Can a Husband and Wife Have Intercourse during the Month of Ramadan?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam


Can a husband and wife have Intercourse during the month of Ramadan?


Yes, it is perfectly okay and permitted for a husband and wife to have sexual intercourse during the blessed month of Ramadan after sunset (iftar) and before true dawn (al-Fajr al-Sadiq), meaning when they are not fasting.

Allah Most High says:

“Lawful for you, on the night of the fasts, is the approach (sexual intercourse) to your wives. They are your garments, and you are their garments. Allah knows what you used to do secretly among yourselves, but He turned to you and forgave you, so now cohabit with them (your wives) and seek what Allah has ordained for you, and eat and drink until the white thread of dawn appears to you distinct from its black thread. Then, complete your fast until the night appears, but do not cohabit with your wives while you retreat in the mosques. Those are Limits (set by) Allah. Approach not near to it. Thus does Allah make clear His Signs to men: that they may learn self-restraint.” (Surah al-Baqarah, V: 187)

In the above verse, Allah Most High mentions the permissibility of sexual intercourse with one’s spouse during the nights of Ramadan. In the beginning of Islam, the ruling was that if one went to sleep or offered his Isha prayer, one could not eat, drink, or have sex with one’s spouse until sunset the following day. This proved to be somewhat difficult for the Muslims; hence, after that, Allah, the Almighty, and Wise revealed the above-mentioned verse, in that it is permissible for one to eat, drink, or have sex at night until true dawn comes in, after which one’s fast commences. Some Companions abstained from sexual intercourse during the whole month of Ramadan; hence, the above-mentioned verse was revealed. (See: Tafsir Ibn Kathir, 1/298)

However, it should be noted that in the last part of the above verse, Allah Most High prohibits sexual intercourse while one is in I’tikaf. Hence, it is unlawful for one in the state of I’tikaf to cohabit with his spouse, whether in the Masjid or outside the Masjid.

As far as your second question is concerned, it is ideally permitted and lawful for a legally married couple to have sex on Eid day, as there is no fast on this day.

And Allah knows best.

[Shaykh] Muhammad ibn Adam

Darul Iftaa

Leicester, UK