Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Islam: Guardian Approval For Marriage May Be Abused

From The National:

Automatic legal services are allowing hundreds of women in Saudi Arabia to file, argue and win court proceedings that grant them a judge's approval to bypass their guardian's consent for marriage.

Saudi lawyer Hazim Al Madani says that while guardianship approval is a prerequisite for women's marriage in Islam, some guardians abuse the powers granted to them by the law. Many Saudi women's families would not consent to the marriage solely based on men's nationalities, "religiosity and morals." 

In 2018, Saudi Arabia granted women the ability to work without getting permission from a legal guardian. This has given them the freedom to keep personal issues protected from scrutiny and abuse. Under previous guardianship restrictions, a woman could find herself redundant because her guardian no longer approved of her employment. Mr. Al Madani said the select number of court proceedings published by the ministry on its website encourages women in similar situations to tackle their own issues through the legal system.

Read more here.

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