Is it necessary for the Imam to intend to lead women in prayer?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
Your wife does not need to repeat her prayer due to the following rulings:
It is not a condition for the validity of the women’s prayer that the Imam intends to lead them – as long as the woman does not stand next to the Imam or any other male follower.
If she does stand next to the Imam or any male follower, she is no longer considered a follower of the Imam’s prayer, nor is her prayer valid. [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar citing the Halba]
Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York, where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and several texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.