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Posted on in Estate Planning

Islamic divorce attorney, Illinois estate planning attorney, Islamic family law attorney,When someone passes away, the next step for most families is to divide the assets according to the wishes of the deceased. However, for observant Muslim faithful, dividing the assets is supposed to be a much easier procedure than for non-Muslims. There are specific tenets in shari’ah law governing the disposition of one’s assets. However, these requirements do not always mesh harmoniously with secular intestacy laws. Therefore, it is considered mustahabb, or recommended, that Muslims always leave wills, or wasiyyat, which provide explicitly for their wishes. Wasiyya, in Arabic, can be translated as “instruction.”

Asset Disposition and Wills in Shari’ah Law

Wills and other testamentary interests are extremely important in Islam. Several hadith make clear that if a man is just in his last will and testament after a lifetime of wickedness, “the goodness of his deed will be sealed upon him, and he will enter the Garden.” Leaving one’s affairs unsettled can be extremely harmful to one’s family - for example, accounts or property may have clouded title, or the position of one’s children (that is, who will be their guardian) may be undecided. A will is the observant Muslim’s last chance to set things right.

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spousal support changes, Islamic divorce lawyer ChicagoStarting January 1, 2015, Illinois made significant changes to its laws regarding spousal maintenance. The formula for determining maintenance underwent significant alteration. This revives an ongoing debate among Muslim scholars and attorneys, however: a non-religious court may order spousal support, but it is generally considered to be haram amongst Islamic faithful. Divorce laws in the United States take precedence over religious laws, but within Islamic law itself, there is a growing trend to argue in favor of maintenance, under the Islamic principle of mut‘at-al-ṭalāq. It is possible for some to reconcile the two bodies of law.

Traditional Rationale

Generally, under traditional Islamic law, post-divorce maintenance was held to be haram because it was seen as an "additional" benefit to the wife. She was said to have “exhausted her share” during the marriage by being fed, clothed and sheltered by her husband. Support was permissible during the three-month religiously imposed waiting period (“‘iddat al-ṭalāq”) but not afterward.

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Islamic divorce attorney, Illinois divorce attorney, Islamic family law attorney, Islamic law can be quite complex in several areas, none more so than divorce. While standard secular divorce has many different requirements and stages, there are certain common occurrences that conflict with Islamic principles. Sometimes you may require the services of an experienced Islamic family law attorney in order to successfully navigate these obstacles in an Islamically acceptable way.

Who Keeps the Mahr?

Mahr, often incorrectly translated as “dowry,” means a gift from the groom to the bride upon the occasion of their wedding. There has been much ink spilled on the question of whether or not a wife may keep her mahr even after divorce. The short answer depends on who possesses the right of divorce and who initiates it.

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hire a lawyer when buying a house, Oak Brook real estate lawyer, Muslim law attorneyBuying or selling a home can be one of the major turning points in the life of a person or a family. However, the process can become extremely complex. Some believe that they can manage by themselves, but in truth, there are several aspects of home buying and selling that can cause real problems if not handled appropriately by a competent real estate legal professional.

Experience and Support

The main reason to hire a real estate attorney to help with your home sale or purchase is their experience. Real estate, unlike many other legal fields, is infinitely complex. It is not uncommon for a home buyer or seller to let their agent act on their behalf, only to discover they have missed some integral part of the purchase agreement--some covenant or restriction--that binds them to performance. If an unusual situation crops up, most laymen are not going to be familiar enough with the law to be able to successfully negotiate.

In addition, many find it a great help to have someone who knows the law acting on their behalf. While obviously, the significant majority of real estate agents are entirely legitimate, there are many who misrepresent themselves or their listings. Chicagoland real estate fraud is still, unfortunately, a thriving business. Real estate attorneys are trained to spot inconsistencies in purchase agreements and leases, and can be the difference between a successful move and a scam being rewarded.

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Posted on in Estate Planning
By Ausaf Farooqi, Esq.

muslim-prenuptial-agreementsPicture this scenario. You are about to invest between $50,000-$150,000 in a business venture. The business venture has about a 50% chance of failure. If the venture fails, the losses incurred will include the entire initial investment as well as possibly tens of thousands of dollars more in additional costs and legal fees. You can, however, protect yourself substantially from future costs, legal fees, and recoup part of your initial investments if you enter into a contract prior to the investment. The cost of that insurance would likely be between $2000-$3000, split between the two parties entering into the business venture.

Given the probability of failure and the potential sunken costs, it would be almost irresponsible to enter the business venture without entering into an initial contract to protect yourself and as much of your investment as possible. The reality is, however, that Muslims enter into such a venture nearly every day without contemplating how to protect themselves from the failure of that venture.

Marriage is difficult and expensive. For Muslims, there are often two wedding ceremonies – the Nikkah and its reception and the Walimah. Many of the different ethnic cultures among Muslims have additional wedding related ceremonies and practices. The average cost for these events range between $30,000 - $100,000.

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