The Druze Divorce in USA

By

Prof. Gabriel Sawma

 

Introduction to the Druze Community in USA

A study of the Druze community in the United States can be understood within the context of the Druze people and their presence in the Middle East, mainly in Lebanon, Syria, and Israel. The faith is called Tawheed and takes its origin from Shi’a Islam under the guidance of the sixth Fatimid caliph Abu Ali Al-Mansur Al-Aziz Bi-Allah, popularly known as Al-Hakim Bi-Amr Allah. This caliph is considered by the adherents of the Druze faith a man with great wisdom and knowledge. (For in depth analysis of the Druze faith, refer to The Druze Faith by Sami Makarem, New York, Caravan Books, 1974).

Although there are Druze in Israel, Syria and Jordan, the majority are present in Lebanon, where they are recognized as a minority who possess a great political influence in that country. Their influence goes back to the Ottoman period.

 

Development of the the Druze Personal Status Law

During the Ottoman Empire, the Islamic family law (Personal Status Law), was applied to the Muslim communities according to the Hanafi School of Thought. (For more information on Muslim Family Law under the Ottoman Empire, see The View from Istanbul: Lebanon and the Druze Emirate n the Ottoman Chancery Documents 1541-1711 by Abdul-Rahim Abu-Husayni, New York, Center for Lebanese Studies in association with I.B. Tauris Publications, 2004)

The Ottoman family law remained in force in Lebanon until 1926 when the French government, which had a Mandate over Lebanon, decided to modify it in order to give separate legal status for the Shi’a community. In December of 1926, the French authority recognized the Druze of Lebanon as an independent sect. And, in 1948, the Druze Personal Status Law was enacted for the purpose of organizing the court system for the community. The final Personal Status Law (PSL) governing the Druze community was issued on March 5, 1960. The PSL governs all aspects of family law for the Druze community in Lebanon. However, when a case has no legal ruling in the PSL, the judge may apply the Hanafi code of the Sunni Muslims, taking into account the Druze traditions, customs and the principles of justice and equality. Before 1948, family cases such as marriage, divorce, custody of the children and inheritance, were settled in accordance with the prevailing Islamic law according to the Hanafi provisions taking into consideration the practices and customs of the Druze community. (For more on the Druze tradition, see Nizam al-Mowahedine Al-Dorouz Al-Ijtimaa’; fi sijil alahkam al mazhabiat lil qadi Ahmad Taqqi Al-Dine, 1866-1870 by Taqii Al-Dine, Slieman and Abou=Chakra, Dar Isharar lil Tiba’at Wa Al-Nashir Wa Al-Tawzee’, Beirut, 2006)

 

The Current Personal Status Law of the Druze in Lebanon

Divorce is defined as the termination of a marriage contract. According to Article 37 of the PSL, the judge of the Druze community has solely the authority to end the marriage. Once the divorce order is issued by the judge, the husband is not allowed to remarry his divorced wife. (Article 38). Divorced members of the Druze community wish to remarry may obtain a civil marriage outside the country or change their religion.

Contrary to the rules of Islamic divorce, a Druze man cannot divorce his wife unilaterally. Under the Islamic rules, a Muslim man can divorce his wife anytime and in any place by just uttering “I divorce you”, or “I divorce my wife”, or “my wife is divorced.” Such a rule is not acceptable in a Druze divorce according to Article 37. Once a divorce application is submitted to the court, the judge is required by law to appoint two adjudicators for reconciliation:

“In a dispute between husband and wife, the judge shall appoint two arbitrators from both families. If none of their relatives has the legal capacity to act as arbitrator, the judge shall appoint an outsider to conduct the reconciliation.”

If the judge finds the husband is at fault, he will order the husband to pay the wife, balance of the mahr. According to Article 49 of the PSL, the judge has authority to order compensation for injuries caused by the husband in addition to the mahr.

The wife may seek divorce without losing her right to mahr under conditions stated in Articles 39, 40, 41, 43, 44 and 45. The conditions include wife’s right to seek divorce if the husband suffers from incurable, contagious disease, or if the husband is mentally ill, or committed an act of adultery, was imprisoned for more than five years, was absent for three years with providing maintenance to his wife for five years. Under these circumstances the wife may seek divorce without losing her mahr. On the other hand, the husband may seek divorce if the wife is considered “nashez”, i.e., refuses to have sexual relation with her husband, or leaves the house without reasonable cause and does not return back. According to Article 42 of PSL, a Druze married couple may agree to divorce amicably in front of two witnesses without having to explain the cause of divorce to the judge.

 

Types of Divorce in the Druze Community

Divorce among members of the Druze community takes one of three forms: (1) divorce by agreement (talaq bi al taradi) of the married couples before the case is presented to the court, i.e., out-of-court settlement; (2) the divorce is contested before the court, but the couples decide to settle the case after court intervention; (3) when the parties to a divorce contested their case before a judge without reaching an agreement. In such cases, the judge would issue a judgment of divorce.

 

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

 

Gabriel Sawma is a lawyer with Middle East background, and a recognized authority on Islamic law of marriage, divorce, custody of children and abduction of children to Muslim countries, Hindu marital disputes in U.S. courts, and Iran divorce in USA.

  • Professor of Middle East Constitutional and Islamic law,
  • Expert Consultant on Islamic divorce in US Courts and Canada,
  • Expert Consultant on Hindu divorce in U.S. courts,
  • Expert Consultant on Iranian Shi’a divorce in USA,
  • Expert Consultant on Islamic finance.

Admitted to the Lebanese Bar Association; Associate Member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Prof. Sawma lectured at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) in New York State and wrote many affidavits to immigration authorities and family State Courts in connection with recognition of Islamic foreign divorces in the U.S., Hindu divorces, and Iranian marital conflicts.

Taught Islamic Finance for MBA program at the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Travelled extensively to: Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Egypt, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Syria and Palestine.

Wrote many articles on Islamic and Hindu divorce in USA, custody of children in the Middle East and Central Asia; and abduction of children to Muslim countries;

Speaks, reads and writes several languages including Arabic, English, French and other Semitic languages.

Interviewed by:

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8608878.stm

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/11/11/egypt.divorce/index.html

CBN: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdwReohaIcs

FDU: http://view.fdu.edu/default.aspx?id=7899

 

Contact Information:

 

 

Email: [email protected]

Email: [email protected]

Tel. (609) 915-2237

 

For more information on our field of expertise, please visit our websites at the following links, where you will find most of our articles:

http://www.muslimdivorceinusa.com

http://www.gabrielsawma.blogspot.com

http://www.hindudivorceinuscourts.com

 

For more information on the author, please see Curriculum Vitae at this link:

http://muslimdivorceinusa.com/professor-gabriel-sawma-curriculum-vitae/

INTRODUCTION TO SHI’I FAMILY LAW OF IRAN BEFORE AND AFTER THE REVOLUTION – A COMPARATIVE STUDY

BY

PROFESSOR GABRIEL SAWMA

 

Prior to the advent of the Islamic Revolution of 1979 in Iran, family laws under the Pahlavi Dynasty (1925-79) witnessed major changes in that field, the Family protection Law of 1967 and its amendments in 1975 abolished extrajudicial divorce, instituted the wife’s right to divorce under certain conditions, limited polygamy by making it subject to judicial approval, and authorized the courts to rule on arrangements related to the maintenance of a divorced couple’s children.

In theory, the reforms under the Pahlavi rule were more advanced than the previous Iranian family laws. For example the reforms made it harder for a man to abandon his wife and prevented him from threatening her with the possibility of a sudden and rapid divorce and the loss of custody of her children. Although the new reforms embedded in the Family Protection Law remained partially based on the Shi’i Ja’fari School of law, for instance by accepting all the conditions that entitled either party to obtain a divorce, such as insanity and other disabling illnesses. These conditions were expanded and included in Article 11 an important change in the event a husband married a second wife without the consent of the first one, the latter could apply for divorce:

  • If either spouse received a prison sentence of five or more years.
  • A dangerous addiction on the part of either spouse which could, in the opinion of the court, be hazardous to the welfare of the family.
  • Marriage of the husband to another woman without the consent of his first wife.
  • When either partner abandoned the family life. This was subject to the court’s confirmation.
  • If a husband or wife has, on account of the commission of a crime repugnant to the position and dignity of the family of the other party, been, according to the final judgment of a court of law, found guilty. The question whether or not the crime is repugnant to the position and dignity of the other party shall be determined by the court after taking into consideration the position and circumstances of both the parties as well as the custom and other standards.

 

Article 14 of the Family Protection Law requires the husband to get permission from the judge in order to marry a second wife, it reads:

When a man, already having a wife, desires to marry another woman, he shall obtain permission from the court of law. The court shall give the permission only when it has taken the necessary steps, and, if possible, has made an inquiry from the present wife of the man, in order to assure the financial potentiality and ability of the man for doing justice [to both wives].

In case the man marries [another woman] without obtaining the due permission from the court, he shall be liable for the punishment provided in section 5 of the Marriage Act f 1310-16[iii] (1931-37 A.D.)

The significance of the Family Protection Law of 1967 was threefold. First, it curbed the unilateral privilege of men regarding divorce and polygamy. No longer could a man divorce his wife readily or in absentia. Nor could he marry a second wife without the permission of the court. It was mandatory for both married couple to apply to a court of law for a certificate of non-reconciliation before a divorce would be granted. Second, a woman could petition for divorce under certain condition regardless of whether the privilege of acting as her husband’s agent was stipulated in the marriage contract. Third, parent had to make arrangements for adequate care of the children before divorce could be granted.

In practice, and according to the Islamic law, a man could always marry a second wife, provided he had the financial means to do so, while a woman could only file a petition for a judicial certificate allowing her to annul the marriage.

The reform also stated that “a husband may, with the approval of the court, prevent his wife from an occupation which is repugnant to the interest of his or her family or position” (Article 15).

The Family Law was consistent with the more tolerant reading of Islam and lifting the inequity imposed on women, protecting children’s rights, and safeguarding men’s dignity. Husband and wife shared joint responsibility for the family the adult woman was entitled to self-guardianship, rather than that of a male family member, and had the freedom to exercise it independently and the minimum age of marriage was increased to eighteen for both men and women.

As to the mut’a marriages, the Family Protection Law did not touch that institution, which allows a man to contract a temporary marriage according to Shi’a law.

In general, while the Family Protection Law of 1967 constituted an important step toward reducing discrimination against women, its impact was limited in its scope, and soon the Law was replaced aftermath of the Islamic Revolution of 1979.

 

THE IMPACT OF ISLAMIC REVOLUTION ON IRANIAN FAMILY LAW

As soon as Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeni took the power in 1979, the Family Protection Law was suspended along with other laws that were considered ‘un-Islamic’. On December 1979, the Revolution adopted a new Constitution based on Islamic shari’a. Article 19 declares that “All people of Iran, whatever the ethnic group or tribe to which they belong, enjoy equal rights and color, race, language, and the like, do[es] not bestow any privilege”.

Article 21 deals exclusively with women, prescribing, that the government must “create a favorable environment for the restoration of [women’s rights; respect mothers, particularly during pregnancy and childbearing; support widows, aged women and women without support and award guardianship of children to worthy mothers, in order to protect the interests of the children, in the absence of a legal guardian”. This notion is also stated in the preamble of the Constitution where it reads:

Women were drawn away from the family unit and the condition of being a ‘mere thing’, or ‘being a mere tool for works’ in the service of consumerism and exploitation. Re-assumption of the task of bringing up religiously minded men and women, ready to work and fight together in life’s fields of activity, is a serious and precious duty of motherhood.

It is important to note that the Revolution granted women ‘intellectual rights’ unseen before in the history of Iran. Both the preamble and the first paragraph of Article 21 underlined the need to grant women for their active part in the Revolution their ‘intellectual rights.’ This made the government of Iran embark on an extensive policy for educating women, a policy that resulted in one of the highest levels of female education in the entire region.

This policy, however, contrasted with the new Civil Code of 1979, which penalized women by authorizing a minimum marriage age of nine years for girls the marriage of virgin women required the consent of their fathers; polygamy was reinstated without any legal restrains; commanded a wife’s obedience to her husband as a necessary condition in order to obtain maintenance; allowed mut’a marriage as a recognized institution (Articles 1075-77);  children were placed in the custody of the father in the event of divorce because “any child born during married life belongs to the husband” (Article 1158). And, in compliance with Qur’anic provisions, Article 1133 of the Civil Code stated that “A husband can repudiate his wife any time he wishes.” Additionally, the Special Civil Courts Act Article 3/2 provides that:

If a husband wishes a divorce in accordance with Article 1133 of the Civil Code, the court must first refer the case to arbitration in conformity with the Holy verse (i.e. the Qur’an): ‘If you fear a breach between the two, bring forth an arbiter from his people and from her people an arbiter, if they desire to set things right; God will compose their differences; surely God is all-knowing, all-aware.’ Permission to divorce shall be granted to the husband, if reconciliation between the spouses has not materialized.

This means that, in compliance with the Qur’an, a husband is guaranteed divorce without having to provide any excuse for it, but there has to be a process of arbitration. The law requires that process to be handled by a judge. Article 1109 of the Civil Code allows a husband to invoke his wife’s disobedience (nushuz) in order to avoid paying her the maintenance due during the idda.

 

MORE POST REVOLUTION CHANGES TO FAMILY LAW

As we noticed in the previous paragraph, the new law was more adaptive to the Qur’an than the pre-Revolution Family Protection Law, and it took away some of the gains that women were able to achieve under the Pahlavi rule. But the rapid changes in the social and educational aspects of the Iranian society after the Revolution, followed by the Iran-Iraq war (1980-88), brought a gradual modification to the laws. The war forced women, to leave their homes and seek work outside. The period also witnessed a rise in women’s’ high education and made them compete for better positions in the job market. These two factors pushed women to delay their marriage and have fewer children. United Nation’s Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs says that between 1975 and 1980, the total fertility number was 6.5. The projected level for Iran’s 2005 to 2010 birth rate is fewer than two.

The competition in job opportunities in Iran created a conflict in the sphere of family. Women became influential in the public arena and started competing with men in the work force, and female organization embarked on efforts to amend the family law. In early 1982, and under pressure, the Iranian Parliament (Majles) added two provisions to the marriage contract first; the divorce wife was given the right to claim half of the wealth acquired during marriage, as long as the divorce was not deemed her fault. It delegates the right of divorce to the wife, through the intermediary of the court, where certain conditions occurs.

Articles 181 and 1883 of the Civil Code stated that the children of martyrs were to be under the paternal grandfather’s custody. This meant that the payment for the care of the orphans made by the Martyr’s Foundation also went to them. Under pressure from women organizations in Iran, the parliament passed a bill transferring the right of guardianship and tutorship of the martyr’s minors to their mothers, even after a mother’s remarriage.

In 1987, the Iranian parliament approved more benefits for widows and minors of the martyrs mainly better pensions for them, which is the equivalent of the late husband’s last salary. The Martyr’s Foundation also contributed with several benefits, such as free housing and free school tuition.

In 1989 the parliament established a new procedure for men who divorce their wives, the civil courts which have the right to approve a divorce. Thus, in order to divorce, a man had to produce good reasons and the court has the authority to consider those reasons as sufficient and may refuse the divorce. But this seems to violate the Qur’anic provision, which allows a man to divorce his wife, anytime and in any place of his choosing.

 

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

Gabriel Sawma is a lawyer with Middle East background, and a recognized authority on Islamic law of marriage, divorce and custody of children, Hindu marital disputes in U.S. courts, and Iran divorce in USA.

  • Professor of Middle East Constitutional and Islamic law,
  • Expert Consultant on Islamic divorce in US Courts and Canada,
  • Expert Consultant on Hindu divorce in U.S. courts,
  • Expert Consultant on Iranian Shi’a divorce in USA,
  • Expert Consultant on Islamic finance.

Admitted to the Lebanese Bar Association; Associate Member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Prof. Sawma lectured at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) in New York State and wrote many affidavits to immigration authorities, Federal Courts, and family State Courts in connection with recognition of Islamic foreign divorces in the U.S., Hindu divorces, and Iranian marital conflicts.

Taught Islamic Finance for MBA program at the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Travelled extensively to: Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Egypt, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Syria and Palestine.

Wrote many articles on Islamic and Hindu divorce in USA, custody of children in the Middle East and Central Asia; and on abduction of children to Muslim countries;

Speaks, reads and writes several languages including Arabic, English, French and others.

Interviewed by:

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8608878.stm

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/11/11/egypt.divorce/index.html

CBN: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdwReohaIcs

FDU: http://view.fdu.edu/default.aspx?id=7899

 

Contact Information:

 

Email: [email protected]

Email: [email protected]

Tel. (609) 915-2237

For more information on Iranian marriage, divorce, custody of the children and inheritance, please read our articles on the following links:

http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

http://www.gabrielsawma.blogspot.com

 

For more information on the author, please see Curriculum Vitae at this link: http://muslimdivorceinusa.com/professor-gabriel-sawma-curriculum-vitae/

ABDUCTION OF CHILDREN TO IRAN

BY

Professor Gabriel Sawma

 

INTRODUCTION

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction was adopted on October 25, 1980. The purpose of the Convention was to address the increasing problem of abduction of children on international scale within the context of international law and at the same time, taking into account the rights of custody and visitation under national law. In most cases, the child is taken by one spouse to another country. He wakes up in that country surrounded by people he or she never met before, and told these are your relatives, whom the child do not understand their language. The house is different from the child’s house; the neighborhood looks different from the child’s neighborhood at home. But the child is told that this is the home he or she will be living in, and the left-behind parent will not be with the child anymore.

According to the preamble, “the Convention aims to protect children’s internationally from the harmful effects of their wrongful removal or retention and to establish procedures to ensure their prompt return to the State of their habitual residence.”

The United States ratified the Hague Convention on July 1, 1988 through enabling legislation codified by the International Child Abduction Remedies Act (ICARA). Among the countries whose majority of population are Muslims, only Turkey and Bosnia have ratified the Hague Convention in addition to Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in Central Asia. Countries utilizing Islamic Shari’a-based family law are reluctant to sign on the convention for its non-compliance with Islamic religious doctrines regarding women and children.

 

MARRIAGES BETWEEN PEOPLE OF DIFFERENT RELIGIOUS, ETHNIC AND CULTURAL GROUPS.

With the increased number of immigrants to the United States, Canada and Europe from countries whose majority of population are Muslims, marriages between couples with different religious beliefs have given birth to children, whose religious affiliation and what language should they learn, in addition to what kind of a relationship the children will have with their grandparent and family members who live overseas. All of these and others became a factor in creating, religious, cultural and ethnic friction between the spouses. This in turn causes one spouse to abduct a child to his country of origin.

 

APPLICATION OF THE HAGUE CONVENTION

One of the goals of the Hague Convention is “to secure the prompt return of children wrongfully removed to or retained in any Contracting State” [Article 1(a)]; and “to ensure that rights of custody and of access under the law of one Contracting State are effectively respected in the other Contracting States.” [Article 1(b)]. The term “wrongfully removes” as stated in Art. 1 exists when the left-behind parent’s custody rights have been violated, and the child must be removed from his or her “habitual residence” in order to fall within the scope of the Hague Convention as described in Article 4 which reads: “The Convention shall apply to any child who was habitually resident in a Contracting State immediately before any breach of custody or access rights. The Convention shall cease to apply when the child attains the age of 16 years.”

Article 3 of the Convention states that such removal or retention is to be considered wrongful where

  • It is in breach of rights of custody attributed to a person, an institution or any other body, either jointly or alone, under the law of the State in which the child was Habitually resident immediately before the removal or retention; and
  • At the time of removal or retention those rights were actually exercised, either jointly or alone, or would have been so exercised but for the removal or retention.

The rights of custody mentioned in sub-paragraph a) above, may arise in particular by operation of law or by reason of a judicial or administrative decision, or by reason of an agreement having legal effect under the law of that State.

Article 12 establishes a one-year period during which the left-behind parent must locate the child and file a petition under the Hague Convention. Article 12 reads:

Where a child has been wrongfully removed or retained in terms of Article 3, and, at the date of the commencement of the proceedings before the judicial or administrative authority of the Contracting State where the child is, a period of less than one year has elapsed from the date of the wrongful removal or retention, the authority concerned shall order the return of the child forthwith.

The judicial or administrative authority, even where the proceedings have been commenced after the expiration of the period of one year referred to in the preceding paragraph, shall also order the return of the child, unless it is demonstrated that the child is now settled in its new environment.

Where the judicial or administrative authority in the requested States has reason to believe that the child has been taken to another State, it may stay the proceedings or dismiss the application for the return of the child.

 

CUSTODY LAW OF IRAN

Iran is not a signatory to the Hague Convention on Child Abduction, and therefore, recovery of children is obstructed by this non-signatory status. Nothing can be done legally to bring back a child who is abducted by one parent from the United States to Iran. You may want to read this article in The Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/feature/wp/2013/04/04/her-husband-had-taken-their-young-daughter-to-iran-she-was-determined-to-get-the-child-back/

If the abduction is successful, the child will be raised with false beliefs concerning the left-behind parent and often the other parent’s country and value. It is important to note that abduction of girls to Iran, in particular, is really tragic; they will be raised with the traditions that will make girls subservient to men and their marriages, divorces, inheritance, and custody of their children will be ruled according to Islamic Shari’a. It is unlikely that girls in Iran will have the basic comforts and securities that the United States offers.

Women in the USA, wanting to marry men from any country in the Middle East, should consult with experts in this field and should read more about abduction of children. Remember the law of Iran gives custody of the children at age 2 for boys and age 7 to girls. So there is no violation of law in Iran if the husband takes his children to his home country and decides not to return them back to the United States.

In Iran, mothers are given few rights in regard to custody of their children, who are viewed as belonging to their fathers. The custody of children in Iran is two years for boys and seven for girls. However, if the mother remarries another husband, her custody reverts to the first husband. There is no enforcement mechanism for a mother to visit her children, and in most cases, women may decide to remain in an unhappy marriage so that they do not lose their children.  After the Iran-Iraq War (1980-88), widows of the war managed to pressure the government of Iran to change the law to allow them to retain custody of their children even after remarrying.

The Islamic law of Iran allows a man to marry up to four permanent wives at any one time, concurrent with as many temporary marriages as he can afford. Article 6 of the marriage and Divorce Act of 1937 requires that the prospective husband must declare whether or not he already has a wife. According to Article 1041 of the Iranian Civil Code, the age of marriage is set at 9 years for girls and 15 years for boys.  Nevertheless, with the consent of his or her guardian, a minor may be permitted to marry before reaching age of majority. The Note to Article 1041 of the Civil Code thus specifies: “With the consent of the guardian, marriage of the independent child may be permitted even before the age of majority, provided that the best interest of the said child is taken into account.” There is no reference to the mother’s right or responsibility in this matter.

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

Gabriel Sawma is a lawyer with Middle East background, and a recognized authority on Islamic law of marriage, divorce and custody of children, Hindu marital disputes in U.S. courts, and Iran divorce in USA.

Professor of Middle East Constitutional Law and Islamic law; Expert Consultant on Islamic divorce in US Courts and Canada. Expert Consultant on Hindu divorce in U.S. courts and Iranian divorce in USA.

Admitted to the Lebanese Bar Association; former Associate Member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Prof. Sawma lectured at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) in New York State and wrote many affidavits to immigration authorities, Federal Courts, and family State Courts in connection with recognition of Islamic foreign divorces in the U.S., Hindu divorces, and Iranian marital conflicts.

Taught Islamic Finance for MBA program at the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Travelled numerous times to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and the Arabian Gulf States, Jordan, Syria, Palestine, and wrote extensively on Islamic and Hindu divorces, custody of children in USA and abroad, and abduction of children to Muslim countries.

Speaks, reads and writes several languages including Arabic, English, French and others

Interviewed by:

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8608878.stm

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/11/11/egypt.divorce/index.html

CBN: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdwReohaIcs

FDU: http://view.fdu.edu/default.aspx?id=7899

 

Contact Information:

 

Email: [email protected]

Email: [email protected]

Tel. (609) 915-2237

 

Or visit our websites at the following links:

http://www.islamicdivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.gabrielsawma.blogspot.com

http://www.hindudivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

http://www.abductionofchildrentomuslimcountries.com

 

For more information on the author, please see Curriculum Vitae at this link:

http://muslimdivorceinusa.com/professor-gabriel-sawma-curriculum-vitae/

Divorce under Family Protection Law 1967 of Iran

By

Professor Gabriel Sawma

 

Before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, matters of personal status in Iran were governed by the Family Protection Law of 1967. At the time of its enactment the law was regarded as one of the most radical reform of traditional Islamic divorce in the Muslim world. The law departed from the classical Ithnai Ashari Shi’a law.

The law of 1967 contained a total of twenty four articles; It raised the minimum age for marriage to fifteen years for girls and eighteen years for boys. It abolished husband’s right to polygamy, mut’ah (temporary) marriage, and divorce outside of the court. Family courts were established to handle cases involving marital disputes.

According to Article 8 of the Family Protection Law, the husband could not divorce his wife without first applying to the court for a certificate of non-reconciliation. The court in turn was required to call for reconciliation between the parties by designating one or two arbitrators to act as intermediaries in order to bring about reconciliation. If no reconciliation is reached, the court will issue a Certificate of Non-Reconciliation. The requirement to produce a certificate of non-reconciliation also applied to a wife who had the power of attorney to repudiate herself if her husband did not abide by the stipulations included in the marriage contract. This article is a departure from Article 1133 of the Civil Code of 1928 which stated “A husband has the right to divorce his wife whenever he desires”, and “a divorce shall take place only when the prescribed words have been expressed and these are at least two just men have listened to the prescribed words when expressed.” (See Article 1134 of Civil Code, 1968). Article 9 placed the responsibility for reaching agreement of maintenance and child custody in the hands of the couple who jointly sought a divorce. If the couple could not reach an agreement, the court would intervene. Article 13 placed the responsibility of setting maintenance and child custody to the court in the event where one party sought a divorce. The court would take the best interest of the child when issuing an order of custody.

Under the Protection Family Law of 1967, men and women had equal rights to divorce. Article 14 specified that if the husband or wife was imprisoned for over five years, or if either of them disappeared, the time frame of five years would constitute a legitimate ground for awarding divorce. Article 15 stipulated that the husband must seek permission from the court in order to take a second wife. The court was required to decide on a case by case basis depending on evidence provided by the husband and the testimony of his wife.

The wife had the right to petition the court for divorce in the event her husband failed to provide maintenance, contracted a second marriage, or failed to treat his co-wives equally. The law allowed these elements to be part of the marriage contract so that the provisions of the contract would appear to be Islamic. The Family Protection Law was amended in 1975, raising the minimum age for marriage to eighteen for girls and twenty for boys, and modifying the financial terms of maintenance provision for divorce wives.

When the Protection Family Law of 1967 was enacted, it met with opposition by various elements of the Iranian clergy, most notably Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, because the law departed from the Ja’fary School of Jurisprudence according to Ithnai Ashar Imamates. Khomeini went so far as to declare void divorces issued according to the new law. Consequently, in 1979, after seven months of the Revolution, a Special Civil Court Act was issued in compliance with the Ithnai Ashar jurisprudence. The new law removed family cases, involving marriage, divorce, annulment, dower, maintenance, custody, and inheritance, from the civil courts and place them in Special Civil Courts presided over by religious judges. It also lowered the minimum age of marriage for girls to nine Hijra (Islamic Calendar) years, reinstated the mut’a (temporary) marriage, and man’s right to polygamy and unilateral divorce.

The 1979 law was questioned by many influential Iranian women the meaning of “Islamic justice” under the new system. Some of women’s concerns were related to the physical young women divorce by their husbands for no apparent reasons and left for destitution. Under pressure from women’s organization, Khomeini introduced a new family law, considered to be the most advanced marriage law in the entire Middle East. The Iranian Civil Code will be the topic of another article.

 

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

 

Gabriel Sawma is a lawyer with Middle East background, and a recognized authority on Islamic law of marriage, divorce and custody of children, Hindu marital disputes in U.S. courts, and Iran divorce in USA.

Professor of Middle East Constitutional Law and Islamic law; Expert Consultant on Islamic divorce in US Courts and Canada. Expert Consultant on Hindu divorce in U.S. courts and Iranian divorce in USA.

Admitted to the Lebanese Bar Association; former Associate Member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Prof. Sawma lectured at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) in New York State and wrote many affidavits to immigration authorities, Federal Courts, and family State Courts in connection with recognition of Islamic foreign divorces in the U.S., Hindu divorces, and Iranian marital conflicts.

Taught Islamic Finance for the MBA program at the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Travelled numerous times to Saudi Arabia and the Arabian Gulf States, Jordan, Syria, Palestine, and wrote extensively on Islamic and u divorces, custody of children in USA and abroad.

Speaks, reads and writes several languages including Arabic, English, French and others

Interviewed by:

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8608878.stm

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/11/11/egypt.divorce/index.html

CBN: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdwReohaIcs

FDU: http://view.fdu.edu/default.aspx?id=7899

 

Contact Information:

 

Email: [email protected]

Email: [email protected]

Tel. (609) 915-2237

 

Or visit our websites at the following links:

http://www.islamicdivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.gabrielsawma.blogspot.com

http://www.hindudivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

 

 

For more information on the author, please see Curriculum Vitae at this link:

http://muslimdivorceinusa.com/professor-gabriel-sawma-curriculum-vitae/

Nationality of Iranian Woman Marrying Non-Iranian Man

By

Professor Gabriel Sawma

 

Article 987 of the Iranian Civil Code states the following:

An Iranian woman marrying a foreign national will retain her Iranian nationality unless according to the law of the country of the husband the latter’s nationality is imposed by marriage upon the wife. But in any case, after the death of the husband or after divorce or separation, she will be re-acquire he original nationality together with all rights and privileges appertaining to it by the mere submission of an application to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to which should be annexed a certificate of the death of her husband or the document establishing the separation.

According to this article, an Iranian woman marrying a foreign national retains her Iranian nationality unless the nationality of the husband is imposed upon her under his personal status law. However, after the death of the husband or after a divorce or separation, she can re-acquire her Iranian nationality and all rights and privileges afforded there under by submitting an application to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs along with the death certificate of her husband or the concerned documents on divorce or separation.

However, according to part one of article 987, if the law of nationality of the husband’s country permits the Iranian woman to either preserve her former nationality or to acquire the nationality of her husband, then the Iranian wife who chooses to acquire the nationality of her husband for proper reasons can apply in writing to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs requesting her desire to renounce her Iranian nationality. The Ministry may agree to her request. It should be noted here that an Iranian woman who acquires foreign nationality by marriage has no right to possess immovable property in Iran if such possession amount to foreign economic domination. The same rules apply to divorce cases involving Iranian women marrying non-Iranian citizens.

According to Article 7 of the Iranian Civil Code (ICC), the law of a non-Iranian national marrying Iranian woman may be applied in matrimonial disputes. Article 7 reads:

Foreign nationals resident territory shall within the limits laid down by treaties, be bound by the laws and decrees of the Government to which they are subject in questions relating to their personal status and capacity, and similarly in question relating to rights of inheritance.

While Article 7 govern certain aspects of the personal status of both parties, the rule of procedure and formalities are governed by the law of the place where the document is registered as stated in articles 993 and 969 of the ICC:

The method of drawing up document follows the laws of the place where the document is drawn up (969);

The following events must be notified to the Census Office during the proper period and in the way stipulated by special laws and regulations

  1. All births and all abortions which may occur after the 6th month from the date of conception.
  2. Marriages, whether permanent or temporary.
  3. Divorces, whether permanent or revocable or divorce by way of waiving the remainder of the period of temporary marriage.
  4. The death of any individual.

Thus, the marriage of Iranian nationals living outside Iran is governed by the law of the place of the marriage contract for both procedural and formality issues (articles 969 and 970). The marriage of foreign citizens living in Iran is governed by Iranian law (articles 969 and 970).

As far as nullification of a marriage is concerned, substantive issues are governed by the law of the concerned country of nationality, whereas the procedure and formality for the nullification is governed by the law of the place where marriage was concluded.

Article 963 of ICC states that “If a husband and wife are not nationals of the same country, their personal and financial relations with one another will be subject to the laws of the country of the husband” unless that law runs contrary to the law of Iran, in which case Iranian law will apply.

For more information about Iranian divorce in U.S. courts, please read our articles listed on the right column of this website: http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

 

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

 

Gabriel Sawma is a lawyer with Middle East background, and a recognized authority on Islamic law of marriage, divorce and custody of children, Hindu marital disputes in U.S. courts, and Iran divorce in USA.

Professor of Middle East Constitutional Law and Islamic law; Expert Consultant on Islamic divorce in US Courts and Canada. Expert Consultant on Hindu divorce in U.S. courts and Iranian divorce in USA.

Admitted to the Lebanese Bar Association; former Associate Member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Prof. Sawma lectured at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) in New York State and wrote many affidavits to immigration authorities, Federal Courts, and family State Courts in connection with recognition of Islamic foreign divorces in the U.S., Hindu divorces, and Iranian marital conflicts.

Travelled numerous times to Saudi Arabia and the Arabian Gulf States, Jordan, Syria, Palestine, and wrote extensively on Islamic and u divorces, custody of children in USA and abroad.

Speaks, reads and writes several languages including Arabic, English, French and others

Interviewed by:

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8608878.stm

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/11/11/egypt.divorce/index.html

CBN: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdwReohaIcs

FDU: http://view.fdu.edu/default.aspx?id=7899

 

Contact Information:

 

Email: [email protected]

Email: [email protected]

Tel. (609) 915-2237

 

Or visit our websites at the following links:

http://www.islamicdivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.gabrielsawma.blogspot.com

http://www.hindudivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

 

 

For more information on the author, please see Curriculum Vitae at this link:

http://muslimdivorceinusa.com/professor-gabriel-sawma-curriculum-vitae/

Iranian Private International Law in Marital Conflicts

By

Professor Gabriel Sawma

 

Application of Iranian Law on Iranian Nationals Living Outside Iran

The personal status law of Iranian nationals residing outside Iranian territory is governed by the Iranian Civil Code (ICC). Articles 6 and 7 of the ICC state that “The laws relating to personal status, such as marriage, divorce, capacity and inheritance, shall be observed by all Iranian subjects, even if resident abroad” (Art. 6). Similar provision can apply to other issues, such as guardianship, custodianship, and adoption, as illustrated in other articles of the ICC, (see for example article 965 of the ICC). In marriages of mixed nationalities, Iranian law applies where the husband is Iranian and, where paternity is certain, this extends to the children according to articles 963 and 964 of the ICC. Iranian nationality is defined in articles 76 to 990. The entire text of the ICC is published on our website at: http://iraniandivorceinusa.com/the-civil-code-of-the-islamic-republic-of-iran/

 

Law Applicable in Personal Status to Foreign Nationals Living in Iran

Foreign Nationals residing in Iran are subject, in their personal status, to Article 7 of the ICC; it reads: “Foreign nationals resident territory shall within the limits laid down by treaties, be bound by the laws and decrees of the Government to which they are subject in questions relating to their personal status and capacity, and similarly in questions relating to rights of inheritance.” Accordingly, foreign nationals who are residing in the Iranian territory shall, within the limits laid down by the treaties and conventions, be bound by the laws and decrees of the country to which they are subject in matters related to their personal status and capacity and similarly in matters related to rights of inheritance.

It is important to note that the foreign law will be applied on personal status if the non-Iranian citizen has a legal domicile in Iran. The definition of ‘domicile’ is expressed in Article 1002 of the ICC, which reads: “The domicile of every person is the place wherein he lives and where also is the principal center of his affairs. If the place or residence of a person is different from the principal center of his affairs, the latter will be considered as his domicile.”

For more information on the Iranian divorce in USA, and custody of children, please read our articles on the right column on this website:  http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

 

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

 

Gabriel Sawma is a lawyer with Middle East background, and a recognized authority on Islamic law of marriage, divorce and custody of children, Hindu marital disputes in U.S. courts, and Iran divorce in USA.

Professor of Middle East Constitutional Law and Islamic law; Expert Consultant on Islamic divorce in US Courts and Canada. Expert Consultant on Hindu divorce in U.S. courts and Iranian divorce in USA.

Admitted to the Lebanese Bar Association; former Associate Member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Prof. Sawma lectured at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) in New York State and wrote many affidavits to immigration authorities, Federal Courts, and family State Courts in connection with recognition of Islamic foreign divorces in the U.S., Hindu divorces, and Iranian marital conflicts.

Travelled numerous times to Saudi Arabia and the Arabian Gulf States, Jordan, Syria, Palestine, and wrote extensively on Islamic and u divorces, custody of children in USA and abroad.

Speaks, reads, and writes several languages among which are: Arabic, English, and French.

Interviewed by:

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8608878.stm

CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/11/11/egypt.divorce/index.html

CBN: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdwReohaIcs

FDU: http://view.fdu.edu/default.aspx?id=7899

 

Contact Information:

 

Email: [email protected]

Email: [email protected]

Tel. (609) 915-2237

 

Or visit our websites at the following links:

http://www.islamicdivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.gabrielsawma.blogspot.com

http://www.hindudivorceinuscourts.com

http://www.iraniandivorceinusa.com

 

 

For more information on the author, please see Curriculum Vitae at this link:

http://muslimdivorceinusa.com/professor-gabriel-sawma-curriculum-vitae/

CODE OF REGISTRATION OF PERSONAL STATUS, 1976, IN IRAN

(Excerpts)
Article 12 – The birth of any infant in Iran, regardless of whether the parents have
Iranian or foreign nationality, must be notified to the representative, or to the officials of
the Personal Status Registry Office. The birth of infants of Iranian nationals residing
abroad must be notified to Consular officials of Iran in the foreign country of residence.
In case such officials are not available at the place of residence, the notification shall be
made to the nearest consular officials or to the Organization of Personal Status Registry
of the country.
Article 13 – The representative or the official of the Personal Status Registry Office in
Iran and the Consular officials of Iran outside the country, shall register the birth of any
minor in the Main Register of Status. The following information must be entered into this
Register:
1. Hour, day, month, year, and place of birth, province, city, district, village, and
date of the birth registration.
2. Name, family name and the gender of the holder of the document.
3. Name, family name, identity card number or the number of the residence permit
or passport, and the place of issuance of the identity card or residence permit or
passport, and the place of residence of the parents.
4. Name, family name, place of residence and the number of the identity card and
the place of issuance of the identity card and the relationship of the person who
registers the birth, if such a person is a person other than the parents of the
holder of the document.
5. Name, family name, identity card number and place of issuance of the identity
card and the place of residence of witnesses.
6. Name, family name and signature of the representative or the official and the
seal of the Personal Status Registry Office.
7. The number and serial code of the special page of the Main Register of Status.
8. A special place for registration of the classification number of the fingerprints of
the document’s holder.
9. A special place for registration, and a summary of information about the marriage
and divorce or death of the spouse. 10. A special place for registration of the number and serial code of the identity card
issued.
11. A special place for registration of summary information about the infant.
12. A special place for registration of the death of the individual.
13. Explanations (if any).
Note – After registration of the birth, if the minor is of Iranian nationality, the identity card
shall be issued and delivered, and notification shall be sent to the branch of the
Personal Status Registry Office of the place where the identity booklet of either of the
parents was issued, so that the birth can be registered in the Main Register of Status on
the page specified for the parents. If the minor is a foreigner, only the birth certificate
shall be issued and delivered.
Article 15 – Registration of a birth must be based on the declaration issued by the
doctor or the official obstetrician or by the authorities of the establishment in which the
minor was born. In other cases, birth of the minor shall be registered by affirmations of
two witnesses.
Note – The legal time limit for birth notification is fifteen days from the date of birth of the
infant. The date of birth and also an official holiday which falls after the last day of such
a period shall not be included in the time limit. If the birth takes place during a journey
on land, at sea or in the air, the time limit for birth notification shall start from the date of
arrival at the destination.
Article 17 – If the parents of the minor are unknown, the document shall be formulated
without the family names of the parents but with the names presumed to be those of the
parents. The correction of presumed names, or the completion of identity details shall
take place by instrument of a letter of confession, mentioned in Article 1273 of the Civil
Code of Iran or by a judgment issued by a court, or with a certificate for enumeration of
heirs. The family name shall be corrected in accordance with the rules relating to family
names. It shall not be indicated in the identity card that the names of the parents are
only presumed.
Article 22 – The death of any person, whether Iranian or foreign, and also the birth of a
still-born infant, or one who dies immediately after birth, must be notified to the official or
the representative of the Personal Status Registry Office. The death of Iranians outside
the country shall be notified to consular officials of the place of residence, or to the
nearest consular officials or to the Organization for Personal Status Registry of the
country. The officials or representatives of the Personal Status Registry Office shall
register the death of Iranians and foreigners residing in Iran. The death of Iranians
outside the country, according to the place of notification, shall be registered either by
consular officials of Iran or by the officials or representatives of the Personal Status Registry Office. The death must be registered in a certificate for death registration and
in the Main Register of Status on the pages relating to the deceased and the
deceased’s parents, and also in the identity card of the deceased. These registrations
must be signed and sealed. The death of foreigners, after being registered, shall be
notified to the district police office and a copy of the death certificate shall be sent to the
Organization for Personal Status Registry or shall be submitted to the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs.
Note – The death certificate shall be delivered to any person who requests it.
Article 37 – As soon as the Organization for Personal Status Registry receives from the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs a declaration of denunciation of nationality or the deprivation
of a person’s nationality, it is required to register the denunciation or the deprivation of
nationality in the relevant documents and registers, and must also cancel the identity
card.
Article 45 – If any doubt exists about the identity and the nationality of individuals and
the necessary documents are not presented to prove the identity or the nationality, in
order to establish the identity, the case shall be referred to the police department and in
order to establish the nationality, the case shall be referred to the security council of the
city. If the identity or the nationality is established, appropriate measures shall be taken
in accordance with the relevant regulations.

THE FAMILY PROTECTION ACT (1975) – IRAN

 IRAN

Section 1. All civil disputes arising from matrimonial relations or family litigations shall be entertained by the Divisional (Sharistãn) Courts, or, where the Divisional (Sharistãn) Courts do not exist, by the District (Bakhsh) Courts without observing the legal formalities provided in the Civil Procedure Code.

Section 2. By family litigations is meant the civil litigations taking place between a husband and wife, (or their) children, paternal grandfather, executor or guardian, in respect of the rights and obligations provided in Book Seventh (on Marriage and Divorce), Book Eighth (on Children), Book Ninth (on Family), and Book Tenth (on Legal Disability and Guardianship) of the Civil Code, as well as Sections 1005, 1006, 1028, 1029 and 1030 of the aforesaid Law and the relevant sections of the Non-Litigous Jurisdiction Act.

Section 3. The court shall carry out an investigation or take any steps it deems necessary for the throwing light on the subject of litigation and for administrating justice, as making an inquiry through witnesses or persons having knowledge of the facts or inviting the help of social workers and the like, as and how it is required.

Section 4. The court may exempt either of the parties (to a litigation) from the payment of the court fees as well as the fees of the experts and arbitrators and other (relevant) fees after declaring the party as destitute, and (while doing so) the court shall also appoint an advocate for providing legal aid to the said party.

In case the party declared as destitute by the court is the wining party (in the litigation), the losing party shall be liable to the payment of the aforesaid fees as well as (the fees of) the aforesaid advocate.

Section 5. The advocates and experts mentioned in the above section shall be bound to obey the orders of the court.

Section 6. Except in the cases relating to the actual subject of marriage and divorce, the court shall refer all plaints by either of the parties in case of (civil) litigation for arbitration by one or three persons, who shall give a decision on the case within the period appointed by the court.

In case the court finds that the said plain is intended to evade the consideration of the case or to prolong its proceedings, it shall refuse to entertain the plaint.

The arbitration under this Act shall not be governed by the conditions of arbitration provided in the Civil Procedure Code.

Section 7. The arbitrator, or arbitrators, shall endeavour to bring about a reconciliation between the parties, and in case of failure shall give a verdict on the subject-matter of the litigation within the period prescribed by the court and submit it to the court.

The verdict of the arbitrator (or arbitrators) shall be communicated by the court to both parties, and the parties may intimate the court about their objection (if any) on the verdict within a period of ten days from the date of receipt thereof.

In case the parties agree to the verdict of the arbitrator (or arbitrators) or fail to intimate the court about their objection on the verdict within the prescribed period, the court shall order the enforcement of the verdict. In case (either of) the parties have an objection on the verdict, the court shall hold a special session and consider the objection and shall give its own decision in the case. This decision of the court shall be final.

In case the court has not received the verdict of the (arbitrator or) arbitrators within the prescribed period, it shall directly take up the consideration of the case and give its consideration thereon.

Section 8. The prescribed words (Sîghah) of divorce shall be pronounced after the court has considered the relevant case and issued a certificate of non-reconciliation between the parties.

A person desirous of obtaining the aforesaid certificate of non-reconciliation between the parties shall apply to the court for issuing him or her such certificate.

The applicant should also mention the exact reasons for obtaining the aforesaid certificate.

On receipt of the application, the court shall directly, or, if it deems necessary, through an arbitrator or arbitrators, endeavour to bring about a compromise between the husband and wife, and prevent the occurrence of a divorce.

In case all the efforts of the court to bring about a reconciliation fail to bear the desired result, the court shall issue a certificate of non-reconciliation between the parties.

On receipt of the aforesaid certificate, the Divorce (Registration) Office shall take necessary action for the pronouncement of the divorce and its registration.

Section 9. In case an agreement has been reached between the husband and wife over the divorce, the parties shall give a notice of their agreement to the court, and the court shall issue (them) a certificate of non-reconciliation.

In case the spouses in their notice to the court (about their agreement over divorce) fail to propose a satisfactory agreement for the custody of the children and the payment of the expenditure in respect thereof, the court shall act in accordance with section 13 of this Act.

In case the arrangement for the custody of the children made by the spouses fails to work after the enforcement of the divorce, the court shall act in accordance with section 13 of this Act on receipt of a notice by either of the parents or any near relative of the child, or the Divisional (Sharistãn) Public Prosecutor.

Section 10. If a wife intends to divorce herself on behalf of her husband and also in case of section 4 of the Marriage Act, she shall (first) obtain from the court a certificate of non-reconciliation provided in section 8 above.

Section 11. In addition to the cases mentioned in the Civil Code, a husband or wife may also apply to the court for issuing him or her a certificate of non-reconciliation in the following cases”

  1. If the husband or wife has, according to the final judgment of a court of law, been sentenced to an imprisonment for a period of five years or more, or the payment of a fine in case of failure of which a person is liable to undergo an imprisonment for a period of five years (or more), or to an imprisonment and fine jointly resulting in an imprisonment for a period of five years or more, and (further, in case) the judgment for imprisonment or fine is enforceable.
  2. If the husband or wife has been addicted to anything harmful which, according to the judgment of the court, is detrimental to the very basis of the family life and renders the continuation of the marital life impossible.
  3. If the husband marries another woman without the consent of the first wife.
  4. If the husband or wife abandons the family life. The question whether or not a husband or wife has abandoned the family life shall be determined by the court.
  5. If a husband or wife has, on account of the commission of a crime repugnant to the position and dignity of the family of the other party, been, according to the final judgment of a court of law, found guilty. The question whether or not the crime is repugnant to the position and dignity of the other party shall be determined by the court after taking into consideration the position and circumstances of both the parties as well as the custom and other (usual) standards.

Section 12. In cases of disputes when a certificate of non-reconciliation is issued, the court shall determine and order the method of custody of the children and the amount of maintenance (payable to the wife by the husband after separation) during the ‘Iddah after taking into consideration the moral and financial position of the husband and wife as well as the interest of the children. The court shall mention in the certificate of non-reconciliation the arrangement made for the custody of the children after the divorce. In case the children are required to be kept in the custody of the mother or any other person, the arrangement for the custody as well as the total expenditure in respect thereof shall also be determined (by the court).

The expenditure on maintenance of the wife (during ‘Iddah) shall be payable from the income and assets of the husband; while that of the children shall be payable from the income and assets of the husband or wife or both, or even from their pension. The court shall determine the amount which should be defrayed for each child from the income or assets of the husband or wife, or both, and shall order a satisfactory arrangement for payment thereof.

Likewise, the court shall also determine the arrangement for the parties to meet the children. In case of absence or demise of the father or mother, the right of meeting the child (or children) shall be transferred to the near relatives of the first degree of the absent or deceased person.

The provisions of this Act shall also apply to the children whose parents have been separated from each other before the enactment of this Act, provided no satisfactory arrangement had been made for their custody and protection.

Section 13. In every case when the court, in accordance with the notice by either of the parents or any near relatives of the children or the Divisional (Sharistãn) Public Prosecutor, decides that it is expedient to revise the arrangement for the custody of the children, it shall revise its earlier decision. In such cases the court may transfer the custody of the child (or children) to any person it deems suitable. In any case, the expenditure in respect of the custody shall be borne by the person who has been held responsible for it according to the decision of the court.

Section 14. When a man, already having a wife, desires to marry another women, he shall obtain permission from the court of law. The court shall give the permission only when it has taken the necessary steps, and, if possible, has made an inquiry from the present wife of the man, in order to assure the financial potentiality and (physical) ability of the man for doing justice (to both the wives).

In case the man marries (another woman) without obtaining the due permission from the court, he shall be liable for the punishment provided in section 5 of the Marriage Act of 1310-1316[iii] (A.H. – 1931-1937 A.D.).

Section 15. A husband may, with the approval of the court, prevent his wife from an occupation which is repugnant to the interests of his or her family or position.

Section 16. The decision of the court shall be final in the following cases:

  1. Issue of a non-reconciliation certificate;
  2. Determination of the (amount of) maintenance for the ‘Iddah period (payable by the husband to the wife), and the expenditure in respect of the custody of the children;
  3. Custody of the children;
  4. Right of the father or mother or the near relatives of first degree of the absent or deceased father or mother or children for meeting the children; and
  5. Permission provided in section 14 above.

Section 17. The provisions contained in section 11 shall be noted in the Marriage Contract Form as “Conditions appended to the Contract”. Here (among others), the fact relating to the delegation of an irrevocable power of attorney to the wife for divorcing herself (on behalf of the husband) shall also be explicitly mentioned.

In accordance with the provisions of the Civil Code,[iv] this divorce shall be irrevocable.

Section 18. A husband or wife, or both, may make an application to the court for the immediate consideration of the question of custody of their children, the existing position (of the children), or the expenditure in respect of their custody, and for issuing an order in this connection before entering into the consideration of their actual dispute.

On receipt of the application, the court shall take up its consideration (immediately). The temporary order issued by the court concerning the custody or expenditure (on the custody) of the children shall be final, and shall be enforceable with immediate effect.

Section 19. After the enactment of this Act, the Superintendents of the Divorce (Registration) Offices shall, unless a certificate of non-reconciliation or an order of the court is produced, not take any action for the pronouncement of the Sîghah (or prescribed words) of divorce, or the registration of the divorce (as the case may be).

Whosoever contravenes the provisions of this section shall be liable to a disciplinary punishment of the fourth degree, or above.

Note.- A non-reconciliation certificate is valid for three months from the date of its issue.

Section 20. While considering matters relating to family (disputes), the proceedings of the court shall be held in camerâ.

Section 21. The enforcement of the judgments of the court shall be governed by the General Provisions (of the Civil Procedure Code).

Section 22. The Rules for carrying into effect the purposes of this Act shall be formulated by the Ministry of Justice within a period of three months from the date of the passage of this Act, and enforced after approval by the Council of Ministers.

Section 23. The government shall be responsible for the enforcement of this Act.

RULES FOR CARRYING INTO EFFECT THE FAMILY PROTECTION ACT

Section 1. In order to carry into effect the Family Protection Act the Ministry of Justice shall charge one or several branches of the Divisional (or Sharistãn) Court in every Division (or Sharistãn) with the duty of entertaining the civil disputes arising from matrimonial relations of family litigations. If necessary, special benches may be set up in the Divisional (or Sharistãn) Courts for this purpose. The judges appointed for the special courts for entertaining the family disputes should possess suitable qualifications of age, experience and family position for fulfilling such duties.

Section 2. A suit relating to family disputes may be filed verbally or by submitting an application in writing. The application need not be on a printed form.

Section 3. In every case when a suit is filed verbally, the statement of the plaintiff shall be written in the procés-verbal by the copy-writer or the office superintendent (or Reader) of the court, and duly (signed and) endorsed by the plaintiff, and the court shall issue an order for entertaining the application.

Section 4. The court fee in respect of the suit shall be charged to the plaintiff at the time of submission of the application, except when the plaintiff is known as destitute by the court, in which case he or she shall be exempted from the payment of the relevant fees.

Section 5. After the suit has been filed, the court shall, in any manner it deems fit, call both the parties (to be present), within the specified due time and shall also communicate the contents of the (plaintiff’s) application and its appendices to the defendant.

In case either of the parties, or both, fail to appear in the court, it shall not preclude the court from taking necessary action and decision on the (plaintiff’s) application.
Section 6. In a case where the dispute is referred for arbitration, the court shall ask each of the parties to nominate his or her arbitrator or arbitrators and in case either or both of the parties fail to appear or do not nominate their arbitrator (arbitrators), the court shall itself appoint an arbitrator or arbitrators from among his or her near relatives or persons having a close contact or friendship with him or her, or any other person.

Section 7. In case an arbitrator, or arbitrators, refuse to accept the duty of arbitration, or resign (after once accepting it), the court shall take necessary action for the appointment of a fresh arbitrator, or arbitrators, and in case the new arbitrator, or arbitrators, are also unwilling to accept the duty or (after once accepting it) resign, the court shall directly take up the matter.

Section 8. In case several persons have been appointed as arbitrators, and one of them resigns in the second half of the term of arbitration, his or her resignation shall have no effect on the proceeding, the arbitrator being considered as absentee, and the matter shall be determined by majority of votes.

Section 9. At any stage of the proceedings, whenever the parties agree to the verdict of t he arbitrator (or arbitrators), and communicate their mutual agreement to the court, the court shall take direct action and give its judgment.

Section 10. The specimen form of the non-reconciliation certificate shall be prepared by the Ministry of Justice and supplied to the courts.

The pronouncement of the Sîghah (or the prescribed words) of divorce shall be performed after the issue of the non-reconciliation certificate in accordance with (the provisions of) the Civil Code.

Section 11. Addiction to a harmful thing means addiction to any of the narcotic drugs, alcoholic drinks, gambling or the like, which if constantly practiced by a person, is apprehended to cause a damage or a hygienic, material or moral harm to the addicted person or his or her spouse.

Section 12. The amount of maintenance (of the divorced wife) or expenditure on the custody or education of the children shall be determined or assessed in consideration of their present and future requirements as well as the position and circumstances of the parents. In case it is difficult to meet the expenditure, firstly, from the income (and assets) of the father alone, or, secondly, from the income (and assets) of the mother alone, it shall be defrayed from the income (and assets) of both parents.

Section 13. The parents shall have the right to meet their children at least once a month.

Section 14. An employer, whether de jure or de facto, may dispense with the services of a woman only when a court of law has already considered the application of her husband to the effect that the present occupation of the wife is repugnant to the interests and position of the family, and given a judgment in favor of the husband.

Section 15. All Superintendents of the Marriage and Divorce (Registration) Officers shall, before registering a marriage, or calling the parties (for its registration), ask for the preparation of a detailed inventory of the dowry of the wife which shall be signed and endorsed by the husband.

——————————————————————————–

NOTES

(Translations of the relevant extracts of some of the laws referred to, are given below).

[i] In the case of a dispute between a husband and wife over misbehaviour, failure (on the part of the wife) to surrender herself to the embraces of the husband, the maintenance, clothing and residence (of the wife) or expenditure payable by the husband for a child under the custody of the wife, when a suit is filed by either of the spouses, the court may refer the plaint to arbitration.

In case of disagreement between the parties over the appointment of an arbitrator, the court shall appoint (as arbitrators) two persons, from among the near relatives of (each of) the parties, and when they have no near relatives at the place of their residence, from among the persons having a close contact or friendship with them.

The arbitrators shall make all possible endeavour to bring about a reconciliation between the parties. In case of their failure in bringing about a compromise, they shall give their opinion as to which of the parties is on the right, or in respect of the amount of expenditure on (the maintenance of) the wife or (on the custody of) the child (or children), where the dispute is in respect of the expenditure (on the maintenance of) the wife (or the custody of the child or children).

In the case of disagreement between the arbitrators, they may, by mutual agreement, nominate a person as the third arbitrator. In case, however, they disagree on the appointment of the third arbitrator, the court shall appoint one by lot. Thereupon, the matter shall be decided by majority of votes of the arbitrators. At the time of the appointment of the arbitrators, the court shall take into consideration that the persons appointed as arbitrators bear a good moral character.

In case either of the parties has an objection against the verdict of the (arbitrator, or) arbitrators, he or she shall submit to the court his or her objection within one month of the receipt of the notice of the verdict. If in the opinion of the court the objection is reasonable, the court shall consider the matter and give its (own) judgment.

A suit in respect of the aforesaid cases shall be filed in the Divisional (Sharistãn) court in the District (Bakhsh) court. (The Civil Procedure Code of Iran, § 676).

The parties to a contract of marriage may (by mutual agreement) provide any stipulation as appended to the contracts of marriage or to any other binding contract, provided the stipulation is not contrary to the very purpose of the contract. They may stipulate, for example, that whenever the husband has been missing, has failed to maintain his wife for a specified period, has made an attempt on her life, or maltreats her in a way that renders (the continuation of) the marital life intolerable (for her), the wife shall, after the establishment of the cause in a court of law and the issue of a final judgment (by the court), be authorized to divorce herself irrevocably (on behalf of the husband) or to delegate such authority to some other person.

Note. All the cases of dispute between a husband and wife falling under this section shall be tried by the courts of first instance in accordance with the Civil Procedure Code. The judgment of the aforementioned courts shall be appealable and revisable. A person may file a suit within six months of the occurrence of the cause (stipulated for), after which the stipulation shall be considered as time-barred.

(The Marriage Act of Iran, § 4).

[iii] A husband or wife who, at the time of contracting a marriage, defrauds the other party in a way that in the absence of that fraud the marriage could not have been contracted, shall be liable to a correctional imprisonment for (a period ranging form) six months to two years. (Ibid.. § 5)
[iv] In fact, according to the provisions of section 4 of the Marriage Act of Iran (quoted above), the wife is already authorized to divorce herself irrevocably, provided the stipulation to this effect had been made in the contract of marriage. It seems that the present act intends to include such cases of divorce among the cases provided under section 1145 of the Civil Code of Iran which reads as follows:

Section 1145. A divorce shall be irrevocable in the following cases:

  1. When it is given before the consummation of marriage.
  2. When it is given to a yã’isah (i.e., a woman who has passed the child bearing age).
  3. When it is a khul’ divorce (i.e., one given on the demand of the wife) or a mubãrãt divorce (i.e., one given on the mutual agreement of the parties), as long as the woman does not demand the return of the compensation (paid to the husband for obtaining such divorce from him).
  4. When it is a third divorce given (by the same husband to the same wife) after three consecutive matrimonial connections, no matter whether the matrimonial connections have been the result of a recall (of the wife by the husband before the expiry of the ‘Iddah) or a fresh contract of marriage.

Section 7 of the Iranian Penal Code has divided an offence into the following four kinds (or degrees) according to the severity or mildness of the act:

  1. A crime;
  2. A big offense;
  3. A minor offense; and
  4. A contravention.

Further, Section 11 of the Iranian Penal Code provides the following punishment for a contravention (i.e., an offense of the fourth degree):

  1. An imprisonment for a period of two to ten days.
  2. A fine up to two hundred rials.

THE CONSTITUTION OF IRAN

{ Adopted on: 24 Oct 1979 }
{ Effective since: 3 Dec 1979 }
{ Amended on: 28 July 1989 }
{ ICL Document Status: 1992 }

 

{ Editor’s Note
The original raw text is based on a translation provided by the Iranian embassy in London. The text has been extensively changed in 1994 and 1995 to adapt it to ICL standards. }

PreambleLong_Preamble
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran advances the cultural, social, political, and economic institutions of Iranian society based on Islamic principles and norms, which represent an honest aspiration of the Islamic Ummah.11  This aspiration was exemplified by the nature of the great Islamic Revolution of Iran, and by the course of the Muslim people’s struggle, from its beginning until victory, as reflected in the decisive and forceful calls raised by all segments of the populations.  Now, at the threshold of this great victory, our nation, with all its beings, seeks its fulfillment.112
The basic characteristic of this revolution, which distinguishes it from other movements that have taken place in Iran during the past hundred years, is its ideological and Islamic nature.  After experiencing the anti-despotic constitutional movement and the anti-colonialist movement centered on the nationalization of the oil industry, the Muslim people of Iran learned from this costly experience that the obvious and fundamental reason for the failure of those movements was their lack of an ideological basis.  Although the Islamic line of thought and the direction provided by militant religious leaders played an essential role in the recent movements, nonetheless, the struggles waged in the course of those movements quickly fell into stagnation due to departure from genuine Islamic positions.  Thus it was that the awakened conscience of the nation, under the leadership of Imam Khumayni, came to perceive the necessity of pursuing a genuinely Islamic and ideological line in its struggles.  And this time, the militant ‘ulama’ of the country, who had always been in the forefront of popular movements, together with the committed writers and intellectuals, found new impetus by following his leadership.

The Dawn of the Movement
The devastating protest of Imam Khumayni against the American conspiracy known as the “White Revolution,” which was a step intended to stabilize the foundations of despotic rule and to reinforce the political, cultural, and economic dependence of Iran on world imperialism, brought into being a united movement of the people and, immediately afterwards, a momentous revolution of the Muslim nation in June 1963.  Although this revolution was drowned in blood, in reality it heralded the beginning of the blossoming of a glorious and massive uprising, which confirmed the central role of Imam Khumayni as an Islamic leader.  Despite his exile from Iran after his protest against the humiliating law of capitulation (which provided legal immunity for American advisers), the firm bond between the Imam and the people endured, and the Muslim nation, particularly committed intellectuals and militant ‘ulama’, continued their struggle in the face of banishment and imprisonment, torture and execution.
Throughout this time, the conscious and responsible segment ofsociety was bringing enlightenment to the people from the strongholds of the mosques, centers of religious teaching, and universities.  Drawing inspiration from the revolutionary and fertile teachings of Islam, they began the unrelenting yet fruitful struggle of raising the level of ideological awareness and revolutionary consciousness of the Muslim people.  The despotic regime which had begun the suppression of the Islamic movement with barbaric attacks on the Faydiyyah Madrasah, Tehran University, and all other active centers of revolution, in an effort to evade the revolutionary anger of the people, resorted to the most savage and brutal measures.  And in these circumstances, execution by firing squads, endurance of medieval tortures, and long terms of imprisonment were the price our Muslim nation had to pay to prove its firm resolve to continue the struggle.  The Islamic Revolution of Iran was nurtured by the blood of hundreds of young men and women, infused with faith, who raised their cries of “Allahu Akbar” at daybreak in execution yards, or were gunned down by the enemy in streets and marketplaces.  Meanwhile, the continuing declarations and messages of the Imam that were issued on various occasions, extended and deepened the consciousness and determination of the Muslim nation to the utmost.

Islamic Government
The plan of the Islamic government as proposed by Imam Khumayni at the height of the period of repression and strangulation practiced by the despotic regime, produced a new specific, and streamline  motive for the Muslim people, opening up before them the true path of Islamic ideological struggle, and giving greater intensity to the struggle of militant and committed Muslims both within the country and abroad.
The movement continued on this course until finally popular dissatisfaction and intense rage of the public caused by the constantly increasing repression at home, and the projection of the struggle at the international level after exposure of the regime by the ‘ulama’ and militant students, shook the foundations of the regime violently.  The regime and its sponsors were compelled to decrease the intensity of repression and to “liberalize” the political atmosphere of the country.  This, they imagined, would serve as a safety valve, which would prevent their eventual downfall.  But the people, aroused, conscious, and resolute under the decisive and unfaltering leadership of the Imam, embarked on a triumphant, unified, comprehensive, and countrywide uprising.

The Wrath of the People
The publication of an outrageous article meant to malign the revered ‘ulama’ and in particular Imam Khumayni on 7 Jan 1978 by the ruling regime accelerated the revolutionary movement and caused an outburst of popular outrage across the country.  The regime attempted to quiet the heat of the people’s anger by drowning the protest and uprising in blood, but the bloodshed only quickened the pulse rate of the Revolution.  The seventh-day and fortieth-day commemorations of the martyrs of the Revolution, like a series of steady heartbeats, gave greater vitality, intensity, vigor, and solidarity to this movement all over the country.  In the course of this popular movement, the employees of all government establishments took an active part in the effort to overthrow the tyrannical regime by calling a general strike and participating in street demonstrations.  The widespread solidarity of men and women of all segments of society and of all political and religious factions, played a clearly determining role in the struggle.  Especially the women were actively and massively present in a most conspicuous manner at all stages of this great struggle.  The common sightof mothers with infants in their arms rushing towards the scene of battle and in front of the barrels of machine-guns indicated the essential and decisive role played by this major segment of society in the struggle.

The Price the Nation Paid
After slightly more than a year of continuous and unrelenting struggle, the sapling of the  evolution, watered by the blood of more than 60,000 martyrs and 100,000 wounded and disabled, not to mention property damage, came to bear fruit amidst the cries of “Independence! Freedom! Islamic government!”  This great movement, which attained victory through reliance upon faith, unity, and the decisiveness of its leadership at every critical and sensitive juncture, as well as the self-sacrificing spirit of the people, succeeded in upsetting all the calculations of imperialism and destroying all its connections and institutions, thereby opening a new chapter in the history of all-embracing popular revolutions of the world.
On 12 and 13 Feb 1979, the world witnessed the collapse of the monarchical regime.  Domestic tyranny and foreign domination, both of which were based upon it, were shattered.  This great success proved to be the vanguard of Islamic government — a long-cherished desire of the Muslim people — and brought with it the glad tidings of final victory.
Unanimously, the Iranian people declared their final and firm decision, in the referendum on the Islamic Republic, to bring about a new political system, that of the Islamic Republic.  A majority of 98.2% of the people voted for this system.  The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, setting forth as it does the political, social, cultural, and economic institutions and their relations that are to exist in society, must now provide for the consolidation of the foundations of Islamic government, and propose the plan of a new system of government to be erected on the ruins of the previous order.

The Form of Government in Islam
In the view of Islam, government does not derive from the interests of a class, nor does it serve the domination of an individual or a group.  Rather, it represents the fulfillment of the political ideal of a people who bear a common faith and common outlook, taking an organized form in order to initiate the process of intellectual and ideological evolution towards the final goal, i.e., movement towards Allah.  Our nation, in the course of its revolutionary developments, has cleansed itself of the dust and impurities that accumulated during the past and purged itself of foreign ideological influences, returning to authentic intellectual standpoints and world-view of Islam.  It now intends to establish an ideal and model society on the basis of Islamic norms.  The mission of the Constitution is to realize the ideological objectives of the movement and to create conditions conducive to the development of man in accordance with the noble and universal values of Islam.
With due attention to the Islamic content of the Iranian Revolution, the Constitution provides the necessary basis for ensuring the continuation of the Revolution at home and abroad.  In particular, in the development of international relations, the Constitution will strive with other Islamic and popular movements to prepare the way for the formation of a single world community (in accordance with the Koranic verse “This your community is a single community, and I am your Lord, so worship Me” [21:92]), and to assure the continuation of the struggle for the liberation of all deprived and oppressed peoples in the world.
With due attention to the essential character of this great movement, the Constitution guarantees the rejection of all forms of intellectual and social tyranny and economic monopoly, and aims at entrusting the destinies of the people to the people themselves in order to break completely with the system of oppression. (This is in accordance with the Koranic verse “He removes from them their burdens an  the fetters that were upon them” [7:157]).
In creating, on the basis of ideological outlook, the political infrastructures and institutions that are the foundation of society, the righteous will assume the responsibility of governing and adMinistering the country (in accordance with the Koranic verse “Verily My righteous servants shall inherit the earth”[21:105]).  Legislation setting forth regulations for the administration of society will revolve around the Koran and the Sunnah.  Accordingly, the exercise of meticulous and earnest supervision by just, pious, and committed scholars of Islam is an absolute necessity.  In addition, the aim of government is to foster the growth of man in such a way that he progresses towards the establishment of a Divine order (in accordance with the Koranic phrase “And toward God is the journeying” [3 28]); and to create favorable conditions for the emergence and blossoming of man’s innate capacities, so that the theomorphic dimensions of the human being are manifested (in accordance with the injunction of the Prophet (S) “Mould yourselves according to the Divine morality”); this goal cannot be attained without the active and broad participation of all segments of society in the process of social development.
With due attention to this goal, the Constitution provides the basis of such participation by all members of society at all stages of the political decision-making process on which the destiny of the country depends.  In this way during the course of human development towards perfection, each individual will himself be involved in, and responsible for the growth, advancement, and leadership of society. Precisely in this lies the realization of the holy government upon earth (in accordance with the Koranic verse “And we wish to show favor to those who have been oppressed upon earth, and to make them leaders and the inheritors.”[28:5]).
The Principles of Governance of the Just Holy Person
In keeping with the principles of governance and the perpetual necessity of leadership, the Constitution provides for the establishment of leadership by a holy person possessing the necessary qualifications and recognized as leader by the people (this is in accordance with the saying “The direction of affairs is in the hands of those who are learned concerning God and are trustworthy in matters pertaining to what He permits and forbids”).  Such leadership will prevent any deviation by the various organs of State from their essential Islamic duties.

The Economy is a Means, Not an End
In strengthening the foundations of the economy, the fundamental consideration will be fulfillment of the material needs of man in the course of his overall growth and development.  This principle contrasts with other economic systems, where the aim is concentration and accumulation of wealth and maximization of profit.  In materialist schools of thought, the economy represents an end in itself, so that it comes to be a subversive and corrupting factor in the course of man’s development.  In Islam, the economy is a means, and all that is required of a means is that it should be an efficient factor contributing to the attainment of the ultimate goal.
From this viewpoint, the economic program of Islam consists of providing the means needed for the emergence of the various creative capacities of the human being.  Accordingly, it is the duty of the Islamic government to furnish all citizens with equal and appropriate opportunities, to provide them with work, and to satisfy their essential needs, so that the course of their progress may be assured.

Woman in the Constitution
Through the creation of Islamic social infrastructures, all the elements of humanity that served the multifaceted foreign exploitation shall regain their true identity and human rights.  As a part of this process, it is only natural that women should benefit from a particularly large augmentation of their rights, because of the greater oppression that they suffered under the old regime.
The family is the fundamental unit of society and the main center for the growth and edification of human being.  Compatibility with respect to belief and ideal, which provides the primary basis for man’s development and growth, is the main consideration in the establishment of a family.  It is the duty of the Islamic government to provide the necessary facilities for the attainment of this goal.  This view of the family unit delivers woman from being regarded as an object or instrument in the service of promoting consumerism and exploitation.  Not only does woman recover thereby her momentous and precious function of motherhood, rearing of ideologically committed human beings, she also assumes a pioneering social role and becomes the fellow struggler of man in all vital areas of life.  Given the weighty responsibilities that woman thus assumes, she is accorded in Islam great value and nobility.

An Ideological Army
In the formation and equipping of the country’s defence forces, due attention must be paid to faith and ideology as the basic criteria.  Accordingly, the Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps are to be organized in conformity with this goal, and they will be responsible not only for guarding and preserving the frontiers of the country, but also for fulfilling the ideological mission of jihad in God’s way; that is, extending the sovereignty of God’s law throughout the world (this is in accordance with the Koranic verse “Prepare against them whatever force you are able to muster, and strings of horses, striking fear into the enemy of God and your enemy, and others besides them” [8:60]).

The Judiciary in the Constitution
The judiciary is of vital importance in the context of safeguarding the rights of the people in accordance with the line followed by the Islamic movement, and the prevention of deviations within the Islamic nation.  Provision has therefore been made for the creation of a judicial system based on Islamic justice and operated by just judges with meticulous knowledge of the Islamic laws.  This system, because of its essentially sensitive nature and the need for full ideological conformity, must be free from every kind of unhealthy relation and connection (this is in accordance with the Koranic verse “When you judge among the people, judge with justice” [4:58]).

Executive Power
Considering the particular importance of the executive power in implementing the laws and ordinances of Islam for the sake of establishing the rule of just relations over society, and considering, too, its vital role in paving the way for theattainment of the ultimate goal of life, the executive power must work toward the creation of an Islamic society.  Consequently, the confinement of the executive power within any kind of complex and inhibiting system that delays or impedes the attainment of this goal is rejected by Islam.  Therefore, the system of bureaucracy, the result and product of old forms of government, will be firmly cast away, so that an executive system that functions efficiently and swiftly in the fulfillment of its administrative commitments comes into existence.

Mass-Communication Media
The mass-communication media, radio and television, must serve the diffusion of Islamic culture in pursuit of the evolutionary course of the Islamic Revolution.  To this end, the media should be used as a forum for healthy encounter of different ideas, but they must strictly refrain from diffusion and propagation of destructive and anti-Islamic practices.
It is incumbent on all to adhere to the principles of this Constitution, for it regards as its highest aim the freedom and dignity of the human race and provides for the growth and development of the human being.  It is also necessary that the Muslim people should participate actively in the construction of Islamic society by selecting competent and believing officials and keeping close and constant watch on their performance.  They may then hope for success in building an ideal Islamic society that can be a model for all people of the world and a witness to its perfection (in accordance with the Koranic verse “Thus We made you a median community, that you might be witnesses to men” [2:143]).

Representatives
The Assembly of Experts, composed of representatives of the people, completed its task of framing the Constitution, on the basis of the draft proposed by the government as well as all the proposals received from different groups of the people, in one hundred and seventy-five articles arranged in twelve chapters, in 1979, and in accordance with the aims and aspirations set out above, with the hope that this century will witness the establishment of a universal holy government and the downfall of all others.

Chapter I  General Principles

Article 1  [Form of Government]
The form of government of Iran is that of an Islamic Republic, endorsed by the people of Iran on the basis of their longstanding belief in the sovereignty of truth and Koranic justice, in the referendum of 29 and 30 March 1979, through the affirmative vote of a majority of 98.2% of eligible voters, held after the victorious Islamic Revolution led by Imam Khumayni.

Article 2  [Foundational Principles]
The Islamic Republic is a system based on belief in:
1) the One God (as stated in the phrase “There is no god except Allah”), His exclusive sovereignty and right to legislate, and the necessity of submission to His commands;
2) Divine revelation and its fundamental role in setting forth the laws;
3) the return to God in the Hereafter, and the constructive role of this belief in the course of man’s ascent towards God;
4) the justice of God in creation and legislation;
5) continuous leadership and perpetual guidance, and its fundamental role in ensuring the uninterrupted process of the revolution of Islam;
6) the exalted dignity and value of man, and his freedom coupled with responsibility before God; in which equity, justice, political, economic, social, and cultural independence, and national solidarity are secured by recourse to:
a) continuous leadership of the holy persons, possessing necessary qualifications, exercised on the basis of the Koran and the Sunnah, upon all of whom be peace;
b) sciences and arts and the most advanced results of human experience, together with the effort to advance them further;
c) negation of all forms of oppression, both the infliction of and the submission to it, and of dominance, both its imposition and its acceptance.

Article 3  [State Goals]
In order to attain the objectives specified in Article 2, the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has the duty of directing all its resources to the following goals:
1) the creation of a favorable environment for the growth of moral virtues based on faith and piety and the struggle against all forms of vice and corruption;
2) raising the level of public awareness in all areas, through the proper use of the press, mass media, and other means;
3) free education and physical training for everyone at all levels, and the facilitation and expansion of higher education;
4) strengthening the spirit of inquiry, investigation, and innovation in all areas of science, technology, and culture, as well as Islamic studies, by establishing research centers and encouraging researchers;
5) the complete elimination of imperialism and the prevention of foreign influence;
6) the elimination of all forms of despotism and autocracy and all attempts to monopolize power;
7) ensuring political and social freedoms within the framework of the law;
8) the participation of the entire people in determining their political, economic, social, and cultural destiny;
9) the abolition of all forms of undesirable discrimination and the provision of equitable opportunities for all, in both the material and the intellectual spheres;
10) the creation of a correct administrative system and elimination of superfluous government organizations;
11) all round strengthening of the foundations of national defence to the utmost degree by means of universal military training for the sake of safeguarding the independence, territorial integrity, and the Islamic order of the country;
12) the planning of a correct and just economic system, in accordance with Islamic criteria, in order to create welfare, eliminate poverty, and abolish all forms of deprivation with respect to food, housing, work, health care, and the provision of social insurance for all;
13) the attainment of self-sufficiency in scientific, technological, industrial, agricultural, and military domains, and other similar spheres;
14) securing the multifarious rights of all citizens, both women and men, and providing legal protection for all, as well as the equality63 of all before the law;
15) the expansion and strengthening of Islamic brotherhood and public cooperation among all the people;
16) framing the foreign policy of the country on the basis of Islamic criteria, fraternal commitment to all Muslims, and unsparing support to the freedom fighters of the world.

Article 4  [Islamic Principle]
All civil, penal financial, economic, administrative, cultural, military, political, and other laws and regulations must be based on Islamic criteria.  This principle applies absolutely and generallyto all articles of the Constitution as well as to all other laws and regulations, and the wise persons of the Guardian Council are judges in this matter.

Article 5  [Office of Religious Leader]
During the occultation of the Wali al-‘Asr (may God hasten his reappearance), the leadership of the Ummah devolve upon the just and pious person, who is fully aware of the circumstances of his age, courageous, resourceful, and possessed of administrative ability, will assume the responsibilities of this office in accordance with Article 107.

Article 6  [Administration of Affairs]
In the Islamic Republic of Iran, the affairs of the country must be administered on the basis of public opinion expressed by the means of elections, including the election of the President, the representatives of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, and the members of councils, or by means of referenda in matters specified in other articles of this Constitution.

Article 7  [Consultative Bodies]
(1) In accordance with the command of the Koran contained in the verse “Their affairs are by consultations among them” [42:38] and “Consult them in affairs” [3:159], consultative bodies — such as the Islamic Consultative Assembly, the Provincial Councils, and the City, Region, District, and Village Councils and the likes of them — are the decision-making and administrative organs of the country.
(2) The nature each of these councils, together with the manner of their formation, their jurisdiction, and scope of their duties and functions, is determined by the Constitution and laws derived from it.

Article 8  [Community Principle]
In the Islamic Republic of Iran, “al-‘amr bilma’ruf wa al-nahy ‘an al-munkar” is a universal and reciprocal duty that must be fulfilled by the people with respect to one another, by the government with respect to the people, and by the people with respect to the government.  The conditions, limits, and nature of this duty will be specified by law. (This is in accordance with the Koranic verse “The believers, men and women, are guardians of one another; they enjoin the good and forbid the evil.” [9:71])

Article 9  [Independence Principle]
In the Islamic Republic of Iran, the freedom, independence, unity, and territorial integrity of the country are inseparable from one another, and their preservation is the duty of the government and all individual citizens.  No individual, group, or authority, has the right to infringe in the slightest way upon the political, cultural, economic, and military independence or the territorial integrity of Iran under the pretext of exercising freedom.  Similarly, no authority has the right to abrogate legitimate freedoms, not even by enacting laws and regulations for that purpose, under the pretext of preserving the independence and territorial integrity of the country.

Article 10  [Family Principle]
Since the family is the fundamental unit of Islamic society, all laws, regulations, and pertinent programs must tend to facilitate the formation of a family, and to safeguard its sanctity and the stability of family relations on the basis of the law and the ethics of Islam.

Article 11  [Unity of Islam Principle]
In accordance with the sacred verse of the Koran “This yourcommunity is a single community, and I am your Lord, so worship Me” [21:92], all Muslims form a single nation, and the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran have the duty of formulating its general policies with a view to cultivating the friendship and unity of all Muslim peoples, and it must constantly strive to bring about the political, economic, and cultural unity of the Islamic world.

Article 12  [Official Religion]
The official religion of Iran is Islam and the Twelver Ja’fari school, and this principle will remain eternally immutable.  Other Islamic schools are to be accorded full respect, and their followers are free to act in accordance with their own jurisprudence in performing their religious rites.  These schools enjoy official status in matters pertaining to religious education, affairs of personal status (marriage, divorce, inheritance, and wills) and related litigation in courts of law.  In regions of the country where Muslims following any one of these schools constitute the majority, local regulations, within the bounds of the jurisdiction of local councils, are to be in accordance with the respective school, without infringing upon the rights of the followers of other schools.

Article 13  [Recognized Religious Minorities]
Zoroastrian, Jewish, and Christian Iranians are the only recognized religious minorities, who, within the limits of the law, are free to perform their religious rites and ceremonies, and to act according to their own canon in matters of personal affairs and religious education.

Article 14  [Non-Muslims’ Rights]
In accordance with the sacred verse “God does not forbid you to deal kindly and justly with those who have not fought against you because of your religion and who have not expelled you from your homes” [60:8], the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and all Muslims are duty-bound to treat non-Muslims in conformity with ethical norms and the principles of Islamic justice and equity, and to respect their human rights.  This principle applies to all who refrain from engaging in conspiracy or activity against Islam and the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Chapter II  The Official Language, Script, Calendar, and Flag of the Country

Article 15  [Official Language]
The Official Language and script of Iran, the lingua franca of its people, is Persian.  Official documents, correspondence, and texts, as well as text-books, must be in this language and script.  However, the use of regional and tribal languages in the press and mass media, as well as for teaching of their literature in schools, is allowed in addition to Persian.

Article 16  [Arabic Language]
Since the language of the Koran and Islamic texts and teachings is Arabic, and since Persian literature is thoroughly permeated by this language, it must be taught after elementary level, in all classes of secondary school and in all areas of study.

Article 17  [Official Calendar]
The Official Calendar of the country takes as its point of departure the migration of the Prophet of Islam — God’s peace and blessings upon him and his Family.  Both the solar and lunar Islamic calendars are recognized, but government offices will function according to the solar calendar.  The official weekly holiday is Friday.

Article 18  [Official Flag]
The Official Flag of Iran is composed of green, white, and red colors, with the special emblem of the Islamic Republic, together with the State Motto.

Chapter III  The Rights of the People

Article 19  [No Discrimination, No Privileges]
All people of Iran, whatever the ethnic group or tribe to which they belong, enjoy equal rights; color, race, language, and the like, do not bestow any privilege.

Article 20  [Equality Before Law]
All citizens of the country, both men and women, equally enjoy the protection of the law and enjoy all human, political, economic, social, and cultural rights, in conformity with Islamic criteria.

Article 21  [Women’s Rights]
The government must ensure the rights of women in all respects, in conformity with Islamic criteria, and accomplish the following goals:
1) create a favorable environment for the growth of woman’s personality and the restoration of her rights, both the material and intellectual;
2) the protection of mothers, particularly during pregnancy and child-rearing, and the protection of children without guardians;
3) establishing competent courts to protect and preserve the family;
4) the provision of special insurance for widows, aged women, and women without support;
5) the awarding of guardianship of children to worthy mothers, in order to protect the interests of the children, in the absence of a legal guardian.

Article 22  [Human Dignity and Rights]
The dignity6111, life, property622, rights, residence, and occupation of the individual are inviolate, except in cases sanctioned by law.

Article 23  [Freedom of Belief]
The investigation of individuals’ beliefs is forbidden, and no one may be molested or taken to task simply for holding a certain belief.623

Article 24  [Freedom of the Press]
Publications and the press have freedom of expression6242 except when it is detrimental to the fundamental principles of Islam or the rights of the public.  The details of this exception will be specified by law.

Article 25  [Secrecy of Communication]
The inspection of letters and the failure to deliver them, the recording and disclosure of telephone conversations, the disclosure of telegraphic and telex communications, censorship, or the wilful failure to transmit them, eavesdropping, and all forms of covert investigation are forbidden, except as provided by law.

Article 26  [Freedom of Association]
The formation of parties, societies, political or professional associations, as well as religious societies, whether Islamic or pertaining to one of the recognized religious minorities, is permitted provided they do not violate the principles of independence, freedom, national unity, the criteria of Islam, or the basis of the Islamic Republic.  No one may be preventedfrom participating in the aforementioned groups, or be compelled to participate in them.

Article 27  [Freedom of Assembly]
Public gatherings and marches may be freely held, provided arms are not carried and that they are not detrimental to the fundamental principles of Islam.

Article 28  [Work]
(1) Everyone has the right to choose any occupation he wishes, if it is not contrary to Islam and the public interests, and does not infringe the rights of others.
(2) The government has the duty, with due consideration of the need of society for different kinds of work, to provide every citizen with the opportunity to work, and to create equal conditions for obtaining it.

Article 29  [Welfare Rights]
(1) To benefit from social security with respect to retirement, unemployment, old age, disability, absence of a guardian, and benefits relating to being stranded, accidents, health services, and medical care and treatment, provided through insurance or other means, is accepted as a universal right.
(2) The government must provide the foregoing services and financial support for every individual citizen by drawing, in accordance with the law, on the national revenues and funds obtained through public contributions.

Article 30  [Education]
The government must provide all citizen with free education up to secondary school, and must expand free higher education to the extent required by the country for attaining self-sufficiency.

Article 31  [Housing]
It is the right of every Iranian individual and family to possess housing commensurate with his needs.  The government must make land available for the implementation of this article, according priority to those whose need is greatest, in particular the rural population and the workers.

Article 32  [Arrest]
No one may be arrested except by the order and in accordance with the procedure laid down by law.  In case of arrest, charges with the reasons for accusation must, without delay, be communicated and explained to the accused in writing, and a provisional dossier must be forwarded to the competent judicial authorities within a maximum of twenty-four hours so that the preliminaries to the trial can be completed as swiftly as possible.  The violation of this article will be liable to punishment in accordance with the law.

Article 33  [Residence]
No one can be banished from his place of residence, prevented from residing in the place of his choice, or compelled to reside in a given locality, except in cases provided by law.

Article 34  [Recourse to the Courts]
It is the indisputable right of every citizen to seek justice by recourse to competent courts.  All citizens have right of access to such courts, and no one can be barred from courts to which he has a legal right of recourse.

Article 35  [Right to Counsel]
Both parties to a lawsuit have the right in all courts of law to select an attorney, and if they are unable to do so, arrangements must be made to provide them with legal counsel.

Article 36  [Sentencing]
The passing and execution of a sentence must be only by a competent court and in accordance with law.

Article 37  [Presumption of Innocense]
Innocence is to be presumed, and no one is to be held guilty of a charge unless his or her guilt has been established by a competent court.

Article 38  [Torture]
All forms of torture for the purpose of extracting confession or acquiring information are forbidden.  Compulsion of individuals to testify, confess, or take an oath is not permissible; and any testimony, confession, or oath obtained under duress is devoid of value and credence.  Violation of this article is liable to punishment in accordance with the law.

Article 39  [Dignity of Arrested]
All affronts to the dignity and repute of persons arrested, detained, imprisoned, or banished in accordance with the law, whatever form they may take, are forbidden and liable to punishment.

Article 40  [Public Interest]
No one is entitled to exercise his rights in a way injurious to others or detrimental to public interests.

Article 41  [Citizenship]
Iranian citizenship is the indisputable right of every Iranian, and the government cannot withdraw citizenship from any Iranian unless he himself requests it or acquires the citizenship of another country.

Article 42  [Nationalization]
Foreign nationals may acquire Iranian citizenship within the framework of the laws.  Citizenship may be withdrawn from such persons if another State accepts them as its citizens or if they request it.

Chapter IV  Economy and Financial Affairs

Article 43  [Principles]
The economy of the Islamic Republic of Iran, with its objectives of achieving the economic independence of the society, uprooting poverty and deprivation, and fulfilling human needs in the process of development while preserving human liberty, is based on the following criteria:
1. the provision of basic necessities for all citizens: housing, food, clothing, hygiene, medical treatment, education, and the necessary facilities for the establishment of a family;
2. ensuring conditions and opportunities of employment for everyone, with a view to attaining full employment; placing the means of work at the disposal of everyone who is able to work but lacks the means, in the form of cooperatives, through granting interest-free loans or recourse to any other legitimate means that neither results in the concentration or circulation of wealth in the hands of a few individuals or groups, nor turns the government into a major absolute employer.  These steps must be taken with due regard for the requirements governing the general economic planning of the country at each stage of its growth;
3. the plan for the national economy must be structured in such a manner that the form, content, and hours of work of every individual will allow him sufficient leisure and energy to engage, beyond his professional endeavor, in intellectual, political, and social activities leading to all-round developmentof his self, to take active part in leading the affairs of the country, improve his skills, and to make full use of his creativity;
4. respect for the right to choose freely an occupation; refraining from compelling anyone to engage in a particular job; and preventing the exploitation of another’s labor;
5. the prohibition of infliction of harm and loss upon others, monopoly, hoarding, usury, and other illegitimate and evil practices;
6. the prohibition of extravagance and wastefulness in all matters related to the economy, including consumption, investment, production, distribution, and services;
7. the utilization of and the training of skilled personnel in accordance with the developmental needs of the country’s economy;
8. prevention of foreign economic domination over the country’s economy:
9. emphasis on increase of agricultural, livestock, and industrial production in order to satisfy public needs and to make the country self-sufficient and free from dependence.

Article 44  [Sectors]
(1) The economy of the Islamic Republic of Iran is to consist of three sectors: state, cooperative, and private, and is to be based on systematic and sound planning.
(2) The state sector is to include all large-scale and mother industries, foreign trade, major minerals, banking, insurance, power generation, dams, and large-scale irrigation networks, radio and television, post, telegraph and telephone services, aviation, shipping, roads, railroads and the like; all these will be publicly owned and adMinistered by the State.
(3) The cooperative sector is to include cooperative companies and enterprises concerned with production and distribution, in urban and rural areas, in accordance with Islamic criteria.
(4) The private sector consists of those activities concerned with agriculture, animal husbandry, industry, trade, and services that supplement the economic activities of the state and cooperative sectors.
(5) Ownership in each of these three sectors is protected by the laws of the Islamic Republic, in so far as this ownership is in conformity with the other articles of this chapter, does not go beyond the bounds of Islamic law, contributes to the economic growth and progress of the country and does not harm society.
(6) The scope of each of these sectors as well as the regulations and conditions governing their operation, will be specified by law.

Article 45  [Public Wealth]
Public wealth and property, such as uncultivated or abandoned land, mineral deposits, seas, lakes, rivers and other public waterways, mountains, valleys, forests, marshlands, natural forests, unenclosed pastures, legacies without heirs, property of undetermined ownership, and public property recovered from usurpers, shall be at the disposal of the Islamic government for it to utilize in accordance with the public interest.  Law will specify detailed procedures for the utilization of each of the foregoing items.

Article 46  [Fruits of Business]
Everyone is the owner of the fruits of his legitimate business and labor, and no one may deprive another of the opportunity of business and work under the pretext of his right to ownership.

Article 47  [Private Property]
Private ownership, legitimately acquired, is to be respected. The relevant criteria are determined by law.

Article 48  [Resources for Regions]
There must be no discrimination among the various provinces with regard to the exploitation of natural resources, utilization of public revenues, and distribution of economic activities among the various provinces and regions of the country, thereby ensuring  that every region has access to the necessary capital and facilities in accordance with its needs and capacity for growth.

Article 49  [Confiscation]
The government has the responsibility of confiscating all wealth accumulated through usury, usurpation, bribery, embezzlement, theft, gambling, misuse of endowments, misuse of government contracts and transactions, the sale of uncultivated lands and other resources subject to public ownership, the operation of centers of corruption, and other illicit means and sources, and restoring it to its legitimate owner; and if no such owner can be identified, it must be entrusted to the public treasury.  This rule must be executed by the government with due care, after investigation and furnishing necessary evidence in accordance with the law of Islam.

Article 50  [Preservation of the Environment]
The preservation of the environment, in which the present as well as the future generations have a right to flourishing social existence, is regarded as a public duty in the Islamic Republic.  Economic and other activities that inevitably involve pollution of the environment or cause irreparable damage to it are therefore forbidden.

Article 51  [Taxation]
No form of taxation may be imposed except in accordance with the law.  Provisions for tax exemption and reduction will be determined by law.

Article 52  [Budget]
The annual budget5325 of the country will be drawn up by the government in the manner specified by law and submitted to the Islamic Consultative Assembly for discussion and approval.  Any change in the figures contained in the budget will be in accordance with the procedure prescribed by law.

Article 53  [Central Treasury]
All sums collected by the government will be deposited into the government accounts at the central treasury, and all disbursements, within the limits of allocations approved, shall be made in accordance with law.

Article 54  [Acounting Agency]
The National Accounting Agency is to be directly under the supervision of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.  Its organization and mode of operation in Tehran and at the provincial capitals are to be determined by law.

Article 55  [Auditing, Report]
The National Accounting Agency will inspect and audit, in the manner prescribed by law, all the accounts of ministries, government institutions, and companies as well as other organizations that draw, in any way, on the general budget of the country, to ensure that no expenditure exceeds the allocations approved and that all sums are spent for the specified purpose.  It will collect all relevant accounts, documents, and records, in accordance with law, and submit to the Islamic Consultative Assembly a report for the settlement ofeach year’s budget together with its own comments.  This report must be made available to the public.

Chapter V  The Right of National Sovereignty

Article 56  [Divine Right of Sovereignty]
Absolute sovereignty over the world and man belongs to God, and it is He Who has made man master of his own social destiny.  No one can deprive man of this divine right, nor subordinate it to the vested interests of a particular individual or group.  The people are to exercise this divine right in the manner specified in the following articles.

Article 57  [Separation of Powers]
The powers of government in the Islamic Republic are vested in the legislature, the judiciary, and the executive powers, functioning under the supervision of the absolute religious Leader and the Leadership of the Ummah, in accordance with the forthcoming articles of this Constitution.  These powers are independent of each other.

Article 58  [Legislature]
The functions of the legislature are to be exercised through the Islamic Consultative Assembly, consisting of the elected representatives of the people.  Legislation approved by this body, after going through the stages specified in the articles below, is communicated to the executive and the judiciary for implementation.

Article 59  [Mandatory Referendum]
In extremely important economic, political, social, and cultural matters, the functions of the legislature may be exercised through direct recourse to popular vote through a referendum.  Any request for such direct recourse to public opinion must be approved by two-thirds of the members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 60  [Executive]
The functions of the executive, except in the matters that are directly placed under the jurisdiction of the Leadership by the Constitution, are to be exercised by the President and the Ministers.

Article 61  [Judiciary]
The functions of the judiciary are to be performed by courts of justice, which are to be formed in accordance with the criteria of Islam, and are vested with the authority to examine and settle lawsuits, protect the rights of the public, dispense and enact justice, and implement the Divine limits.

Chapter VI  The Legislative Powers

 

Section 1  The Islamic Consultative Assembly

Article 62  [Election]
(1) The Islamic Consultative Assembly532 is constituted by the representatives of the people elected directly and by secret ballot.6271
(2) The qualifications of voters and candidates, as well as the nature of election, will be specified by law.

Article 63  [Term]
The term of membership in the Islamic Consultative Assembly is four years.  Elections for each term must take place before the end of the preceding term, so that the country is never without an Assembly.

Article 64  [270 Members, Religious Representatives]
(1) There are to be two hundred seventy members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly which, keeping in view the human, political, geographic, and other similar factors, may increase by not more than twenty for each ten-year period from the date of the national referendum of the year 1368 of the solar Islamic calendar.
(2) The Zoroastrians and Jews will each elect one representative; Assyrian and Chaldean Christians will jointly elect one representative; and Armenian Christians in the north and those in the south of the country will each elect one representative.
(3) The delimitation of the election constituencies and the number of representatives will be determined by law.

Article 65  [Quorum, Code of Procedure]
(1) After the holding of elections, sessions of the Islamic Consultative Assembly are considered legally valid when two-thirds of the total number of members are present.  Drafts and bills will be approved in accordance with the code of procedure approved by it, except in cases where the Constitution has specified a certain quorum.
(2) The consent of two-thirds of all members present is necessary for the approval of the code of procedure of the Assembly.

Article 66  [Rules of Procedure]
The manner of election of the Speaker and the Presiding Board of the Assembly, the number of committees and their term of office, and matters related to conducting the discussions and maintaining the discipline of the assembly will be determined by the code of procedure of the Assembly.

Article 67  [Oath]
(1) Members of the Assembly must take the following oath at the first session of the Assembly and affix their signatures to its text:
“In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.  In the presence of the Glorious Koran, I swear by God, the Exalted and Almighty, and undertake, swearing by my own honor as a human being, to protect the sanctity of Islam and guard the accomplishments of the Islamic Revolution of the Iranian people and the foundations of the Islamic Republic; to protect, as a just trustee, the honor bestowed upon me by the people, to observe piety in fulfilling my duties as people’s representative; to remain always committed to the independence and honor of the country; to fulfil my duties towards the nation and the service of the people; to defend the Constitution; and to bear in mind, boath in speech and writing and in the expression of my views, the independence of the country, the freedom of the people, and the security of their interests.”
(2) Members belonging to the religious minorities will swear by their own sacred books while taking this oath.
(3) Members not attending the first session will perform the ceremony of taking the oath at the first session they attend.

Article 68  [Suspended Elections During Wartime]
In time of war and the military occupation of the country, elections due to be held in occupied areas or countrywide may be suspended for a specified period if proposed by the President of the Republic, and approved by three-fourths of the total members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, with the endorsement of the Guardian Council.  If a new Assembly is not formed, the previous one will continue to function.

Article 69  [Publicity, Closed Sessions]
The deliberations of the Islamic Consultative Assembly must be open and full minutes of them made available to the public by the radio and the official gazette.  A closed session may be held in emergency conditions, if it is required for national security, upon the requisition of the President, one of the Ministers, or ten members of the Assembly.  Legislation passed at a closed session is valid only when approved by three-fourths of the members in the presence of the Guardian Council.  After emergency conditions have ceased to exist, the minutes of such closed sessions, together with any legislation approved in them, must be made available to the public.

Article 70  [Government Attendance]
The President, his deputies and the Ministers have the right to participate in the open sessions of the Assembly either collectively or individually.  They may also have their advisers accompany them.  If the members of the Assembly deem it necessary, the Ministers are obliged to attend.  Whenever they request it, their statements are to be heard.

Section 2  Powers and Authority of the Islamic Consultative Assembly

Article 71  [Legislation]
The Islamic Consultative Assembly can establish laws5323 on all matters, within the limits of its competence as laid down in the Constitution.

Article 72  [Limits]
The Islamic Consultative Assembly cannot enact laws contrary to the official religion of the country or to the Constitution.  It is the duty of the Guardian Council to determine whether a violation has occurred, in accordance with Article 96.

Article 73  [Interpretation of Laws]
The interpretation of ordinary laws falls within the competence of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.  The intent of this article does not prevent the interpretations that judges may make in the course of cassation.

Article 74  [Bills]
Government bills are presented to the Islamic Consultative Assembly after receiving the approval of the Council of Ministers.  Members’ bills may be introduced in the Islamic Consultative Assembly if sponsored by at least fifteen members.

Article 75  [Spending Bills]
Members’ bills and proposals and amendments to government bills proposed by members that entail the reduction of the public income or the increase of public expenditure may be introduced in the Assembly only if means for compensating for the decrease in income or for meeting the new expenditure are also specified.

Article 76  [Investigation]
The Islamic Consultative Assembly has the right to investigate and examine all the affairs of the country.

Article 77  [Treaties]
International treaties, protocols, contracts, and agreements must be approved by the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 78  [Boundary Laws]
All changes in the boundaries of the country are forbidden, with the exception of minor amendments in keeping with the interests of the country, on condition that they are not unilateral, do not encroach on the independence and territorialintegrity of the country, and receive the approval of four-fifths of the total members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 79  [Martial Law, Temporary Restrictions]
The proclamation of martial law is forbidden.  In case of war or emergency conditions comparable to war, the government has the right to impose temporarily certain necessary restrictions, with the agreement of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.  In no case can such restrictions last for more than thirty days; if the need for them persists beyond this limit, the government must obtain new authorization for them from the Assembly.

Article 80  [Aid]
The taking and giving of governmental loans or grants-in-aid, domestic and foreign, must be approved by the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 81  [Foreign Business]
The granting of concessions to foreigners or the formation of companies or institutions dealing with commerce, industry, agriculture, service, or mineral extraction, is absolutely forbidden.

Article 82  [Foreign Experts]
The employment of foreign experts is forbidden, except in cases of necessity and with the approval of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 83  [Property of National Heritage]
Government buildings and properties forming part of the national heritage cannot be transferred except with the approval of the Islamic Consultative Assembly; that, too, is not applicable in the case of irreplaceable treasures.

Article 84  [Responsibility]
Every representative is responsible to the entire nation and has the right to express his views on all internal and external affairs of the country.

Article 85  [Delegated Legislation]
(1) The right of membership is vested with the individual, and is not transferable to others.  The Assembly cannot delegate the power of legislation to an individual or committee.  But whenever necessary, it can delegate the power of legislating certain laws to its own committees, in accordance with Article 72.  In such a case, the laws will be implemented on a tentative basis for a period specified by the Assembly, and their final approval will rest with the Assembly.
(2) Likewise, the Assembly may, in accordance with Article 72, delegate to the relevant committees the responsibility for permanent approval of articles of association of organizations, companies, government institutions, or organizations affiliated to the government and or invest the authority in the government.  In such a case, the government approvals must not be inconsistent with the principles and commandments of the official religion in the country or with the Constitution, which question shall be determined by the Guardian Council in accordance with what is stated in Article 96.  In addition to this, the Government approvals shall not be against the laws and other general rules of the country and, while calling for implementation, the same shall be brought to the knowledge of the Speaker of the Islamic Consultative Assembly for his study and indication that the approvals in question are not inconsistent with the aforesaid rules.

Article 86  [Independence, Indemnity]
Members of the Assembly are completely free in expressing their views and casting their votes in the course of performing their duties as representatives, and they cannot be prosecuted or arrested for opinions expressed in the Assembly or votes cast in the course of performing their duties as representatives.

Article 87  [Vote of Confidence]
The President must obtain, for the Council of Ministers, after being formed and before all other business, a vote of confidence from the Assembly.  During his incumbency, he can also seek a vote of confidence for the Council of Ministers from the Assembly on important and controversial issues.

Article 88  [Questioning Government]
Whenever at least one-fourth of the total members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly pose a question to the President, or any one member of the Assembly poses a question to a Minister on a subject relating to their duties, the President or the Minister is obliged to attend the Assembly and answer the question.  This answer must not be delayed more than one month in the case of the President and ten days in the case of the Minister, except with an excuse deemed reasonable by the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 89  [Interpellation]
(1) Members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly  can interpellate the Council of Ministers or an individual Minister in instances they deem necessary.  Interpellations can be tabled if they bear the signatures of at least ten members.
The Council of Ministers or interpellated Minister must be present in the Assembly within ten days after the tabling of the interpellation in order to answer it and seek a vote of confidence.  If the Council of Ministers or the Minister concerned fails to attend the Assembly, the members who tabled the interpellation will explain their reasons, and the Assembly  will declare a vote of no confidence if it deems it necessary.
If the Assembly does not pronounce a vote of confidence, the Council of Ministers or the Minister subject to interpellation is dismissed.  In both cases, the Ministers subject to interpellation cannot become members of the next Council of Ministers formed immediately afterwards.
(2) In the event at least one-third of the members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly interpellate the President concerning his executive responsibilities in relation with the Executive Power and the executive affairs of the country the President must be present in the Assembly within one month after the tabling of the interpellation in order to give adequate explanations in regard to the matters raised. In the event, after hearing the statements of the opposing and favoring members and the reply of the President, two-thirds of the members of the Assembly declare a vote of no confidence, the same will be communicated to the Leadership for information and implementation of Article 110 (10).

Article 90  [Complaints, Petitions]
Whoever has a complaint concerning the work of the Assembly or the executive power or the judicial power can forward his complaint in writing to the Assembly.  The Assembly must investigate his complaint and give a satisfactory reply.  In cases where the complaint relates to the executive or the judiciary, the Assembly must demand proper investigation in the matter and an adequate explanation from them, and announce the results within a reasonable time.  In cases where the subject of the complaint is of public interest, the reply must be madepublic.

Article 91  [Guardian Council]
With a view to safeguard the Islamic ordinances and the Constitution, in order to examine the compatibility of the legislation passed by the Islamic Consultative Assembly with Islam, a council to be known as the Guardian Council is to be constituted with the following composition:
1. six religious men, conscious of the present needs and the issues of the day, to be selected by the Leader, and
2. six jurists, specializing in different areas of law, to be elected by the Islamic Consultative Assembly from among the Muslim jurists nominated by the Head of the Judicial Power.

Article 92  [Term]
Members of the Guardian Council are elected to serve for a period of six years, but during the first term, after three years have passed, half of the members of each group will be changed by lot and new members will be elected in their place.

Article 93  [Mandatory Formation]
The Islamic Consultative Assembly does not hold any legal status if there is no Guardian Council in existence, except for the purpose of approving the credentials of its members and the election of the six jurists on the Guardian Council.

Article 94  [Review of Legislation]
All legislation passed by the Islamic Consultative Assembly must be sent to the Guardian Council.  The Guardian Council must review it within a maximum of ten days from its receipt with a view to ensuring its compatibility with the criteria of Islam and the Constitution.  If it finds the legislation incompatible, it will return it to the Assembly for review.  Otherwise the legislation will be deemed enforceable.

Article 95  [Extended Review]
In cases where the Guardian Council deems ten days inadequate for completing the process of review and delivering a definite opinion, it can request the Islamic Consultative Assembly to grant an extension of the time limit not exceeding ten days.

Article 96  [Majority]
The determination of compatibility of the legislation passed by the Islamic Consultative Assembly with the laws of Islam rests with the majority vote of the religious men on the Guardian Council; and the determination of its compatibility with the Constitution rests with the majority of all the members of the Guardian Council.

Article 97  [Attendance in Parliament]
In order to expedite the work, the members of the Guardian Council may attend the Assembly and listen to its debates when a government bill or a members’ bill is under discussion.  When an urgent government or members’ bill is placed on the agenda of the Assembly, the members of the Guardian Council must attend the Assembly and make their views known.

Article 98  [Authoritative Interpretation]
The authority of the interpretation of the Constitution is vested with the Guardian Council, which is to be done with the consent of three-fourths of its members.

Article 99  [Supervision of Elections]
The Guardian Council has the responsibility of supervising the elections of the Assembly of Experts for Leadership, the President of the Republic, the Islamic Consultative Assembly,and the direct recourse to popular opinion and referenda.

Chapter VII  Councils

Article 100  [Regional Councils]
(1) In order to expedite social, economic, development, public health, cultural, and educational programs and facilitate other affairs relating to public welfare with the cooperation of the people according to local needs, the administration of each village, division, city, municipality, and province will be superseded by a council to be named the Village, Division, City, Municipality, or Provincial Council.528  Members of each of these councils will be elected by the people of the locality in question.
(2) Qualifications for the eligibility of electors and candidates for these councils, as well as their functions and powers, the mode of election, the council jurisdiction, and the hierarchy of their authority will be determined by law in such a way as to preserve national unity, territorial integrity, the system of the Islamic Republic, and the sovereignty of the central government.

Article 101  [Supreme Council of the Provinces]
(1) In order to prevent discrimination in the preparation of programs for the development and welfare of the provinces, to secure the cooperation of the people, and to arrange for the supervision of coordinated implementation of such programs, a Supreme Council of the Provinces will be formed, composed of representatives of the Provincial Councils.
(2) Law will specify the manner in which this council is to be formed and the functions that it is to fulfil.

Article 102  [Council Bills]
The Supreme Council of the Provinces has the right within its jurisdiction, to draft bills and to submit them to the Islamic Consultative Assembly, either directly or through the government.  These bills must be examined by the Assembly.

Article 103  [Power Over Local Governments]
Provincial governors, city governors, divisional governors, and other officials appointed by the government must abide by all decisions taken by the councils within their jurisdiction.

Article 104  [Worker Councils]
(1) In order to ensure Islamic equity and cooperation in carrying out the programs and to bring about the harmonious progress of all units of production, both industrial and agricultural, councils consisting of the representatives of the workers, peasants, other employees, and managers, will be formed in educational and administrative units, units of service industries, and other units of a like nature, similar councils will be formed, composed of representatives of the members of those units.
(2) The mode of the formation of these councils and the scope of their functions and powers, are to be specified by law.

Article 105  [Limits]
Decisions taken by the councils must not be contrary to the criteria of Islam and the laws of the country.

Article 106  [Right Against Dissolution]
(1) The councils may not be dissolved unless they deviate from their legal duties.  The body responsible for determining such deviation, as well as the manner for dissolving the councils and reforming them, will be specified by law.
(2) Should a council have any objection to its dissolution, it hasthe right to appeal to a competent court, and the court is duty-bound to examine its complaint outside the docket sequence.

Chapter VIII  The Leader or Leadership Council

Article 107  [Religious Leader]
(1) After the demise of Imam Khumayni, the task of appointing the Leader51 shall be vested with the experts elected by the people.  The experts will review and consult among themselves concerning all the religious men possessing the qualifications specified in Articles 5 and 109.  In the event they find one of them better versed in Islamic regulations or in political and social issues, or possessing general popularity or special prominence for any of the qualifications mentioned in Article 109, they shall elect him as the Leader.  Otherwise, in the absence of such a superiority, they shall elect and declare one of them as the Leader.  The Leader thus elected by the Assembly of Experts shall assume all the powers of the religious leader and all the responsibilities arising therefrom.
(2) The Leader is equal with the rest of the people of the country in the eyes of law.

Article 108  [Experts]
The law setting out the number and qualifications of the experts, the mode of their election, and the code of procedure regulating the sessions during the first term must be drawn up by the religious men on the first Guardian Council, passed by a majority of votes and then finally approved by the Leader of the Revolution.  The power to make any subsequent change or a review of this law, or approval of all the provisions concerning the duties of the experts is vested in themselves.

Article 109  [Leadership Qualifications]
(1) Following are the essential qualifications and conditions for the Leader:
a. Scholarship, as required for performing the functions of religious leader in different fields.
b. Justice and piety, as required for the leadership of the Islamic Ummah.
c. Right political and social perspicacity, prudence, courage, administrative facilities, and adequate capability for leadership.
(2) In case of multiplicity of persons fulfilling the above qualifications and conditions, the person possessing the better jurisprudential and political perspicacity will be given preference.

Article 110  [Leadership Duties and Powers]
(1) Following are the duties and powers of the Leadership:
1. Delineation of the general policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran after consultation with the Nation’s Exigency Council.
2. Supervision over the proper execution of the general policies of the system.
3. Issuing decrees for national referenda.
4. Assuming supreme command of the Armed Forces.
5. Declaration of war and peace and the mobilization of the Armed Forces.
6. Appointment, dismissal, and resignation of:
a. the religious men on the Guardian Council,
b. the supreme judicial authority of the country,
c. the head of the radio and television network of the Islamic Republic of Iran,
d. the chief of the joint staff,
e. the chief commander of the Isalmic Revolution Guards Corps, and
f. the supreme commanders of the Armed Forces.
7. Resolving differences between the three wings of the Armed Forces and regulation of their relations.
8. Resolving the problems which cannot be solved by conventional methods, through the Nation’s Exigency Council.
9. Signing the decree formalizing the election of the President of the Republic by the people.  The suitability of candidates for the Presidency of the Republic, with respect to the qualifications specified in the Constitution, must be confirmed before elections take place by the Guardian Council, and, in the case of the first term of a President, by the Leadership.
10. Dismissal of the President of the Republic, with due regard for the interests of the country, after the Supreme Court holds him guilty of the violation of his constitutional duties, or after a vote of the Islamic Consultative Assembly testifying to his incompetence on the basis of Article 89.
11. Pardoning or reducing the sentences of convicts, within the framework of Islamic criteria, on a recommendation from the Head of judicial power.
(2) The Leader may delegate part of his duties and powers to another person.

Article 111  [Leadership Council]
(1) Whenever the Leader becomes incapable of fulfilling his constitutional duties, or loses one of the qualifications mentioned in Articles 5 and 109, or it becomes known that he did not possess some of the qualifications initially, he will be dismissed.  The authority of determination in this matter is vested with the experts specified in Article 108.
(2) In the event of the death, or resignation or dismissal of the Leader, the experts shall take steps within the shortest possible time for the appointment of the new Leader.  Until the appointment of the new Leader, a council consisting of the President, head of the judiciary power, and a religious men from the Guardian Council, upon the decision of the Nation’s Exigency Council, shall temporarily take over all the duties of the Leader.  In the event that, during this period, any one of them is unable to fulfil his duties for whatsoever reason, another person, upon the decision of majority of religious men in the Nation’s Exigency Council shall be elected in his place.
(3) This council shall take action in respect of items 1, 3, 5, and 10, and sections d, e and f of item 6 of Article 110, upon the decision of three-fourths of the members of the Nation’s Exigency Council.
(4) Whenever the leader becomes temporarily unable to perform the duties of leadership owing to his illness or any other incident, then during this period, the council mentioned in this article shall assume his duties.

Article 112  [Exigency Council]
(1) Upon the order of the Leader, the Nation’s Exigency Council shall meet at any time the Guardian Council judges a proposed bill of the Islamic Consultative Assembly to be against the principles of Sharrah or the Constitution, and the Assembly is unable to meet the expectations of the Guardian Council.  Also, the Council shall meet for consideration on any issue forwarded to it by the Leader and shall carry out any other responsibility as mentioned in this Constitution.
(2) The permanent and changeable members of the Council shall be appointed by the Leader.
(3) The rule for the Council shall be formulated and approved by the Council members subject to the confirmation by the Leader.

Chapter IX  The Executive Power

 

Section 1  The Presidency

Article 113  [President]
After the office of Leadership, the President is the highest official in the country.  His is the responsibility for implementing the Constitution and acting as the head of the executive, except in matters directly concerned with the office of the Leadership.

Article 114  [Term]
The President is elected for a four-year term by the direct vote of the people.  His re-election for a successive term is permissible only once.

Article 115  [Qualifications]
The President must be elected from among religious and political personalities possessing the following qualifications:
– Iranian origin;
– Iranian nationality;
– administrative capacity and resourcefulness;
– a good pastrecord;
– trustworthiness and piety; and
– convinced belief in the fundamental principles of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the official madhhab of the country.

Article 116  [Candidacy]
Candidates nominated for the post of President must declare their candidature officially.  Law lays down the manner in which the President is to be elected.

Article 117  [Majority]
The President is elected by an absolute majority of votes polled by the voters.  But if none of the candidates is able to win such a majority in the first round, voting will take place a second time on Friday of the following week.  In the second round only the two candidates who received greatest number of votes in the first round will participate.  If, however, some of the candidates securing greatest votes in the first round withdraw from the elections, the final choice will be between the two candidates who won greater number of votes than all the remaining candidates.

Article 118  [Supervisory Body]
Responsibility for the supervision of the election of the President lies with the Guardian Council, as stipulated in Article 99.  But before the establishment of the first Guardian Council, it lies with a supervisory body to be constituted by law.

Article 119  [New Elections]
The election of a new President must take place no later than one month before the end of the term of the outgoing President.  In the interim period before the election of the new President and the end of the term of the outgoing President, the outgoing President will perform the duties of the President.

Article 120  [Extensions]
In case any of the candidates whose suitability is established in terms of the qualifications listed above should die within ten days before polling day, the elections will be postponed for two weeks.  If one of the candidates securing greatest number of votes dies in the intervening period between the first and second rounds of voting, the period for holding the second round of the election will be extended for two weeks.

Article 121  [Oath]
The President must take the following oath and affix his signature to it at a session of the Islamic Consultative Assemblyin the presence of the head of the judicial power and the members of the Guardian Council:
“In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful, I, as President, swear, in the presence of the noble members of parliament and the people of Iran, by God, the Exalted and Almighty, that I will guard the official religion of the country, the order of the Islamic Republic, and the Constitution of the country; that I will devote all my capacities and abilities to the fulfillment of the responsibilities that I have assumed; that I will dedicate myself to the service of the people, the honor of the country, the propagation of religion and morality, and the support of truth and justice, refraining from every kind of arbitrary behavior; that I will protect the freedom and dignity of all citizens and the rights that the Constitution has accorded the people; that in guarding the frontiers and the political, economic, and cultural independence of the country I will not avoid any necessary measure; that, seeking help from God and following the Prophet of Islam and the infallible Imams (peace be upon them), I will guard, as a pious and selfless trustee, the authority vested in me by the people as a sacred trust, and transfer it to whomever the people may elect after me.”

Article 122  [Responsibility]
The President, within the limits of his powers and duties, which he has by virtue of this Constitution or other laws, is responsible to the people, the Leader and the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 123  [Signing Legislation]
The President is obliged to sign legislation approved by the Assembly or the result of a referendum, after the legal procedures have been completed and it has been communicated to him.  After signing, he must forward it to the responsible authorities for implementation.

Article 124  [Presidential Deputies]
(1) The President may have deputies for the performance of his constitutional duties.
(2) With the approval of the President, the first deputy of the President shall be vested with the responsibilities of adMinistering the affairs of the Council of Ministers and coordination of functions of other deputies.

Article 125  [Treaties]
The President or his legal representative has the authority to sign treaties, protocols, contracts, and agreements concluded by the Iranian government with other governments, as well as agreements pertaining to international organizations, after obtaining the approval of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 126  [Planning, Budget]
The President is responsible for national planning and budget and state employment affairs and may entrust the administration of these to others.

Article 127  [Special Representatives]
In special circumstances, subject to approval of the Council of Ministers, the President may appoint one or more special representatives with specific powers. In such cases, the decisions of his representative(s) will be considered as the same as those of the President and the Council of Ministers.

Article 128  [Ambassadors]
The ambassadors shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the foreign Minister and approval of the President.  The President signs the credentials of ambassadors and receives thecredentials presented by the ambassadors of the foreign countries.

Article 129  [State Decorations]
The award of state decorations is a prerogative of the President.

Article 130  [Resignation]
The President shall submit his resignation to the Leader and shall continue performing his duties until his resignation is not accepted.

Article 131  [Interim President]
In case of death, dismissal, resignation, absence, or illness lasting longer than two months of the President or when his term in office has ended and a new president has not been elected due to some impediments, or similar other circumstances, his first deputy shall assume, with the approval of the Leader, the powers and functions of the President.  The Council, consisting of the Speaker of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, head of the judicial power, and the first deputy of the President, is obliged to arrange for a new President to be elected within a maximum period of fifty days.  In case of death of the first deputy to the President, or other matters which prevent him to perform his duties or when the President does not have a first deputy, the Leader shall appoint another person in his place.

Article 132  [Restricted Interim Period]
During the period when the powers and responsibilities of the President are assigned to his first deputy or the other person in accordance with Article 131, neither can the Ministers be interpellated nor can a vote of no confidence be passed against them.  Also, neither can any step be undertaken for a review of the Constitution, nor a national referendum be held.

Section 2  The President and Ministers

Article 133  [Appointment of Ministers]
Ministers will be appointed by the President and will be presented to the Assembly for a vote of confidence.  With the change of Assembly, a new vote of confidence will not be necessary.  The number of Ministers and the jurisdiction of each will be determined by law.

Article 134  [Council of Ministers]
(1) The President is the head of the Council of Ministers525.  He supervises the work of the Ministers and takes all necessary measures to coordinate the decisions of the government.  With the cooperation of the Ministers, he determines the program and policies of the government and implements the laws.
(2) In the case of discrepancies or interferences in the constitutional duties of the government agencies, the decision of the Council of Ministers at the request of the President shall be binding provided it does not call for an interpretation of or modification in the laws.
(3) The President is responsible to the Assembly for the actions of the Council of Ministers.

Article 135  [Dismissal, Caretaker]
(1) The Ministers shall continue in office unless they are dismissed, or given a vote of no confidence by the Assembly as a result of their interpellation, or a motion for a vote of no confidence against them.
(2) The resignation of the Council of Ministers or that of each of them shall be submitted to the President, and the Council of Ministers shall continue to function until such time as the newgovernment is appointed.
(3) The President can appoint a caretaker for maximum period of three months for the ministries having no Minister.

Article 136  [Vote of Confidence]
The President can dismiss the Ministers and in such a case he must obtain a vote of confidence for the new Minister(s) from the Assembly.  In case half of the members of the Council of Ministers are changed after the government has received its vote of confidence from the Assembly, the government must seek a fresh vote of confidence from the Assembly.

Article 137  [Responsibility]
Each of the Ministers is responsible for his duties to the President and the Assembly, but in matters approved by the Council of Ministers as a whole, he is also responsible for the actions of the others.

Article 138  [Implementation of Laws, Ministerial Commissions]
(1) In addition to instances in which the Council of Ministers or a single Minister is authorized to frame procedures for the implementation of laws, the Council of Ministers has the right to lay down rules, regulations, and procedures for performing its administrative duties, ensuring the implementation of laws, and setting up administrative bodies.  Each of the Ministers also has the right to frame regulations and issue orders in matters within his jurisdiction and in conformity with the decisions of the Council of Ministers.  However, the control of all such regulations must not violate the letter or the spirit of the law.
(2) The government can entrust any portion of its task to commissions composed of some Ministers.  The decisions of such commissions within the rules will be binding after the endorsement of the President.
(3) The ratifications and the regulations of the Government and the decisions of the commissions mentioned under this article shall also be brought to the notice of the Speaker of the Islamic Consultative Assembly while being communicated for implementation so that in the event he finds them contrary to law, he may send the same stating the reason for reconsideration by the Council of  Ministers.

Article 139  [Property Claims]
The settlement of claims relating to public and state property or the referral thereof to arbitration is in every case dependent on the approval of the Council of Ministers, and the Assembly must be informed of these matters.  In cases where one party to the dispute is a foreigner, as well as in important cases that are purely domestic, the approval of the Assembly must also be obtained.  Law will specify the important cases intended here.

Article 140  [No Immunity]
Allegations of common crimes against the President, his deputies, and the Ministers will be investigated in common courts of justice with the knowledge of the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 141  [Incompatibility]
(1) The President the deputies to the President Ministers and Government employees cannot hold more than one Government position, and it is forbidden for them to hold any kind of additional post in institutions of which all or a part of the capital belongs to the government or public institutions, to be a member of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, to practice the profession of attorney or legal adviser, or to hold the post of president managing director, or membership of the board ofdirectors of any kind of private company, with the exception of cooperative companies affiliated to the government departments and institutions.
(2) Teaching positions in universities and research institutions are exempted from this rule.

Article 142  [Asset Control]
The assets of the Leader, the President, the deputies to the President, and Ministers, as well as those of their spouses and offspring, are to be examined before and after their term of office by the head of the judicial power, in order to ensure they have not increased in a fashion contrary to law.

Section 3  The Army and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps

Article 143  [Army Functions]
The Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for guarding the independence and territorial integrity of the country, as well as the order of the Islamic Republic.

Article 144  [Islamic Army]
The Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran must be an Islamic Army, i.e., committed to Islamic ideology and the people, and must recruit into its service individuals who have faith in the objectives of the Islamic Revolution and are devoted to the cause of realizing its goals.

Article 145  [No Foreigners]
No foreigner will be accepted into the Army or security forces of the country.

Article 146  [No Foreign Military Base]
The establishment of any kind of foreign military base in Iran, even for peaceful purposes, is forbidden.

Article 147  [Peace Functions]
In time of peace, the government must utilize the personnel and technical equipment of the Army in relief operations, and for educational and productive ends, and the Construction Jihad while fully observing the criteria of Islamic justice and ensuring that such utilization does not harm the combat-readiness of the Army.

Article 148  [No Personal Use]
All forms of personal use of military vehicles, equipment, and other means, as well as taking advantage of Army and chauffeurs or bidden.

Article 149  [Promotions]
Promotions in military rank and their withdrawal take place in accordance with the law.

Article 150  [Islamic Revolution Guards Corps]
The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, organized in the early days of the triumph of the Revolution, is to be maintained so that it may continue in its role of guarding the Revolution and its achievements.  The scope of the duties of this Corps, and its areas of responsibility, in relation to the duties and areas of responsibility of the other Armed Forces, are to be determined by law with emphasis on brotherly cooperation and harmony among them.

Article 151  [Military Training]
In accordance with the noble Koranic verse: “Prepare against them whatever force you are able to muster, and horses ready for battle, striking fear into God’s enemy and your enemy, andothers beyond them unknown to you but known to God…” [8:60], the government is obliged to provide a program of military training, with all requisite facilities, for all its citizens, in accordance with the Islamic criteria, in such a way that all citizens will always be able to engage in the armed defence of the Islamic Republic of Iran.  The possession of arms, however, requires the granting of permission by the competent authorities.

Chapter X  Foreign Policy

Article 152  [Principles]
The foreign policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran is based upon the rejection of all forms of domination, both the exertion of it and submission to it, the preservation of the independence of the country in all respects and its territorial integrity, the defence of the rights of all Muslims, nonalignment with respect to the hegemonist superpowers, and the maintenance of mutually peaceful relations with all non-belligerent States.

Article 153  [No Foreign Control]
Any form of agreement resulting in foreign control over the natural resources, economy, army, or culture of the country, as well as other aspects of the national life, is forbidden.

Article 154  [Independence, Support of Just Struggles]
The Islamic Republic of Iran has as its ideal human felicity throughout human society, and considers the attainment of independence, freedom, and rule of justice and truth to be the right of all people of the world.  Accordingly, while scrupulously refraining from all forms of interference in the internal affairs of other nations, it supports the just struggles of the freedom fighters against the oppressors in every corner of the globe.

Article 155  [Asylum]
The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran may grant political asylum to those who seek it unless they are regarded as traitors and saboteurs according to the laws of Iran.

Chapter XI  The Judiciary

Article 156  [Status, Functions]
The judiciary is an independent power, the protector of the rights of the individual and society, responsible for the implementation of justice, and entrusted with the following duties:
1. investigating and passing judgement on grievances, violations of rights, and complaints; the resolution of litigation; the settling of disputes; and the taking of all necessary decisions and measures in probate matters as the law may determine;
2. restoring public rights and promoting justice and legitimate freedoms;
3. supervising the proper enforcement of laws;
4. uncovering crimes; prosecuting, punishing, and chastising criminals; and enacting the penalties and provisions of the Islamic penal code; and
5. taking suitable measures to prevent the occurrence of crime and to reform criminals.

Article 157  [Head of Judiciary]
In order to fulfil the responsibilities of the judiciary power in all the matters concerning judiciary, administrative and executive areas, the Leader shall appoint a just honorable man well versed in judiciary affairs and possessing prudence and administrative abilities as the head of the judiciary power for a period of fiveyears who shall be the highest judicial authority.

Article 158  [Functions of the Head of Judiciary]
The Head of Judiciary is responsible for the following:
1. Establishment of structure necessary for the justice commensurate with mentioned under Article 156.
2. Drafting judiciary bills appropriate for the Islamic Republic.
3. Employment of just and worthy judges, their dismissal, appointment, transfer, assignment to particular duties, promotions, and carrying out similar administrative duties, in accordance with the law.

Article 159  [Courts]
The courts of justice541 are the official bodies to which all grievances and complaints are to be referred.  The formation of courts and their jurisdiction is to be determined by law.

Article 160  [Minister of Justice]
(1) The Minister of Justice owes responsibility in all matters concerning the relationship between the judiciary on the one hand and the executive and legislative branches on the other hand.  He will be elected from among the individuals proposed to the President by the head of the judiciary branch.
(2) The head of the judiciary may delegate full authority to the Minister of Justice in financial and administrative areas and for employment of personnel other than judges in which case the Minister of Justice shall have the same authority and responsibility as those possessed by the other Ministers in their capacity as the highest ranking government executives.

Article 161  [Supreme Court]
The Supreme Court5413 is to be formed for the purpose of supervising the correct implementation of the laws by the courts, ensuring uniformity of judicial procedure, and fulfilling any other responsibilities assigned to it by law, on the basis of regulations to be established by the head of the judicial branch.

Article 162  [Chief of the Supreme Court, Prosecutor-General]
The Chief of the Supreme Court and the Prosecutor-General must both be just honorable men well versed in judicial matters.  They will be nominated by the head of the judiciary branch for a period of five years, in consultation with the judges of the Supreme Court.

Article 163  [Qualifications]
The conditions and qualifications to be fulfilled by a judge will be determined by law, in accordance with religious criteria.

Article 164  [Independence]
A judge cannot be removed5421, whether temporarily or permanently, from the post he occupies except by trial and proof of his guilt, or in consequence of a violation entailing his dismissal.  A judge cannot be transferred or redesignated without his consent, except in cases when the interest of society necessitates it, that too, with the decision of the head of the judiciary branch after consultation with the chief of the Supreme Court and the Prosecutor General.  The periodic transfer and rotation of judges will be in accordance with general regulations to be laid down by law.

Article 165  [Public Trials]
Trials are to be held openly and members of the public may attend without any restriction unless the court determines that an open trial would be detrimental to public morality or discipline, or if in case of private disputes, both the parties request not to hold open hearing.

Article 166  [Reasoned Verdicts]
The verdicts of courts must be well reasoned out and documented with reference to the articles and principles of the law in accordance with which they are delivered.

Article 167  [Rule of Law for Judiciary]
The judge is bound to endeavor to judge each case on the basis of the codified law.  In case of the absence of any such law, he has to deliver his judgement on the basis of authoritative Islamic sources and authentic fatawa.  He, on the pretext of the silence of or deficiency of law in the matter, or its brevity or contradictory nature, cannot refrain from admitting and examining cases and delivering his judgement.

Article 168  [Political and Press Offences]
Political and press offenses will be tried openly and in the presence of a jury, in courts of justice.  The manner of the selection of the jury, its powers, and the definition of political offenses, will be determined by law in accordance with the Islamic criteria.

Article 169  [Nulla Poena Sine Lege]
No act or omission may be regarded as a crime with retrospective  effect on the basis of a law framed subsequently.

Article 170  [Control of Regulations]
Judges of courts are obliged to refrain from executing statutes and regulations of the government that are in conflict with the laws or the norms of Islam, or lie outside the competence of the executive power.  Everyone has the right to demand the annulment of any such regulation from the Court of Administrative Justice.

Article 171  [Liability of Judges]
Whenever an individual suffers moral or material loss as the result of a default or error of the judge with respect to the subject matter of a case or the verdict delivered, or the application of a rule in a particular case, the defaulting judge must stand surety for the reparation of that loss in accordance with the Islamic criteria, if it be a case of default.  Otherwise, losses will be compensated for by the State.  In all such cases, the repute and good standing of the accused will be restored.

Article 172  [Military Courts]
Military courts will be established by law to investigate crimes committed in connection with military or security duties by members of the Army, the Gendarmerie, the police, and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps.  They will be tried in public courts, however, for common crimes or crimes committed while serving the department of justice in executive capacity.  The office of military prosecutor and the military courts form part of the judiciary and are subject to the same principles that regulate the judiciary.

Article 173  [Court of Administrative Justice]
In order to investigate the complaints, grievances, and objections of the people with respect to government officials, organs, and statutes, a court will be established to be known as the Court of Administrative Justice under the supervision of the head of the judiciary branch.  The jurisdiction, powers, and mode of operation of this court will be laid down by law.

Article 174  [National General Inspectorate]
In accordance with the right of the judiciary to supervise the proper conducting of affairs and the correct implementation of laws by the administrative organs of the government, anorganization will be constituted under the supervision of the head of the judiciary branch to be known as the National General Inspectorate.  The powers and duties of this organization will be determined by law.

Chapter XII  Radio and Television

Article 175  [Freedom of Expression, Government Control]
(1) The freedom of expression and dissemination of thoughts in the Radio and Television of the Islamic Republic of Iran must be guaranteed in keeping with the Islamic criteria and the best interests of the country.
(2) The appointment and dismissal of the head of the Radio and Television of the Islamic Republic of Iran rests with the Leader.  A council consisting of two representatives each of the President, the head of the judiciary branch, and the Islamic Consultative Assembly shall supervise the functioning of this organization.
(3) The policies and the manner of managing the organization and its supervision will be determined by law.

Chapter XIII  Supreme Council for National Security

Article 176  [Supreme Council for National Security]
(1) In order to safeguarding the national interests and preserving the Islamic Revolution, the territorial integrity, and the national sovereignty, a Supreme Council for National SecurityArmed_Forces presided over by the President shall be constituted to fulfil the following responsibilities:
1. Determining the defence and national security policies within the framework of general policies determined by the Leader;
2. coordination of activities in the areas relating to politics, intelligence, social, cultural and economic fields in regard to general defence and security policies; and
3. exploitation of materialistic and intellectual resources of the country for facing the internal and external threats.
(2) The Council shall consist of:
– the heads of three branches of the government,
– the chief of the Supreme Command Council of the Armed Forces,
– the officer in charge of the planning and budget affairs,
– two representatives nominated by the Leader,
– Ministers of foreign affairs, interior, and information,
– a Minister related with the subject, and
– the highest ranking officials from the Armed Forces and the Islamic Revolution’s Guards Corps.
(3) Commensurate with its duties, the Supreme Council for National Security shall form subcouncils such as Defence Subcouncil and National Security Subcouncil.  Each subcouncil will be presided over by the President or a member of the Supreme Council for National Security appointed by the President.
(4) The scope of authority and responsibility of the subcouncils will be determined by law and their organizational structure will be approved by the Supreme Council for National Defence.
(5) The decisions of the Supreme Council for National Security shall be effective after the confirmation by the Leader.

Chapter XIV  The Revision of the Constitution

Article 177  [Revision by Council and Referendum]
(1) The revision of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, whenever needed by the circumstances, will be done in the following manner:
The Leader issues an edict to the President after consultation with the Nation’s Exigency Council stipulating the amendmentsor additions to be made by the Council for Revision of the Constitution which consists of:
1. Members of the Guardian Council;
2. heads of the three branches of the government;
3. permanent members of the Nation’s Exigency Council;
4. five members from among the Assembly of Experts;
5. ten representatives selected by the Leader;
6. three representatives from the Council of Ministers;
7. three representatives from the judiciary branch;
8. ten representatives from among the members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly; and
9. three representatives from among the university professors.
(2) The method of working, manner of selection and the terms and conditions of the Council shall be determined by law.
(3) The decisions of the Council, after the confirmation and signatures of the Leader, shall be valid if approved by an absolute majority vote in a national referendum.
(4) The provisions of Article 59 shall not apply to the referendum for the “Revision of the Constitution.”
(5) The contents of the articles of the Constitution related to the Islamic character of the political system; the basis of all the rules and regulations according to Islamic criteria; the religious footing; the objectives of the Islamic Republic of Iran; the democratic character of the government; the holy principle; the Imamate of Ummah; and the administration of the affairs of the country based on national referenda, official religion of Iran and the religious school are unalterable.

Family Protection Bill (as amended in August 2011) – IRAN

 IRAN

In the Name of the Exalted

No: 36780/68357
Date 1/5/1386 [23 July 2007]

Dr. Haddad Adel
Respectable Head of the Islamic Consultative Majlis

The “family Protection Act” that was, as suggested by the Judiciary, ratified by the cabinet on 3/4/1386 [24 June 2007], is attached in order to undergo the proper legal procedures.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
President

 

With attention to the special role and status of family in the legal and educational classifications of Islam and nothing the illegalization of a portion of the law related to family rights, and the existence of absence of a legal procedure in this matter and due to dispersion and an absence of clarity on the abrogating body and abolishing of the laws cause repeated issues such as confusion for the Prosecution offices in processing family claims and in light of certain short comings and defects in laws governing the family and their lack of concurrence with the realities of the day and in order to act upon the content of article 21 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran and in order to achieve removal of judgment  and to reduce the existing problems in regulations of Family Law and remove ambiguity, expostulation and absence of law in the current family related law and to uphold section (2) of article (158) of the constitution, the act below is submitted to undergo proper legal procedures.

 

Family Protection Act

As amended by the Judicial and Legal Commission of the Majlis on August 21, 2011 (imbed link tohttp://www.khabaronline.ir/news-168927.aspx) Added text show in red. 

 

Chapter One: Family Court

Article 1 – In executing Note 3 of Article 21 of the Constitution and for the purpose of investigating family matters and claims that are subject of this law, the judiciary is duty bound to, within 3 years since the passage of this law form family courts in all the legal constituencies in the cities. Forming this court in legal constituencies of the districts is in correlation to possibilities and with discretion of the head of the judiciary

Note 1 – From the time of execution of this law, the general legal court of the judicial constituencies of cities where there is no family court will have subject matter jurisdiction, with attention to relevant formalities, to family matters and claims.

Note 2 – In legal constituency of the districts where no family court has been formed, the court located in that constituency, with attention to relevant formalities and regulations, will process the family claims other than claims related to marriage and its annulment that will be processed in the family court of the closest legal constituency.

Article 2 – Family court is formed with the presence of one chief or substitutable prosecutor and two advisors one of whom, if possible, will be a woman holding legal status. The meetings are official and verdicts are issued only if maximum presence is reached.

Article 3 – Chief or substitutable prosecutor of Family Court must be married and have at least four years of legal experience.

Article 4 – Matters and claims regarding the following will be investigated in the Family Court:

1-      Courtship and damages sustained due to its cancellation;

2-      Permanent and temporary marriage and permission in marriage;

3-      Conditions set while entering marriage;

4-      Marrying again;

5-      Dowry;

6-      Mihriyyih[1];

7-      Alimony to wife and payment in kind for the duration of  the marriage;

8-      Discord and obedience (this article used to specify the discord and obedience between the couple but removing that implies that the aforementioned are for the wife alone);

9-      Divorce, revocation, annulling and marriage annulment, amount of time and its expiration;

10-  Custody and visiting the child;

11-  Parentage;

12-  Development and no longer being a minor;

 


[1] Mihriyyih is a property man gives away or takes upon the payment of to the wife at the time of the signing of the marriage contract.

 

13-  Natural guardianship and guardianship and matters regarding the supervisor and trustee of the minors as well as administering between them;

14-  Alimony of the blood relations;

15-  Matters regarding an absent and missing person;

16-  Guardianship of children with no guardian;

17-  Offering away the fetus;

18-  Sex changing.

Note – the complaints of individuals subject to numbers 12 and 13 of this article will be processed based on the permission to consider the private matters of non-Shia Iranians in the courts, ratified on July 22, 1933 and the law to process the proposed complaints regarding the private and religious matters of Zoroastrian, Jewish and Christian Iranians, ratified by the Expediency discernment council on June 24, 1993. Decisions made by the religious authorities of aforementioned faiths on matters such as marriage and divorce will be upheld and held valid and enforced by the courts without further processing.

Article 5 – The court will also investigate matters explained in chapter six of this law.

Article 6 – Whichever side does not have adequate financial means, as decided by the court, will be excused from paying the prosecution expenses. Further, pursuant to the request of the person who lacks adequate financial support, the court will assign him an assistant council. If the court finds him to be transgressed upon, the court will issue a verdict and also find the transgressor responsible for paying the court costs as well as the cost for the assistant council, unless it was previously attained that he/she lacks adequate financial support as well.

Article 7 – Mother or any other person, who has the custody or is due to necessity in charge of the minor, even if he/she does not have guardianship, has the right to claim for receiving alimony for the minor.

Article 8 – Before deciding about the subject matter of the dispute, the court will issue temporary orders for matters that have urgency such as custody, upkeep, visiting the child, and wife’s alimony without acquiring a guarantee from either side. This order can be issued without the approval of the head of the legal constituency and if the court does not make a decision regarding the main subject of the dispute within six months time, it will be forfeited and removed, unless the court issues a temporary order regarding this matter again.

Article 9 – Investigating in Family Court will occur once a petition is submitted and without the other provisions of the Civil Procedural Code and with accordance to the procedural code for executing this law.

Article 10 – Communiqués of the Family court will be handed down via post, fax, phone messages, email or any other method the court deems fit. At any rate, ensuring the correctness of the communiqué is the responsibility of the court.

Article 11 – The court can postpone the court date for up to two times by request of the couple in order to provide them with more time for reconciliation.

Article 12 – In the claims that are subject of this law, once the court has issued a verdict, the transgressed upon can request the court that issued the initial verdict to hold the transgressor in custody until the sentence is carried out.

Article 13 – In cases where the topic of dispute is claiming of the moveable mihriyyih or alimony, the wife can issue the claim from her place of residence or living.

Article 14 – Whenever the couple have issues and claims that are subject to the jurisdiction of Family Court in multiple legal jurisdictions, the court that received the first petition is fit to process the claims and if multiple claims were filed on one day, the court that has the jurisdiction over the claims filed by the wife will process all the claims.

Article 15 – If one of the couple in dispute is resident of another country, the court with jurisdiction over the place of residence of the one who lives in the country is fit to process the claim. If both the couple are residents of another country but one is temporarily residing in Iran, the court of their place of residence, and if both are temporarily residing in Iran the court of the wife’s place of residence is fit to process the claim and if neither temporarily reside in Iran then the court of Tehran province has jurisdiction to process the claim, unless if the couple agree on another location for processing.

Article 16 – Head of the Judiciary can assign branches of the family courts of Tehran to investigate the claims of Iranian families who reside outside of the country and give the judges of those branches the responsibility, as per the request of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to investigate such claims in the consulate and embassy’s of Iran in those locals, until expiration of the responsibility. Verdict of these branches that are issued outside the country are executed just like those inside the country.

Note – Whenever, due to the aforementioned courts not existing or not being reachable, the Iranians residing outside of the country file their family related claims in competent courts of their place of residence, their verdict will only be carried out inside Iran if a competent Iranian court investigates the verdicts and issues a confirmation verdict.

Article 16 – If Iranians residing outside of the country resolve the disputed matters related to themselves in eligible courts of their place of residence, the verdicts issued by those courts will not be carried out in Iran unless a competence Iranian court process the decisions and issue a valid verdict.

Note – Verdict of divorce for Iranians residing outside of the country will be registered in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s consulates by written request of both parties or the husband and by submitting of the carry out of divorce by competent individuals introduced to the consulates by the suggestions of the foreign ministry and approval of the judiciary. In case of a reversible divorce, the completion ofiddah[2] must be noted. In the case of irreversible divorce, the wife can register her divorce in the consulate by submitting a written request and the certificate of divorce issued by competent individuals. Where the divorce is registered by request of the husband the wife can cite this law to demands her legal rights in Iranians courts.


[2] Iddah is the time period a woman has to wait after divorcing from her husband or the death of her husband before she can marry again. According to Shari’a this time is three months and ten days (100 days) and the purpose of it is to respect the previous marriage and to prevent mixing of offspring.

 

Chapter Two: Family Counseling Centers

Article 17 – In order to strengthen family values and prevent family disputes and in particular divorce, and in a strive to created peace and compatibility, the judiciary is duty bound to, within three years from the date of the passage of this law, form “Family Counseling Centers” along with Family Courts.

Article 18 – In a legal jurisdiction where the Family Counseling Centers are created, the court can wherever necessary, while outlining the disputed issues and designating a deadline, asks for the opinion of the Family Counseling Centers.

Article 19 – Along with offering counseling services, Family Counseling Centers attempt to execute court’s request in the allotted time and in the relevant case strive to achieve reconciliation. If achieved, a reconciliation note is written, otherwise, they will offer their expert opinion to court in writing and with reasoning.

Note – If the couple agrees to seek a divorce, the Family Counseling Center will act in accordance to article 26 of this law.

Article 20 – The court must take into account the expert opinion of the Family Counseling Center and then issue a verdict, unless it finds the aforementioned opinion in clear contradiction of the case’s situation.

Article 21 – Members of the Family Counseling Centers are selected from amongst experts in various fields such as psychology, social work, Law, jurisprudence and Islamic law, and at least half of the members of each center must be comprised of eligible married women. Other conditions, number of members, method of choosing, selection process, education and method of processing their transgressions, establishment, manner of carrying out responsibility, number of Family Counseling Centers and introducing their responsibilities and how they go about them is subject to a procedural code that will be put together three months after the passage of this law by the Ministry of Justice and in collaboration of Ministry of Welfare and Social Security and ratified by the Head of the Judiciary.

Note 1 – Counseling sessions will if possible be formed in the presence of individuals trusted by both parties and if possible their relatives.

Note 2 – all the disagreement and family disputes can be discussed in the conflict resolution councils. If both parties refer to such councils, the council will form in the presence of the relevant expert and the sentences issues, with the exception of divorce sentence, are executable. If the desire is to execute divorce sentence, then the case is referred to court.

 

Chapter Three: Marriage

Article 22 – Registering permanent marriage, annulment and its voiding, divorce, revocation and announcement of marriage annulment and divorce is mandatory.

Note – Registering temporary marriage is subject to a procedural code ratified by the Minister of Justice.

Article 22 – The judicial system of the Islamic Republic of Iran supports permanent marriage in order to strengthen and make pivotal the familial relations. Temporary marriage, however, is subject to the Sahri’a laws and regulations stated in the civil code and its registration is necessary in the cases below:

1-      Pregnancy of the wife;

2-      Agreement of the two sides;

3-      Conditions of the marriage.

Note – Registering the matters subject to this article and article 21 of this law in official registration offices for marriage and divorce is itself subject to a procedural code that will be issued within a year by the minister of Justice and approved by the head of the Judiciary. Until the issuance of that law, the regulations subject of article 1 of the Law of Marriage, ratified on May 19, 1937 are still valid and enforced.

Article 23 – Taking a second temporary wife is subject to permission from court after approval of the man’s financial ability and his guarantee for executing justice between his wives.

Note – In case of multiple marriages, if the mihriyyih is current and the first wife requests it, permission to register the second marriage is dependant upon payment of mihriyyih to the first wife.

Article 24 – Ministry of Health, Medical Care and Education is responsible to, within a month since the passage of this law, explicate and announce the diseases for which the couple has to be vaccinated before marriage and contagious and dangerous diseases for the couple and children resulting from the union. All the marriage offices are responsible to, before registering the marriage, request both parties to produce a documents issued by a physician and centers that the Ministry of Health, Medical Care and Education has announced to be qualified and archive them that testifies their lack of addiction to narcotics and contraction of the diseases that are subject of this law as well as vaccination.

Article 25 – Ministry of Economics and Finances is duty bound to tax excessively and uncommonly high mihriyyihs at the time of registering them in accordance to the situation of the couple and economic situation of the country and in compliance with the increase of the amount of mehriyyihbased on inflation. Acceptable amount of mihriyyih and the taxing of it accordingly will be with attention to the economic situation of the country and based on a circular suggested by the Ministry of Economic and Finances and approved by the cabinet.

 

Chapter Four – Divorce

Article 26 – Registering divorce and other methods of annulling a marriage in official offices will only be permitted after the certificate of having irreconcilable differences or the related verdict issued by court or the certificate of the Family counseling Center regarding stating the couple’s agreement on divorce has been issues.

Article 27 – In the case when the couple agrees on divorce they must refer their case to the Family Counseling Center. The Centers will, in addition to offering Counseling, strive to reconcile and dispense them from requesting divorce. If reconciliation is reached and divorce is dispensed, reconciliation note is devised; otherwise statement registering the agreement of the couple on divorce is issued, clearly stating the points of agreement.

Article 28 – If the divorce is basically by request of the man, petition for issuance of the note stating irreconcilable differences and if it is by request of the woman, depending of the case, petition for issuing an order for necessity of divorcing or reaching the conditions for exercising legal assistance in divorce will be submitted to the court.

Article 29 – In all the cases requesting divorce other than in case of agreement of both parties on divorce, the court is responsible to, while trying to create peace and reconciliation, refer the case for arbitration. Taking into account the opinions of the arbiters, the court will issue statement of irreconcilable differences or divorce verdict or if it disagrees with the opinion it will reject it providing reason.

Article 30 – After the issuance of order to refer the case for arbitration, each of the spouses must within a weeks time from the date of issuance, introduce one of their relatives who is at least 30 years old, married and has knowledge of Shri’a, family and social matters to court as arbiter.

Note 1 – People who are married but their wives have passed away can be accepted as arbiter.

Note 2 – Method of selecting and inviting the judges, their responsibilities and number of meetings will be in accordance with a procedural code that will be devised by Ministry of Justice and ratified by the Head of the Judiciary within three months from the date of the passage of this law.

Article 31 – If there was no qualified individual amongst the relatives or there was no access to such a person or the relatives refuse to accept to be the arbiter, each of the spouses can choose and introduce their arbiters from amongst other qualified individuals and if they refuse or are not able to introduce an arbiter, the court will, by request of the spouses or on its own, choose an arbiter from the qualified members of the Family Counseling Centers.

Article 32 – When issuing a divorce order or a note stating irreconcilable differences, the court will make decisions for the fate of the dowry, mihriyyih, alimony for the wife, children and carrying and manner of upkeep of the child and its cost and method of payment. Furthermore, the court will decide the time, manner and place of visitation with father, mother and other relatives, having in mind the emotional dependency and interest of the child. Registering divorce is dependant upon achieving the aforementioned rights, other than when the wife agrees or a definite order of insolvency or payment arrangement has been issued. In any case, if the wife agrees to be divorce without ensuring the aforementioned rights, she can request these rights through said court proceedings after the divorce is registered.

Note – Physician’s note regarding the presence or absence of a fetus must be submitted, unless the couple is in agreement that the fetus exists.

Article 33 – Statement noting irreconcilable differences is valid for three months from the date of its issuance or the date of court verdict to be submitted to the divorce office. If the aforementioned statement is not submitted within this time period or the person who submitted it to the divorce office does not appear in front of the office within three months time or does not submit the required documents, the statement will no longer be valid.

Note 1 – If the court verdict is appealable, the time noted int eh beginning of this article will be considered from the date of issuance of the appeal decision or the expiration of the appeal period.

Note 2 – Definite statement and executable decision will be issued by the court and handed over to the divorce office at the same time.

Note 3 – Processing the appeal to a divorce decision should not take more that six months.

Note 4 – If the wife marries after the divorce is issued, verdict can no longer be set forth for the annulment of the verdict based on which the divorce was issued.

Article 34 – The statement noting divorced agreed upon by both parties is also valid for three months from the date of its issuance by the Family Counseling Centers and will be executed with the presence of both parties.

Article 35 – If the husband appears in the divorce office at the designated time and submits the statements noting irreconcilable differences, if the wife does not appear within a week time, the notary public will give a warning to the couple to appear in the office to get divorced and register it. If the wife does not appear and does not announce a reason for it, the divorce is issued and registered and if an excuse is announced, another date is given in the manner explained. In case of wife’s absence, she will be informed of the matter by the notary office.

Article 36 – If the divorce verdict is submitted to the notary office by the wife, if the husband does not appear in front of the office within a week time, the notary public will give a warning to the couple to appear in the office to get divorced and register it. If the husband does not appear and does not announce a reason for it, the divorce is issued and registered and the husband is notified of it by the notary office. If an excuse is announced, another date is given in the manner explained.

Note – time between the issuance of the warning and the session in which divorce is issued stated in this article and the article before should not be less than a week.

Article 37 – divorce is issued, meeting all the Shari’a criteria’s in the official offices or any other place in the presence of the notary public or his representative.

Article 38 – in the revocation divorce, divorce is issued as prescribed by law and the matter is registered but issuing of the divorce is pending upon at least two witnesses testifying in writing that the divorced woman’s resided in the house she shares with her former husband until the end ofiddah, unless the wife agrees on the divorce registering. If revocation happens, the divorce registration is canceled and if it doesn’t happen the registration is completed and divorce is issued. The complete registration will be signed by the notary public, the couple or their representatives and two witnesses. If the wife so requests, a statement regarding the completion of divorce and the failure of revocation will be given to her.

 

Chapter Five: Custody and Upkeep of the Children

Article 39 – If the court decides that and agreement regarding the visitation, custody, up keeping and other matter related to the children are contrary to the children’s interest and welfare or in the cases where the person responsible for having custody refuses to do the duties prescribed to custody holders or prevents the visitation between the child he/she has custody of with those who have visitation rights, the court can make any decision that has the interest of the child in mind including transferring custody to someone else or appointing a supervisor with the prescribed scope of responsibilities and other such decisions.

Article 40 – A child cannot be taken out of his place of residence that was agreed upon by both parties, or his place of residence before the divorce took place or sent outside the country without the approval of his/her guardian, mother or the person who has custody and is responsible for upkeep of the child unless it is deemed by court to be within the interest and welfare of the child and within the scope of visitation rights by those who have such rights by.

Article 41 – If the governmental ministries and companies, and public or non governmental institutions and organs, have to hand over properties or announce a minor as owner of them, within the scope of providing for the ordinary living standard, such properties must be placed in the hands of the person who has the custody and is responsible for the upkeep of the minor, unless otherwise ordered by the court.

Article 42 – If the woman or other individuals who must be provided with alimony request it, the court will decide on the amount and manner of paying for aimony going forward.

Note – Regarding this article and other articles that require payment to be received from the losing party, one request for issuance of an execution order is enough and the required actions will continue so long as a new order has not been issued by the court.

Article 43 – Payment of wife’s alimony and making payment for the upkeep expenses and alimony of the child takes precedence over all other expenses.

 

Chapter Six: Criminal Regulations

Article 44 – If a man takes action for permanent marriage, divorce, annulment or revocation without registering it in the official books, he will be fined from fifty to one hundred thousand rials as well as subject to a social deprivation.

Note – The Judiciary is duty-bound to provide proper mechanisms to protect the expediency of the family and the child and provide visitations of the child with parents. Procedural code pertaining to this article will be prepared within six months by the Ministry of justice and approved by the head of the judiciary.

Article 45 – If a physician issues a statement contrary to the facts for the topics of article 23 of this law, he will be prevented from practicing medicine from three to five years.

Article 46 – Any foreign individual, who marries an Iranian woman without the permission that is the subject of article 1060 of the civil code, will be sentenced from ninety one days to one years’ imprisonment. In such case, if the woman married on her own free will and the guardian of the girl in case the marriage was not one of her own choosing as well as the person who married them will be tried as accessory to the aforementioned crime.

Article 47 – Any notary public who without having permission from the court registers a second marriage, or without court verdict or a statement noting irreconcilable differences or a confirmation verdict regarding sentenced issued in other countries or statements of the Family Counseling Centers regarding the agreement of the couple on divorce, chooses to register any of the reasons for dissolution of marriage will be subject to permanent dismissed from the position of notary public.

Article 48 – Anyone who has the custody of the child, if he/she refuses to carryout the responsibilities of having custody or prevent the visitation of the child with the person who has visitation rights will be fined between five hundred thousand to five million rials.

Article 49 – Anyone who denies being married it is proven that his denial was baseless, or anyone who contrary to the facts claims being married to another, will be sentenced between three months and a day and one years’ imprisonment or fined between ten to forty million rials. The same applies to their legal substitutes who denied the marriage while knowing its validity or claimed there was a marriage knowing there wasn’t one.

Article 50 – If a man marries a girl who has not reached the legal age of marriage that is contrary to article 1041 of the civil code, he will be sentenced from six months to two years’ imprisonment. If the marriage that is contrary to the aforementioned law results in dismemberment of permanent injuries to the wife, the husband will be sentence from two to five year’s imprisonment in addition to paying the blood money. If the marriage results in the death of the wife, he will be sentenced from five to ten year’s imprisonment in addition to paying the blood money.

Article 51 – The fines prescribed as punishment in this law will be increased according to the inflation index of the central bank every three years on an individual case basis with the suggestion of the Ministry of Justice and approval of the cabinet.

Article 52 – The executive procedural code for this law by the suggested of the Minister of Justice and approval of the Head of the Judiciary will be ratified by the cabinet.

Article 53 – From the date of this Law’s execution, the below laws and all other laws and regulations contrary to this law are abrogated:

1-      Law Regarding Marriage, passed 24/5/1310 [16 August 1931]

2-      Law Regarding Denial of Marriage, passed 20/12/1311 [11 March 1933]

3-      Law Necessitating Submitting a Physician’s Note Before Marriage, passed 14/9/1317 [5 December 1938]

4-      Law for Family Protection, passed 15/11/1353 [4 February 1375]

5-      Law of custody rights, passed 22/4/1365 [13 July 1386]

6-      Law to Enforce Vaccination against Tetanus for Ladies Before Marriage, passed 23/1/1367 [12 April 1388]

7-      Law for Reform of the Regulations Regarding Divorce, passed 21/12/1370 [11 March 1991]

8-      Law to Allocate a Number of Courts to Courts that are Subject of Article 21 of the Constitution, passed 8/5/1376 [30 July 1997]

9-      Law to Determine the Time Period for Statement Citing irreconcilable Differences, passed 11/8/1367 [2 November 1388]

10-  Article 645 and 646 of the Islamic Penal Code, passed 2/3/1375 [22 May 1996].

 

Added articles:

Article 1 – Those under the protection of Imam Khomeini’s Aide Committee will be exempt from paying court fees.

Article 2 – With the approval of the court, husband can prevent his wife from taking any jobs that are against the interests of the family or the respect of the wife. The wife can also request a similar matter from the court. If doing so does not cause interruptions in the livelihood of the family, the court will prevent the husband from continuing at the job.

Article 3 – Taking anger [caused by the proceeding] and the interest of the children into account is enforced in all decisions made by the courts of executive officials.

Article 4- presence of children under the age of 15 in proceedings related to the family disputes are forbidden, other than in necessary cases and with court permission.

 

Chapter 6 – Salary and Pension

Article 5 – the amount and manner of distribution of the salary of a deceased to his permanent wife and children and other legal inheriting parties will be as followed in all the retirement treasuries of the country, military and social welfare and other:

1- Permanent wife of the deceased will receive the salary or pension of the deceased and her marriage after that will not discontinue the receipt of the money. In case of her new husband’s death and receipt of his salary or pension, the highest amount will be given to the wife.

2-  Receiving the salary, disability or pension by the wife will not interfere with receiving of the salary or pension of the deceased by her.

3-  Daughters who are unmarried and have no jobs and sons who are either under the age of 20 or older but engaged in university studies will receive children aide, insurance and pension or their parents’ salary (whichever applies).

4-  Salary or pension of the wife or children or other legal inheriting parties will be paid and distributed to the working or retired employees as stated in article 87 of the Law of Employment of Iran, ratified in 1966, and its amendments as well as article 86 of the same Law and its amendments.