If the DNA test report shows traits of lunacy,
can the marriage be quashed on this basis?
If the DNA test report of a husband shows traits of lunacy, can the wife demand separation or quashing of the marriage on this basis alone?
A marriage is a relationship based on mutual love and affection. For this reason, the Shariah permits that we may see the one whom we want to marry. Similarly the Shariah says that marriage should be between compatible people (Kufu) so that the relationship of the husband and the wife becomes lasting. If for any reason, the relationship of the husband and the wife deteriorates, then steps will be taken to remove the cause of this. If those causes cannot be removed, then the spouses are given the right to either stay in the marriage or end the relationship.
Among those causes which impel quashing of a marriage, the scholars have mentioned lunacy, leprosy, etc. ‘Allama Kasaani (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) writes:
Translation: It is compulsory for a man to be free of every kind of defect which makes it difficult for a woman to stay with him, like lunacy, leprosy – so much so that the marriage can be annulled due to this. (Badaa’i Us Sanaa’i, Vol. 2, Pg. No. 639)
Imam Malik, Imam Shafa’ee, Imam Ahmed bin Hambal and from Imams of the Hanafi school, Imam Muhammad (May Allah shower His Mercy on them) hold that a woman can demand quashing of marriage. In the Hanafi school of jurisprudence, the Fatwa (edict) is on the opinion of Imam Muhammad (May Allah shower His Mercy on him). However, the jurists have described this in some detail. They have categorized lunacy into 2 categories:
If the lunacy is of the kind that it is permanent, then the wife has the right to get the marriage quashed immediately.
Lunacy which is treatable
If the lunacy is of the kind that it comes and goes, then the husband will be given the time of a year to get it treated. If even after a year the lunacy does not abate, then the wife has the right to get the marriage quashed.
It is mentioned in Fatawa A’alamgiri:
Translation: Imam Muhammad (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) said: If the lunacy is temporary, then a period of 1 year will be given the way time is given for (treatment of) impotency. If complete health is not regained after 1 year, then the woman has the right (to either continue the marriage or end it). If the lunacy is of a permanent sort, then the situation is similar to that of a castrated man. This is the opinion that we hold…. (Fatawa A’alamgiri, Vol. 1, Pg. No. 526)
In light of the aforementioned details, we can say that if a DNA test report shows traits of (possible) lunacy, then the wife cannot demand the marriage to be declared null and void only on this basis. Lunacy is not something of the nature that can be concealed. If lunacy is expressed through the actions of the husband and expert doctors declare it to be non-treatable and permanent, then the wife has the right to demand that the marriage be declared null and void and the judge (Qaadhi) will do so on the demand of the wife.
However, if the lunacy is of a temporary or treatable nature, then the wife will not have the right to declare the marriage null and void on this basis. Instead, the time period of 1 year will be given for treatment. If the disease doesn’t go away in a year, then the wife has the right to either stay in the marriage or end it.