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Last Updated: 2012/04/14
Summary of question
What conditions make it obligatory for one to financially support one’s wife?
Does financially supporting the wife become obligatory after the first instance of intercourse? That is, even if it is the period in which the ‘Aqd has been recited but she is still living at her father’s house, is it obligatory to financially support her after the first case of sexual intimacy?
Concise answer

Financially supporting the wife becomes obligatory upon the husband when all the following conditions are met:

  1. The marriage contract is a permanent one
  2. The female meets the requirements for entering into wedlock (financially supporting a female child who does not meet the requirements for entering into wedlock, is not obligatory).
  3. The wife is obedient in cases where it is obligatory for her to obey the husband (obedience in matters related to wedlock).[1] In other words, in matters relating to marriage, she shows submissiveness to the husband (if the female is disobedient in these matters, financially supporting her is not obligatory).[2]

His Eminence, Imām Khumaynī (ra) in response to this question has stated: If the wife of a husband is obedient (is in deference to her husband in matrimonial issues), to financially support her is obligatory for the husband, even if he has not yet brought her to his own home.[3]

Therefore according to the above, it is not necessary to indulge in intercourse for the maintenance of the wife to become obligatory upon the husband. If the above conditions are met, it is obligatory upon the husband to financially support the wife even if she is still living at her father’s house.


[1] Tahrir al-Wasilah, vol. 2, p. 280, chapter on Nafaqat.

[2] Tahrir al-Wasilah, vol. 2, pp. 313-314; Jami’ al-Masa’il (of Ayatullah Bahjat), vol. 3, p. 587.

[3] Istifta’at of Imam Khumayni, vol. 3, p. 202, inquiry 14.


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