Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Qatari wedding update (Arab wedding)

So I had a chat with my friend about marriage contracts and what typically went in them. Without going into details about what is in his marriage contract he did say that typically Qatari marriage contracts will have clauses about the following:

• How much money/jewelry/other things she receives (we might refer to this as a dowry but I believe it is actually called Mahr in Arabic)
• Whether she is allowed to work
• Whether she is allowed to drive (?! This might be the Saudi influence here since in Saudi Arabia women aren't allowed to drive)
• Whether they will have their own home
• Possibly who is responsible for paying for the wedding, this is typically the groom and his family anyway but I was told that nowadays some families split the costs, or the bride's family will pay for the bride's celebration. Weddings are expensive.

My friend did clarify there will be some things you won't see in the contract:

• How many children they will have. (I guess you get as many as Allah gives you)
• Whether he can have more than one wife. The Qur'an allows a man to have four wives so you cannot exclude that right.

I find the pragmatism of the marriage contract to be very interesting. While in the West we will say wedding vows full of more nebulous promises here in Qatar a marriage is a contractual obligation, complete with specific requirements that need to be adhered to. I'm assuming that the bride can petition for divorce for breach of contract should her husband not meet any of the conditions.

1 comment:

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