Currently, in many Muslim states,  if they are unhappy in their marriage (e.g., due to feelings of unattractiveness or dislike towards their husbands), then women are granted the option to seek divorce through the court, known as "Khul',".

However, this is not the original Sharia ruling.

According to the original Sharia ruling, women has no right to seek freedom through any court in the name of Khul'. Sharia mandated that a woman must remain with her husband, even in cases of abuse, physical violence (that doesn't result in broken bones), or if the husband was unattractive or undesirable.

In the original Islamic concept of Khul', a woman should offer "ransom money" to her husband. If he agrees to the offer, he can accept the money and divorce her, granting her freedom. However, if the husband declines the offer, no Islamic court has the authority to force him to divorce her, leaving the woman in a situation where she has to endure the hardships and abuse in the marriage.

Table of Contents:

Detailed Rule of Khul':

All four Sunni Imams of Fiqh concur on the following:

  • A woman does not possess the right to initiate a divorce from her husband through Khul'.
  • The decision to grant her freedom through divorce solely rests with the husband, and he can choose to accept or reject it.
  • No Islamic court holds the authority to compel the husband to divorce her against his will.

To seek approval from her husband:

  • The wife must offer "ransom money," enticing the husband with financial gain, and persuade him to grant her a divorce.
  • There is no fixed amount for this "ransom money"; it often involves returning the Haq-Mehr (bridal price) she received during marriage or even offering more.
  • The husband has the liberty to demand any sum he desires, potentially using this as an opportunity to extort money from her.

However, if the husband refuses to grant her freedom, even Islamic courts cannot force him to divorce her. In such a case, she is compelled to stay with her abusive husband.

Courts may intervene in exceptional cases, such as:

  1. The impotence of the husband.
  2. Failure of the husband to provide maintenance money.
  3. If the husband's whereabouts are unknown.
  4. If the husband is mentally ill.

Even if the husband behaves violently, beating the wife without reason and causing visible bruises, she cannot obtain Khul' or obtain freedom through Islamic courts. Only if the husband causes a physical injury that results in the breaking of a bone (or any other body part) can she seek a divorce through the court, but even then, she is required to pay the "ransom money" to her abusive husband.

Quranic Verse about the Khul’

Quran 2:229:

الطَّلاَقُ مَرَّتَانِ فَإِمْسَاكٌ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ تَسْرِيحٌ بِإِحْسَانٍ وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَكُمْ أَن تَأْخُذُواْ مِمَّا آتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ شَيْئًا إِلاَّ أَن يَخَافَا أَلاَّ يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَإِنْ خِفْتُمْ أَلاَّ يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا فِيمَا افْتَدَتْ بِهِ 

A divorce is only permissible twice: after that, the parties should either hold Together on equitable terms, or separate with kindness. It is not lawful for you, (Men), to take back any of your gifts (from your wives), except when both parties fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah. If ye (judges) do indeed fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah, there is no blame on either of them if she gives something for her freedom (Arabic word:افْتَدَتْ  which means Ransom money).

Muhammad said: "Women who seek their freedom through Khul’ are hypocrites"

If a woman does not simply like her husband and seeks to get her freedom by using the greed of money of her husband, then Muhammad declared such women to be hypocrites. 

Sunnan Tirmidhi, Kitab-ul-Talaq:

عَنْ ثَوْبَانَ، عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏"‏ الْمُخْتَلِعَاتُ هُنَّ الْمُنَافِقَاتُ ‏"‏

The Prophet said: "The women who seek a Khul are hypocrites."
This tradition is “Sahih” (i.e. Authentic)

Sunnan Tirmidhi, Kitab-ul-Talaq:

عَنْ ثَوْبَانَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ "‏ أَيُّمَا امْرَأَةٍ سَأَلَتْ زَوْجَهَا طَلاَقًا مِنْ غَيْرِ بَأْسٍ فَحَرَامٌ عَلَيْهَا رَائِحَةُ الْجَنَّةِ 

The Messenger of Allah said: "Whichever woman seeks a Khul from her husband without harm (cause), then the scent of Paradise will be unlawful for her."
This tradition is also “Sahih”.

Even if the husband beats and breaks the bones of the wife, still she could not get the divorce automatically without paying him ransom money (and forget about any fine for damaged body part)

Sunan Abu Dawud, Book of Divorce:

Narrated Aisha, Ummul Mu'minin:
Habibah daughter of Sahl was the wife of Thabit ibn Qays Shimmas. He beat her and broke some of her part. So she came to the Prophet after morning, and complained to him against her husband. The Prophet called on Thabit ibn Qays and said (to him): Take a part of her property and separate yourself from her. He asked: Is that right, Messenger of Allah? He said: Yes. He said: I have given her two gardens of mine as a dower, and they are already in her possession. The Prophet said: Take them and separate yourself from her.

Sheikh Albani declared this Hadith to be “Sahih” (authentic)

This injustice against women can be summarized as follows:

  1. Even in the face of severe physical abuse resulting in broken bones, a woman cannot obtain a divorce automatically.
  2. Despite suffering physical harm, she still has to pay the ransom money for her freedom.
  3. There is no provision for any penalty or fine to be paid to the woman for the injuries she endured.

In contrast, in the secular Western world today, where laws are based on human rationality and ethics, women in such situations would not only be granted their freedom without any financial burden but also be entitled to receive compensation for the harm inflicted upon them.

If any part of a woman is NOT broken (but she got only bruises), then she has no right to seek her freedom

Sahih Bukhari, Book of Dress:

Rifa`a divorced his wife whereupon `AbdurRahman married her. `Aisha said that the lady (came), wearing a green veil, and complained to her (Aisha) of her husband and showed her a green spot on her skin caused by beating. It was the habit of ladies to support each other, so when Allah's Messenger came, `Aisha said, "I have not seen any woman suffering as much as the believing women. Look! Her skin is greener than her clothes!"
When `AbdurRahman heard that his wife had gone to the Prophet, he came with his two sons from another wife.
She said, "By Allah! I have done no wrong to him but he is impotent and is as useless to me as this," holding and showing the fringe of her garment,
`Abdur-Rahman said, "By Allah, O Allah's Messenger! She has told a lie! I am very strong and can satisfy her but she is disobedient and wants to go back to (her first husband) Rifa`a (by doing Halala with me).
" Allah's Messenger said, to her, "If that is your intention (i.e. to do Halala), then know that it is unlawful for you to remarry Rifa`a unless `Abdur-Rahman has had sexual intercourse with you."
Then the Prophet saw two boys with `Abdur- Rahman and asked (him), "Are these your sons?" On that `AbdurRahman said, "Yes." The Prophet said, "You claim what you claim (i.e. that he is impotent)? But by Allah, these boys resemble him as a crow resembles a crow,"

Although the woman wanted to be rid of her husband, Khul' was not her right in Islam; instead, it depended on the husband's will. Hence, despite her strong desire for freedom, she was unable to separate from him. Her second husband resorted to brutal beatings, causing bruises all over her body. However, he still refused to grant her a divorce or freedom through Khul'.

Notably, Muhammad did not prohibit the cruel man from beating her so brutally but remained silent about it (known as Hadith-e-Taqriri). Furthermore, Muhammad did not grant her the right to seek freedom through Khul' even after enduring such severe beatings.

Even if the husband is infertile, a woman is not permitted to seek her freedom through Khul'

All four Sunni Fiqh Imams unanimously agree that a wife cannot initiate a divorce based on the husband's infertility.

The largest Islamic Fatwa website Islam Q&A writes (link):

With regard to the man’s sterility, i.e., his inability to father children, this is not counted as a fault that would necessitate annulment of the marriage, according to the majority of scholars, apart from the view of al-Hasan al-Basri, and Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah.

In previous centuries, it was practically impossible to determine a man's infertility, making it an unattributable condition. This was also the case with Muhammad himself.

Islamic apologists claim that women are "emotional," justifying the husband's role in deciding whether divorce is in her favor or not

This view is flawed as it unfairly blames women for being emotional while disregarding the fact that men can also be emotional and make false decisions in anger.

In stark contrast, Islam has made it incredibly easy for men to divorce their wives by merely uttering "Talaq" (divorce) three times, even in a state of extreme and uncontrolled anger.

Islam Apologists: But the Sunnah way of giving Talaq is 3 menstrual periods

Sunnah or not, Islamic Sharia indeed does allow men to divorce their wives in anger by saying 3 times Talaq. 

Secondly, if the divorce process is 3 menstrual periods long, then not only the husbands come out of their anger, but women will also come out of their anger or emotions. Thus, then Islam should also give this right to women to give a divorce after 3 months, while they are no more in a state of emotions/anger. 

Thirdly, if Islam does not give this right to women to decide for themselves even after 3 months (by blaming them for being emotional), then still Islam had to give this right to the father or brother or son of the woman to decide on her behalf.

But when Islam says that if a woman wishes her freedom, then it is ONLY the Husband who should decide for the wife if divorce is in her favour or not, then this is not Wisdom, but rather completely irrational. 

Muslim women should reflect on these questions:

If you are a Muslim woman, take a moment to consider:

  • If you were in the position of Allah and responsible for making laws, would you have created a law like Khul' for women?
  • Can you believe that such an "Unjust" law like Khul' could be formulated by a divine being of infinite wisdom?
  • Do you accept the notion that women are solely emotional and unable to decide for themselves in matters concerning their lives?
  • Is it fair that, even in cases of differences and disputes, and despite your strong desire to separate, your husband gets to decide whether divorce is in your best interest or not?
  • Do you not realize that the concept of "Allah" does not grant you the right to seek freedom while believing that women possess a "lower Intelligence Level" compared to men?
  • Don't you feel that these unjust laws, such as Khul', are not divinely ordained but rather a result of man-made beliefs, considering women as inferior and always subservient to men?

Your innate human rationale and sense of humanity are sufficient to guide you and discern right from wrong.

Distinguishing between "Islamic Laws" and the "Laws of Muslim Countries":

It is essential to carefully differentiate between these two aspects, as some individuals may attempt to deceive others by conflating them.

The true Islamic rulings have been previously outlined (e.g., Khul' not being an inherent right of women but dependent on the husband's decision to grant freedom).

Throughout the past 14 centuries of Islamic history, this ruling remained unchanged.

However, in the current century, owing to the influence of the Western Feminist Movement, even women in Islamic countries are becoming aware of their fundamental rights as human beings.

As a result, these feminist movements within Muslim countries have actively challenged and contested the traditional Divorce/Khul' ruling of Islam. To their astonishment, they have achieved success in "ALTERING" this original Islamic ruling in numerous Muslim countries.

Nowadays, women in many Muslim countries can approach the court and request Khul' without having to pay a ransom.

Initially, Islamic scholars attempted to resist these changes, but due to the inherent conflict with principles of humanity, their efforts did not succeed.

Similar to how Muslim men once did not require permission from their first wife to marry another, the feminist movement's strong opposition has led to changes in some Muslim countries. Now, Muslim men are required to seek written permission from their first wife before marrying another woman.

For example, refer to the following two studies that illustrate how courts were granted the authority to grant freedom in Khul' without the need for ransom money, despite opposition from Islamic scholars who believed it to be the husband's right according to Sharia law.

Study 1

Study 2

Pakistan is an Islamic country. The laws made by the Parliament and Judiciary are administered according to the injunction of Islam. There are many laws made for the protections of women. Among these rights granted, right of women to khul " is also awarded by Islamic Law. Khul " is the proposal given to the husband by the wife for divorce. Judicial Khul " is exercised in Pakistani courts, according to Article 2(ix) of dissolution of Muslims Marriages Act 1939. A large number of Ulama (Islamic Jurists) even today, refuse to recognize khul " granted by courts without the consent of the husband as a valid divorce. Confusion is caused by two parallel and conflicting interpretations of the Islamic Law. On one hand, there is the statutory law and interpretation by the Superior Courts of Pakistan and on the other hand, is the interpretation of Jurists of Islamic Law with strong arguments from Qur " an and Sunnah.

In simple terms, it was not an external plot or a Western conspiracy against Islam, but rather an internal struggle within the Muslim community that led to the defeat of the Sharia ruling on Khul'. Muslims themselves played a significant role in this change as they rebelled against the ruling and eventually removed it from the laws of their countries.

Actually, this changed Ruling in state laws is a "Bid'ah" (Innovation) in Sharia. But today Muslims are simply helpless, and they have to introduce this Bid'ah in the original Sharia Ruling. 


Please don't forget the Bigger Picture: 

How a woman get her freedom from an Abusive unwanted Husband
The Western World Islam

Western women have to suffer ZERO unjust Hardships. 

Muslim women have to suffer from the following 11 (Eleven) unjust HARDSHIPS. Muhammad copied these Sharia Rulings from the pre-Islamic ignorant Arab culture.

  1. Liaan اللعان
  2. ‘Iddah
  3. Khul’ خلع
  4. Faskh فسخ
  5. Halala (Tahleel Marriage نكاح التحليل) 
  6. Ila (الإيلاء)
  7. Zihar
  8. The process of 3 Talaqs in Islam is again UNJUST towards the women
  9. Wife BEATING (i.e. even if the husband beats her brutally with bruises, still she doesn't have the right to get separation)
  10. If a husband does not do intercourse with his wife for several years (in order to tease her), even then she cannot get her freedom through divorce
  11. Sharia Ruling: If a divorced woman remarries, then she will lose the custody of her children


  • Contrary to women, Muslim men don't have to face a SINGLE of such one-sided & unjust HARDSHIP. 
  • In fact, it is much easier for a Muslim man to get rid of his wife as compared to a Western man. He does not even have to go to court, but only to say 3 times Talaq, and that is all.