have given my daughter in marriage to So
and so,” and the husband responded in a way that signified acceptance, then the
proposal and acceptance have taken place.
are essential conditions for marriage which must be met: there should be
consent from both spouses, and the marriage contract should be done by the
woman’s guardian issuing his proposal in the presence of two witnesses. If
these conditions were met, then the marriage has been done and the guardian
does not have the right to retract it or annul it unless there is a reason that
makes annulment permissible, such as annulment due to a physical defect (in one
of the spouses) or annulment for going against the conditions.
Our advice is to
refer the matter to a scholar whom you trust, so that he can listen to the
guardian, and the husband and wife.
We ask Allah to
help and guide us and you.
And Allah knows best.