Asalaamu alaiykum respected Mufti and Allah’s richest rewards and choicest blessings be upon you for the wonderful work you are doing.
I would like to clarify my understanding, based on an interesting question that was asked and answered on the live Islamic Q&A programme which is broadcast on DSTv Islam Channel 347 in the evenings.
The question was whether or not a court-registered marriage in the UK would be recognised from an Islamic perspective, where no actual Nikah took place. The answer was that for the following reasons the marriage is recognised Islamically: firstly, the bride gave her consent and married out of her own free will, secondly, that her parents also agreed to the marriage and the mother was present at the registration of the marriage (the father lives in a different country), thirdly and most importantly, that both bride and groom were Muslims when they married each other.
The evidence given was that in the time of the Prophet (saw), Fatima (ra)’s husband did not accept Islam so the Prophet (saw) cast him out and Fatima and him were separated. When he came to accept Islam, he was re-united with Fatima with no Nikah being performed. The additional examples or evidence given were that a lot of the Sahaba were not born to Islam but to other religions and that when married couples accepted Islam, they were accepted as a married couple and a Nikah was not performed upon them accepting Islam. This was interpretted by the Scholar providing the answer as evidence that the previous marriage was recognised and accepted by the first Muslims and the fact that Nabi (saw) did not force these early Muslims to have a Nikah when they accepted Islam was offered as further proof for the argument.
Please could Mufti clarify for me how accurate the answer/response that was provided is, and offer his opinion on the subject based on Quaran and Hadith?