Wa `alaykum As-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
In this fatwa:
1- If your ex-wife realizes it was a mistake on her part to marry that man, she must get a divorce from him. You are, however, not allowed to push her to do that.
2- If she seeks to divorce him on her own free will, and all the requisite procedures are completed, then you can, if she chooses to do so, remarry her.
In responding to your question, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:
Brother, you, first of all, have to keep in mind the fact that divorce is the most hated permissible thing in the sight of Allah. It dissolves families and deprives children of a family atmosphere.
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “The most hateful permissible thing (halal) in the sight of Allah is divorce.” (Reported by Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah)
The spouses should avoid divorce as much as possible. If they have difficulties and problems they should be patient and forbearing.
They have to try to work out their differences and seek help from their relatives, friends, or professional counselors.
If I understand your question correctly, your ex-wife married the man after you had divorced her a second time and after her iddah (waiting period) had expired. If that is the case then her marriage with him is perfectly valid in Islam.
Iddah is only three months or three menstrual cycles, therefore, this is more than sufficient time for this purpose.
Now if your ex-wife realizes it was a mistake on her part to do so, she must get a divorce from him. You are, however, not allowed to push her to do that.
If, however, she does seek to divorce him on her own free will, and all the requisite procedures are completed, then you can, if she chooses to do so, remarry her. But you have no right on her more than any other marriage suitor who may express willingness to marry her.
Having said this, I must also caution you against exercising divorce impulsively, for by doing so we are playing with the laws of Allah and thus end up creating complications for ourselves. May Allah guide us all to the right decisions and may He grant us rectitude in words and deeds, and forgive us our outward and inward sins, both major and minor Ameen.
Almighty Allah knows best.
Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.