Judge rules couple’s Islamic marriage falls under English law

A High Court judge has decided that an estranged couple’s Islamic faith marriage falls within the scope of English matrimonial law.

Solicitor Nasreen Akhter and businessman Mohammed Shabaz Khan, took part in an Islamic wedding ceremony in a London restaurant in 1998.

Mrs Akhter says the nikah ceremony was conducted by an imam before about 150 guests.

She says Mr Khan became her “husband” and he had considered her his “wife”.

Mrs Akhter said the Islamic faith marriage constituted a valid marriage under English law.

Mr Khan, who wants to stop Ms Akhter staging a fight over money in a London court, disagreed.

Mr Justice Williams has ruled that the marriage falls within the scope of the 1973 Matrimonial Causes Act.

However, he has decided that the marriage was “entered into in disregard of certain requirements as to the formation of marriage.”

He says the marriage is therefore “void” and says Mrs Akhter is entitled to a decree of nullity.

The judge had analysed the dispute at a recent trial in the Family Division of the High Court in London and has announced his decision in a written ruling.



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