How Can I Make a Legally Valid Marriage Contract That Would Be Valid in My Country?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Irshaad Sedick


I have a question regarding the validity of a Marriage contract. I am seeking a Marriage contract that includes conditions, confirmed mahr (dowry), and options for immediate or multiple installment payments. However, I have been unable to find such a contract.

Additionally, I would like to know if any legal measures, aside from Islamic laws, can ensure the validity of this contract in the country where I reside, such as the Netherlands.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.

May Allah alleviate our difficulties and guide us to what pleases Him. Amin.

In Islamic Law, a marriage contract is sufficient as a verbal agreement, though it is good to have a written contract.

To design a legally valid contract based on Islamic Law (according to the Shafi‘i School), the following integrals’ details must be included:

  • the spoken form;
  • the witnesses;
  • the bride’s guardian;
  • the groom;
  • and the bride.

Non-Essential, Important Details

Adding the details of the mahr (dower) payment is not required, but this would be good to add to the contract, and Allah knows best.

If the bride’s guardian or the groom appoints proxies, it would be wisest to include that and the proxies’ details in the contract.

Secular Legal Requirements

For your Islamic Marriage contract to be recognized according to the law of a particular country, we advise you to consult the Islamic Scholars in your country to ascertain the Islamic legal implications. Thereafter, lawyers may be able to assist, though Islamic scholars should be consulted throughout such undertakings, and Allah knows best.

I pray this is of benefit and that Allah guides us all.
[Shaykh] Irshaad Sedick
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Irshaad Sedick was raised in South Africa in a traditional Muslim family. He graduated from Dar al-Ulum al-Arabiyyah al-Islamiyyah in Strand, Western Cape, under the guidance of the late world-renowned scholar Shaykh Taha Karaan.

Shaykh Irshaad received Ijaza from many luminaries of the Islamic world, including Shaykh Taha Karaan, Mawlana Yusuf Karaan, and Mawlana Abdul Hafeez Makki, among others.

He is the author of the text “The Musnad of Ahmad ibn Hanbal: A Hujjah or not?” He has served as the Director of the Discover Islam Centre and Al Jeem Foundation. For the last five years till present, he has served as the Khatib of Masjid Ar-Rashideen, Mowbray, Cape Town.

Shaykh Irshaad has thirteen years of teaching experience at some of the leading Islamic institutes in Cape Town). He is currently building an Islamic online learning and media platform called ‘Isnad Academy’ and has completed his Master’s degree in the study of Islam at the University of Johannesburg. He has a keen interest in healthy living and fitness.