Are children supposed to be looked after by their father or by their mother after their parents have divorced? If mother is supposed to look after them, does father have to pay compensation money for children until they reach puberty?
Submitted by on Sat, 05/06/2010 - 12:17
Dear Brother / Sister,
Answer: General principle in case of divorce is as follows:
Children should be looked after by their mother, however, their maintenance is the responsibility of their father.
Actually, mothers have got affection and adeptness which are necessary for looking after children and fathers are capable of providing necessary conditions and meeting their needs. For this reason, father has to pay child maintenance for his children who are living with their mother. However, mother does not have to look after children. If she refuses to look after them, father’s mother or other close relatives have to look after them.
• A mother looks after and takes care of daughters until the age of nine and sons until the age of seven. Then, it is father’s right to protect them. Father is regarded to be more appropriate for protecting them.
• Even though mother can be non-muslim, children should still be given to her. However, if it is understood as the children grow older that they are receiving an education and discipline which are inappropriate for Islam, they should be given to a relative that will not give them such education. In this case, mother loses her right to look after children.
• Mother, in order to keep her right to look after children, must not marry a stranger and must be capable of looking after them and protecting them. A mother who has got married or who is not very careful about her morals or has got mental problems loses her right to look after children. Children are taken away from her and given to father.
• A mother who is continuing to look after children has got three rights of expenditure.
- Remuneration for nursing, if child(ren) is(are) sucking from mother
- Remuneration for looking after and taking care of them
- Child maintenance
Father pays mother for these three expenditures according to the amount determined by scholars who are knowledgeable in this topic. He can visit his children in mother’s house. Mother is not obliged to take children to him to see.
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