Being married a woman and her stepmother at the same time
Praise be to Allah, and may peace and blessings be upon our final Prophet. The Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta' has read (Part No. 18; Page No. 357) what was submitted to the Grand Mufty (Islamic scholar qualified to issue legal opinions) by His Eminence the Head of the Courts of
that carries the number (1471/1), dated 1/6/1420 A.H. His Eminence asked to investigate what was submitted to him by His Eminence the Judge of the Islamic Shari`ah Court in
Shaykh Tamim ibn Muhammad Al-`Unayzan concerning the request of (KNA) to marry (SAA), so that he combines her and her stepmother in marriage.His Eminence's letter goes as follows:To His Eminence, Head of the Courts of
may Allah protect him. May Allah's Peace, Mercy, and Blessings be upon you.Please find attached the papers sent to us that carry the number 580, dated 27/5/1420 A.H., concerning the request submitted by (KNA) to marry the Egyptian woman (SAA), that was agreed to by the Interior Ministry in the letter number 17/1787, dated 26/7/1419 A.H., and your request to investigate this matter. Please be advised that after having a discussion with the husband, we came to know that he is married to (ASB)'s daughter, where the mentioned (S) is this man's wife, not the first wife's mother, and he had died. Now, (K) wants to marry his wife's stepmother. This issue is controversial among the scholars (may Allah be merciful with them), as mentioned by the author of "Al-Mughni" and others. There is also a jurisprudential rule stating that it is Haram (prohibited) (Part No. 18; Page No. 358) to marry two women at the same time such that if one of them had been a man, it would have been impermissible for him to marry the other woman. I would like to plead this case to His Eminence, the Grand Mufty of
the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,
the Head of the Council of Senior Scholars and the Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta' so that they can advise concerning this, to clear my conscience and make sure that no similar Fatwa was previously issued. May Allah guide us all. Peace be upon you.
Having investigated the issue, the Committee wrote
a man may marry a woman and her stepmother at the same time, provided that they have not shared suckling from the same woman, as there is no impediment to this. As for what the Fuqaha' (Muslim jurists) mentioned, that it is Haram for a man to marry two women at the same time, such that if one of them had been a man, it would have been impermissible for him to marry the other woman, this is restricted to blood relations, so that the ties of kinship are not severed. Wives of the same man tend to be jealous of each other. However, this is not found in the case of a woman and her stepmother, as they are not blood relatives. This is only restricted to blood relations, although scholars have disagreed about it. (Part No. 18; Page No. 359) May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.