What do the scholars of the Dīn and muftīs of the Sacred Law state regarding the following issue: If I adopted a four or five year old child will it be necessary for my wife to veil from him when he becomes bāligh and can he use my name as his surname and will the rulings concerning him become the same as those concerning my own son?

Questioner: Brother from UK


بسم اللہ الرحمن الرحیم
الجواب بعون الملک الوھاب اللھم ھدایۃ الحق والصواب

Yes when this child becomes bāligh it will be necessary for your wife to observe sharī’ah veiling from him because he will be a non-mahram in relation to your wife.  To place your name as this child’s surname is not correct either because in our customary practise the name of the father is placed as the surname of the child and you are not his father.  For you to place your name as his surname in place of his real father’s name and to call him by attributing him towards yourself is against the teachings of the Qur’ān because Allāh (Most Transcendent) commands us to attribute children to their real fathers as is mentioned in the Qur’ān:

“Call them with their father’s names – this is more suitable in the court of Allāh.”

[Sūrah al-Ahzāb Verse 5]

For you to write your own name in place of his real father’s name and make him apparent as your own son is to attribute him to other than his real father which is impermissible and this results in the curse of Allāh (Mighty and Glorious is He), His Angels and all mankind as is mentioned in the hadīth:

“Whoever attributed himself to other than his real father then upon him is the curse of Allāh, the Angels and all mankind.  Allāh will not accept from him obligatory or voluntary deeds.”

[Kanz al-‘Ummāl Hadīth 15309]

In a second hadīth the Prophet ﷺ said:

“Whoever attributed himself to other than his real father whereas he is knowing then Jannāh is forbidden for him.”

[Sahīh al-Bukhārī, Sahīh Muslim, Sunan Abī Dāwūd, Sunan ibn Mājah]

It is mentioned in Fatāwā Fayd al-Rasūl that when there is this warning for the one who attributes himself to other than his own father then the one who attributes someone else to other than that person’s own father is even more deserving of this warning.

For this reason you can adopt someone else’s child but his original father’s name should be written on certification and other documentation and the child should be attributed towards his own father and the rulings concerning him cannot be the same as the rulings concerning your own son.

واللہ تعالی اعلم ورسولہ اعلم صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم
کتبہ ابو الحسن محمد قاسم ضیاء قادری

Answered by Mufti Qasim Zia al-Qadri
Translated by Ustadh Ibrar Shafi

Read the original Urdu answer here: [Q-ID0823] Can I use my name as a surname for my adopted son?

Also see:

[Q-ID0091] Is it okay for me to change my surname to my husbands after marriage?

[Q-ID0302] I’ve been divorced and I’m now married to someone else, can I change my child’s surname?

[Q-ID0303] I will pass my newborn baby to my sister to adopt and take care of, is this okay?

[Q-ID0455] Is it necessary to have our Father’s name as our surname?

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