What do the scholars of the Dīn and muftīs of the Sacred Law state regarding the following issue: A person habitually talks in his sleep [i.e. a sleep-talker] and he gave his wife a divorce whilst sleeping, so has the divorce occurred?

Questioner: Brother from UK


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

The divorce of a person sleeping does not occur and there is a consensus amongst scholars upon this, and it has clearly been mentioned in Hadīths; just as it is narrated by Lady ‘Ā’ishah – may Allāh be content with her – that the Noble Messenger ﷺ has stated,

“رُفِعَ الْقَلَمُ عَنْ ثَلَاثَةٍ: عَنِ النَّائِمِ حَتَّى يَسْتَيْقِظَ، وَعَنِ الْغُلَامِ حَتَّى يَحْتَلِمَ، وَعَنِ الْمَجْنُونِ حَتَّى يُفِيقَ”

‘Rulings are not applied to three kinds of people: A sleeping person until he awakens, a child until he becomes mature [i.e. becomes pubescent – reaches the age of puberty], and a mentally ill person until he recovers.’

[al-Sahīh li Ibn Hibbān, vol. 1, p. 355, Hadīth no. 142]

[Sunan Abī Dāwūd, vol. 4, p. 141, Hadīth no. 4403]

And it is stated in Durr Mukhtār,

“(وَالنَّائِمُ) لِانْتِفَاءِ الْإِرَادَةِ”

‘The divorce of someone sleeping does not occur because he does not have intent or will.’

[al-Durr al-Mukhtār along with Radd al-Mukhtār, vol. 3, p. 243]

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 Haider Ali Madani

Read the original Urdu answer here: [Q-ID0834] Is Divorce valid if I said it whilst I was asleep?

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