Mahr-Defined and elaborated

‘Mahr’ is an important aspect of a legal marriage contract in Islamic perspective. The word Mahr is also use as Sadaqah and Ajr in the Quran. As far as the meaning of Mahr is concerned it means a reward or gift for a wife by her husband at the time of marriage or at any time after such a marriage, which is agreed upon by the parties.

In holy Quran Allah has commanded that Mahr should be given by a husband to his wife according to the amount fixed through an agreement. Following verse is quoted as a reference.

“Give Women their Faridah as a free gift.”

Mahr can be handed over to a wife in shape of lump sum money, ownership of a property or by giving a valuable thing to her. The ownership of such an amount of Mahr is transferred to the wife at the time of nikah or at any specified time after the marriage. A husband cannot utilize the amount of Mahr or take the advantage of any such thing awarded as a Mahr. Moreover, Mahr is a kind of consideration that is offered to a woman if she enters into a valid marriage contract.

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How Mahr is paid

Mahr can be paid in two different ways, as per contract of marriage terms that are agreed upon by both husband and wife.

  • Mahr Muajjal
  • Mahr Muwajjal

Mahar Muajjal is a paying mode in which the amount is paid at the earliest possible time after marriage is sermonized. Whether it is money or property, it is required to be handed over to the bride before consummation of marriage. The word Muajjal is derived from Ajilah that means ‘without any delay’ or ‘prompt’.

Mahr Muawjjal is a kind of Mahr, which can be paid at any time after the consummation of a marriage. It is however necessary to keep in mind that the time fixed for payment should be a definite one otherwise it would not be accepted. Mahr Muwajjal is usually paid by the husband if he pronounces divorce to his wife. Moreover, if a husband dies prior to the payment of Mahr, the widow is entitled to receive the amount of Mahr without any further delay.

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Right to waive

A woman can waive her right to receive Mahr according to her free will. If the consent is obtained under a threat or undue influence then she can exercise her right to annul her marriage.

Women is the sole owner of Mahr

If a woman enters into a valid contract of marriage, she would be entitled to receive the amount of Mahr as per terms and conditions of such a contract of marriage. She is the only owner of the amount or property given to her as a Mahr and her husband cannot utilize it for his own use.

What should be the amount of Mahr

Amount of Mahr, is not specified by the Islamic law. However, it should be fixed according to the social status and financial circumstances of the bridegroom. The bride can also ask for a specific thing or sum of money to be given to her as Mahr.

 

 

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