Informing suitor about number of previous marriages
Does a man or woman who was gotten married many times have to inform the one they want to marry about how many times they were married in the past? For example, if a woman was married 8 times in the past, does she have to tell the man whom she wants to marry that she was married 8 times?
All perfect praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad, sallallahu &699;alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.
The fact that a man or a woman was previously married is not a flaw that must be disclosed at the time of the engagement. Neither of them is obliged to inform the other of their previous marriage or to disclose the number of the previous marriages. However, if the suitor stipulated that the bride must be a virgin, it is impermissible for her to conceal that she is not a virgin, as this would be cheating. Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, reported that the Prophet, sallallahu &699;alayhi wa sallam, said, “Whoever cheats us is not one of us.” [Muslim]
If she deceives him and he found out after the marriage that she was not a virgin, he is entitled to annul the marriage contract if he wishes. The Hanbali scholar Al-Buhooti said, “If he stipulates that she be a virgin and then finds out that she is not, he is given the choice (either to retain the marriage or terminate it).”
There is a difference of opinion among the scholars in this regard.