When Wife Accepts Islam and Husband Does Not

By Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Posted: 2 Rajab 1424, 30 August 2003

Q.) I am a teacher of religion and I'm currently trying to learn more about Islam.

I would like to know what happens to a marriage if the woman converts and the husband does not. Is the marriage still valid or does it become invalid? I have heard that it can be valid, if they have been married for 4 years.

A.) In principle, if a woman reverts to Islam and her husband does not do so, her marriage will be invalidated immediately. She cannot live with her husband. There is no basis of the four years exclusion.

It is also important to state that the above ruling should not be an obstacle for a woman to accept Islam. It is better to be a Muslim in any way than being a non-Muslim. It is possible she may use her influence in converting her husband to Islam.

And Allah Ta'ala Knows Best