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Who is the guardian of an illegitimate daughter when it comes to her getting married?

Question: 151932

A muslim man and woman had an affair and had an illegitamate child from that affair. The married woman took the child into her house and remained married to her husband. It was decided that the biological father would provide for his daughter and that she would live in the house of her mother and her mothers husband. The biological father became a very religious man and it is almost 20 years after this incident. She now lives in a house with her mother, her mother’s husband and her older half-brother and half-sister.

Who is the wali of this girl? The biological father who provided for her for 20 years, the step-father, or her older half-brother who also lives with them?.

Praise be to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon the Messenger of Allah and his family.


The scholars (may Allah have mercy on them) differed
concerning the illegitimate child. Is he to be attributed to his zaani
father or not? There are two opinions, which have been discussed in the
answers to questions no. 33591 and 85043. The more correct view is that he
should be attributed only to his mother and that he should not be attributed
to the zaani. 

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said in
Fataawa Islamiyyah (3/370):  “With regard to the child who is born as
a result of zina, he is the child of his mother, not of his father, because
of the general meaning of the hadeeth in which the Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘The child is to be attributed to the
husband and the adulterer deserves nothing’ – i.e., this is not his child.
This is what the hadeeth means. If the man marries her after repenting, then
the child has been conceived before marriage and repentance and is not his
child; he cannot inherit from the man who committed zina even if he claims
him as his child, because he is not his legitimate child.” End quote. 


Once it is established that the illegitimate child is not to
be attributed to the zaani, then he has no ‘asbah [male relatives on the
father’s side]. 

It says in Asna’l-Mataalib (13/288): The illegitimate
child has no ‘asbah because he is not attributed to the father. End quote
from Tarqeem al-Shaamilah. 

Some of the scholars are of the view that his ‘asbah with
regard to inheritance is his mother, or his mother’s ‘asbah [male relatives
on her father’s side]. With regard to guardianship for marriage and other
matters, he has no ‘asbah. 

It says in al-Iqnaa‘ (4/505): The ‘asbah of the
illegitimate child is the ‘asbah of his mother with regard to inheritance
only. … But they have no guardianship authority with regard to marriage or
other matters. End quote. 

Based on that, this girl does not have any guardian on the
basis of blood ties, so her guardian is the Muslim ruler, because the
Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The ruler is the
guardian of the one who has no guardian.” Narrated by Abu Dawood (2083) and
al-Tirmidhi (1102); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood. 

If you are in a country where there is no Muslim ruler, then
her guardian is the director of the Islamic Centre in her country; if there
is no such person then it is the imam of the mosque. 

For more information please see the answer to question no.

And Allah knows best.


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