Divorce child custody
For illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Pexels | Mikhail Nilov


I am a non-Muslim woman married to a Muslim man. Two years ago, I got divorced, given custody of my children (two boys and a girl), a monthly amount for custody and child support. I am now Muslim. Do I have the right, according to the Personal Status Law, to file a lawsuit to modify the period of custody? Do I also have the right to demand an increase in alimony, knowing that my ex-husband’s salary increased two months ago? Please advise.


I would advise the questioner the following: You have the right to request to modify the period of custody. The judgment you were granted, based on Article 145 of the personal status law, states that.

“Should the fosterer be a mother of a different religion than that of the fostered child, her fosterage shall be forfeited unless the judge deems otherwise in the interest of the fostered child provided the period of fosterage ends upon his completing the age of five whether he child is a boy or a girl.”

As a general rule, the right of women to fosterage of a child, according to Article 156 of the Personal Status law, shall end upon his reaching the age of eleven years, if a male, and thirteen years, if a female, unless the court deems that extending this age to the age of maturity, for the male, and up to her marriage, for the female, is in his/her best interest.

Which means that you have the right to request to modify the custody age in all cases, leaving the matter to the court to decide according to the interest of the fostered child.

You have the right to request an increased alimony according to Article 64 of the same law, but the burden of proof that your ex-husband’s salary has increased relies on you.

The mentioned Article states that :

“Alimony may be increased or reduced according to the change of circumstances. Save in exceptional circumstances the action in increment or reduction of the alimony may not be heard prior to the lapse of one year as of the date of deciding it. The increase or decrease of alimony is computed from the date of claim in court.”