Praise be to Allaah.
We congratulate you on your becoming Muslim, and we ask
Allaah to increase you in faith, knowledge and piety.
It is obligatory for a woman to cover her face before
non-mahram men, according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions.
We have explained the evidence for that in the answer to question no.
It is not permissible for a father to prevent his daughter
from wearing niqaab.
If the father is negligent with regard to prayer and drinks
alcohol sometimes, then he is a faasiq (evildoer), and whether he may act as
a guardian with regard to marriage is a matter concerning which the fuqaha’
differed. The view of the Shaafa’is and Hanbalis is that it is not valid.
The Hanafi fuqaha’ are of the view that the guardianship of a faasiq is
valid, and this is the well known view among the Maalikis, but they regard
the guardianship of a faasiq as makrooh (disliked). See: Nihaayat
al-Muhtaaj (6/738), al-Insaaf (8/73), Haashiyat Ibn ‘Aabideen
(3/55), Haashiyat al-Dasooqi (2/230) and Manh al-Jaleel
Based on the view that his guardianship is not valid, then
guardianship passes to the next closest male relative on the father’s side.
The most qualified people to arrange a woman’s marriage after her father
are: her grandfather, then her son, then her full brother, then a brother
through the father, then his sons, then paternal uncles, then their sons,
then the father’s paternal uncles, then the ruler (or qaadi – judge).
See: al-Mughni (7/346).
If a guardian refuses to marry a woman to one who is
compatible with her and whose religious commitment and character are good,
then he is preventing her marriage, and guardianship passes from him to
whoever is closest.
Ibn Qudaamah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: What is
meant by preventing marriage is not allowing a woman to marry one who is
compatible with her, if she agrees to that and if each one wants to marry
the other. Al-Ma’qil ibn Yasaar said: A sister of mine married a man, then
he divorced her. When her ‘iddah was over he came and proposed marriage to
her (again), and I said to him: “She married you, was intimate with you and
honoured you, then you divorced her, and now you come to propose marriage
again! No, by Allaah, she will never go back to you.” He was a man with whom
there was nothing wrong, and she wanted to go back to him. Then Allaah
revealed these words (interpretation of the meaning):
“do not prevent them from marrying”
I said: Now I will do it, O Messenger of Allaah. He said: So
he married her to him. Narrated by al-Bukhaari.
So if she wants to marry a specific person who is compatible,
and he wants to marry her to someone else who is also compatible, and
refuses to marry her to the one she wants, then he is preventing her
But if she asks to marry someone who is not compatible, then
he has the right to prevent her from doing that, and he is not (willfully)
preventing her in that case.
End quote from al-Mughni (9/373)
Shaykh Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem (may Allaah have mercy on him)
said: When a woman reaches the age of puberty and if a man proposes marriage
whose religious commitment, attitude and compatibility she approves of, and
her guardian cannot find any fault in him that make him incompatible with
her or prove this fault, then the woman’s guardian must accept his request
to marry her, and if he refuses to do that, then he should be reminded of
the obligation of taking care of the woman under his care. If he insists on
refusing after that, then his guardianship is waived and it passes to the
next closest male relative on the father’s side.
End quote from Fataawa al-Shaykh Muhamamd ibn Ibraaheem
(may Allaah have mercy on him), (10/97).
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: If
the guardian refuses to arrange the marriage of a woman to a suitor who is
compatible in terms of his religious commitment and good character, then
guardianship passes to the next closest male relative on the father’s side,
then the next closest. If they refuse to arrange her marriage, as usually
happens, then guardianship passes to the shar’i judge, and the shar’i judge
should arrange the woman’s marriage. If such a case comes to him and he
knows that the woman’s guardians refused to arrange her marriage, then he is
obliged to arrange her marriage, because he has general guardianship so long
as family guardianship was not achieved.
The fuqaha’ (may Allaah have mercy on them) mentioned that if
the guardian repeatedly refuses compatible suitors, then he becomes a faasiq
(evildoer) as a result; he is no longer regarded as being of good character
and his guardianship is waived. According to the well known view of Imam
Ahmad, he is no longer qualified to lead prayers, and it is not valid for
him to lead a group of Muslims in prayer. This is a serious matter.
As we have referred to above, some people reject the suitors
who come to propose marriage to the women over whom Allaah has given them
guardianship, even though they are compatible, but the girl may be too shy
to go to the qaadi (judge) to ask him to arrange her marriage. This is
something that really happens. But the woman should weigh up the pros and
cons, and see which is worse: staying without a husband and letting this
guardian who fools about and is careless control her life, then when she
grows old and has no desire for marriage, he marries her off, or approaching
the qaadi with a request to arrange her marriage, which is her shar’i
Undoubtedly the second alternative is preferable, which is
going to the qaadi and asking him to arrange her marriage, because she is
entitled to that, and because going to the qaadi and having the qaadi
arrange her marriage is in the interests of other women as well, because
other women will come as she has come, and because her coming to the qaadi
is a rebuke to those wrongdoers who do wrong to the women whom Allaah has
placed under their guardianship by refusing to marry them to compatible
suitors. So this serves three interests:
The woman’s own interests, so
that she will not be left without a husband
The interests of others, as it
will open the door for other women who are waiting for someone to set a
precedent for them to follow
Preventing these unjust
guardians who are controlling the lives of their daughters and other women
whom Allaah has placed under their guardianship, on the basis of their whims
It also serves the purpose of establishing the command of the
Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) who said: “If
there comes to you one with whose religious commitment and character you are
pleased, then marry (your female relative under your care) to him, for if
you do not do that there will be tribulation in the land and a great deal of
And it also serves a specific interest, which is making it
easy for those men who propose marriage to women, whose are compatible in
terms of religious commitment and character.
End quote from Fataawa Islamiyyah (3/148).
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen also said: Would that we could reach a
level where a woman whose father refuses to marry her to one who is
compatible in terms of character and religious commitment would dare to go
to the qaadi so that he might say to her father: Arrange her marriage or I
will arrange it myself, or a guardian other than you will arrange it,
because this (complaining to the qaadi) is the girl’s right if her father
prevents her from marrying and this is a shar’i right. Would that we could
reach this level, but most girls are prevented by shyness from doing that.
End quote from al-Liqa’ al-Shahri. See also the answer to question
If you father refuses to arrange your marriage to one whom
you like, then he is preventing your marriage, and guardianship passes to
the next closest male relative on the father’s side, in the order that we
have mentioned above. If they refuse to arrange your marriage, or if there
are no relatives, then guardianship passes to the Islamic qaadi (judge), and
his place is taken by the Islamic Centre in countries where there are no
It is not permissible under any circumstances for you to get
married without a guardian, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) said: “There is no marriage except with a guardian.”
Narrated by Abu Dawood (2085), al-Tirmidhi (1011) and Ibn Maajah (1881),
from the hadeeth of al-Ash’ari; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh
And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) said: “Any woman who gets married without the permission of her
guardian, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is
invalid.” Narrated by Ahmad (24417), Abu Dawood (2083) and al-Tirmidhi
(1102); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’ (2709).
We ask Allaah to make you steadfast and to guide and forgive
And Allaah knows best.