FAQ's on the Personal Law Campaign in Canada
a Compendium of Questions from an earlier interview

click links for answers

1.What is meant by Muslim Personal/Family Law?

2. Whom are you trying to reach with your Personal/Family Law (PFL) campaign? Is it directed toward both Muslims and non-Muslims?

3.Why do you call this the Muslim Personal/Family Law campaign (PFL) and what is its history? When did this campaign begin?

4. Why are you confining your PFL campaign to family issues rather than other aspects of the Shariah?

5. Why is the PFL so important for Muslims? Why do Muslims need it?

6. Why is Muslim PFL important to all Canadians, be they Muslim or non-Muslim? Why should Canada adopt it?

7. But how can a separate system of law like Muslim PFL coexist with current Canadian Law

8. What changes are necessary to Canadian law to adapt to this?

9. Will this be very cost-effective? How will it benefit both the Muslim community and the Canadian system?

10.As an Islamic alternative to Canadian adoption, can a Muslim living in Canada become a guardian of a child according to Muslim Law?

11.Can a Muslim living in Canada get a divorce according to Muslim Law?

12.If a Muslim living in Canada should pass away without leaving a Will, would his or her matters of inheritance be dealt with according to Muslim Law?

13. If a Muslim living in Ontario should, through disease, accident or old age, become mentally incapable of looking after his or her affairs, would the Ontario government give his or her family that responsibility and conduct the affairs of the incapacitated person in accordance with Muslim PFL?

14.What about the situation where a legally incapacitated Muslim living in Ontario does not leave a Living Will? Would the needed decisions be made in accordance with Muslim Law?

15.What significance does this have for the Muslim community?

16.What can be done about this situation? What practical steps can be taken by individuals and Muslims as a group toward achieving this goal?

17.What is the difference between mediation and arbitration? Which best suits a Muslim's needs?

18. Would it be obligatory for all Canadian Muslims to accede to PFL requirements if the Muslim PFL were accommodated by way of adaptation or inclusion in some form or the other into the Canadian judicial system?

19.What if both parties cannot agree to be governed by PFL-- say, in a divorce between a Muslim male and a Christian female?

20.What criteria, then, would one have to meet to qualify for governance by PFL?

21.Who will form this arbitration board, a panel or an individual, and what sort of qualifications and experience will they hold?

22. It is very easy to see how an arbitrator would be very useful in cases of divorce. What about cases of (a) adoption, (b) marriage, (c) inheritance and wills, and (d) substitute decisions (i.e., powers of attorney), etc.?

23.How will arbitration be enforced? Will there be checks and balances? For example, what if a person decides to opt out of arbitration after initially agreeing to it because of his feeling that he would get a more profitable decision through Canadian courts-- say, in a divorce case?

24.How much authority will they have? Will their recommendations be binding?

25. Who will pay for this?

26. There are different schools of Muslim Law. How would your proposed Muslim arbitration board reconcile them?

27. Do you think your campaign is realistic?

28.Polygamy is a divisive issue between non-Muslims and Muslims. Where do you stand on this issue?

29. What sort of resistance are you encountering from non-Muslims and Muslims?