Divorce in this country occurs in all cultures and religions and Islamic couples are not immune from divorce. A divorce in Florida reportedly raises unusual issues because of a traditional Islamic custom called a Sadaq. A Sadaq is a marriage contract in which it is traditional for the groom to promise a marriage gift to the bride.
In the divorce between Farah Shamsi and her husband Abdul, the gift was a $20,000.00
dowry which at the time of the divorce had not been paid. The wife
claimed that it had to be paid at the time of the divorce.
Massachusetts, a Sadaq will be treated the same as any other
pre-nuptial agreement. Massachusetts requires that pre-nuptial
agreements must be fair at the time of contract and fair at the time
of enforcement or they are invalid. The court will examine the
entire contract to determine validity. Clauses that prohibit divorce
will not be enforced and may render the entire contract invalid. The
court will look at the intentions of the parties when they signed the
contract. The court will examine the financial disclosures provided
at the at the time of the execution of the contract. The court will
also look at the total circumstances at the time of the divorce. The
enforcability of the Sadaq will be determined by Massachusetts law
and not by Islamic law as part of the divorce proceeding.
approach will be taken with other traditional marriage contracts such
as a Jewish Ketubah. They will all be enforced according to