Husband Saying to His Wife “Take Divorce
Fatwa No: 399409

Question

Does divorce occur if one says to his wife, "Take divorce," without the intention of divorcing her?

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.

The most preponderant opinion in our view is that if the husband says to his wife: “Take Divorce”, then this is not an explicit expression of divorce but a metaphor that can mean divorce and other things. So, divorce does not take place if the husband did not intend it, whether the wife answered her husband saying: “I take it”, or that she did not answer.

Rawdhatu-at-Taalibeen wa ‘Umdatul-Mufteen, authored by an-Nawawi reads:

If he (the husband) says: ‘Take your divorce’, and she replied,"I take it.’, then she is not divorced as long as there was no intention of issuing divorce by the husband saying: “Take it”, or from the wife if his statement means that she was given authorization to divorce herself.” [End of quote]

Ibn Qudaamah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said:

His saying: ‘your matter is in your hand, and his saying ‘choose for yourself’, is a metaphor for the husband that lacks intention or indication as in all other metaphors, so if it lacks intention or indication, then divorce does not take place because it is not an explicit statement of divorce.” [End of quote]

Allah knows best.

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