Raya Al Ameri Advocates & Legal Consultants


Women’s Rights in Marriage and Divorce under Sharia Law in UAE and the UAE Personal Status Law

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a country that follows Sharia law, which has a significant impact on various aspects of personal and family matters. When it comes to women’s rights in marriage and divorce, the UAE has enacted the UAE Personal Status Law (Federal Law No. 28 of 2005) to regulate these matters and ensure the protection and well-being of women. This article will focus on women’s rights in marriage, specifically exploring the rights granted to women in the marriage contract according to the Personal Status and  Sharia Law in UAE.

The Importance of the Marriage Contract

In Islam, the marriage contract holds immense importance as it establishes the rights and obligations of both parties involved. It serves as a legal agreement that safeguards the interests and rights of women within the marriage. The UAE Personal Status Law recognizes the significance of the marriage contract and provides a framework to ensure fairness and equality.

Consent and Free Will

One of the fundamental principles of Islamic marriage is the requirement of free will and consent from both the bride and groom. Without the genuine consent of both parties, a marriage contract cannot be considered valid under Sharia Law in UAE. This ensures that women have the right to choose their partners willingly, eliminating any coercion or forced marriages. 

Mahr (Dowry)

The concept of mahr, or dowry, is an integral part of Islamic marriages. It is a gift or financial consideration given by the groom to the bride as a symbol of his commitment and financial support. The mahr is agreed upon and specified in the marriage contract. It is the exclusive property of the wife, and she has full control over its usage. This provides financial security and independence to women within the marriage.

Rights to Maintenance and Financial Support

Under Personal Status and Sharia Law in UAE, the husband has the obligation to provide maintenance and financial support to his wife. This includes providing for her basic needs, such as housing, food, clothing, and medical expenses. The wife has the right to expect a reasonable standard of living based on the husband’s financial capacity. If the husband fails to fulfill his financial responsibilities, the wife can seek legal recourse to enforce her rights.

Rights to Education and Pursuit of Personal Development

Islam emphasizes the importance of education and personal development for both men and women. The UAE Personal Status Law ensures that women have the right to pursue education and acquire knowledge. The husband is prohibited from obstructing his wife’s educational pursuits and must support her in achieving her educational goals. This provision enables women to enhance their skills, pursue careers, and contribute to society while being respected and supported within their marital relationships.

Right to Retain Personal Property

One of the rights granted to women in marriage is the right to retain ownership and control over their personal property. This includes any assets, income, or investments acquired before or during the marriage. The husband has no claim or control over the wife’s personal property, and she has the freedom to manage and dispose of her assets as she sees fit.

Right to Privacy and Dignity

Women have the right to privacy and dignity within the marital relationship. The UAE Personal Status Law prohibits any form of physical or emotional abuse towards women. Husbands are obligated to treat their wives with respect and refrain from inflicting harm, whether physical or emotional. This provision safeguards the well-being and dignity of women, emphasizing the importance of mutual respect and kindness within the marriage.

The Personal Status Law, based on Sharia Law in UAE, recognizes the importance of women’s rights in marriage. The marriage contract serves as a safeguard for these rights, ensuring fairness, consent, and protection for women. This article has highlighted some of the key rights granted to women in the marriage contract, including consent and free will, the concept of mahr (dowry), rights to maintenance and financial support, rights to education and personal development, the right to retain personal property, and the right to privacy and dignity. These provisions aim to empower women within the institution of marriage and ensure their well-being.Join our website to stay informed about the latest updates on family law. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter for weekly posts. For legal consultations regarding any family matters, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at +971 4 578 6050.

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Raya Al Ameri law firm team consists of highly qualified and experienced lawyers boasting the largest and broadest full-service Litigation Practice in UAE. We handle cases from local litigation to complex disputes. We have the technical expertise and capability to advise clients and conduct all types of litigation in the UAE including but not limited Commercial, Employment, Banking, Civil, Insurance, Construction, Real Estate, IP, and Criminal Cases.

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