Hadanah or Custody of Children

Section 85. Persons entitled to custody of a child

(1) Subject to section 86, the mother shall be of all persons the best entitled to the custody of her infant children during the connubial relationship as well as after its dissolution.

(2) Where the Court is of the opinion that the mother is disqualified under Islamic Law from having the right to hadanah or custody of her children, the right shall, subject to subsection (3), pass to one of the following persons in the following order of preference, that is to say-
Provided that the custody of such person does not affect the welfare of the child.

(3) No man shall have a right to the custody of a female child unless he is a muhrim, that is to say, he stands to her within the prohibited degrees of relationship.

(4) Subject to sections 86 and 88, where there are several persons of the same line or degree, all equally qualified and willing to take charge of the child, the custody shall be entrusted to the one most virtuous who shows the greatest tenderness to the child, and where all are equally virtuous, then the senior among them in age shall have the priority.

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