Secondary Sources of Islamic laws || Islamic Legal System

Secondary Sources of Islamic laws

Secondary Sources of Islamic laws are not basic sources of Muslim law but the supplementary sources of Muslim law. 

Secondary Sources of Islamic laws | Islamic Legal System

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The secondary sources of Muslim law are:

  1. Urf or Custom
  2. Judicial decision
  3. Legislation
  4. Equity, Justice, & Good conscience

Urf or Custom

Before the emergence of Islam in Arabia , customs were the basis of entire social life, religion,morality trade and commerce. Custom has not been recognized as a source of law in a Muslim law. However, it cannot be denied that custom has always been given a place under Muslim law, if it is in conformity with Muslim law. For example, The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم ) never repeal the whole of the pre-Islamic customary law of Arabia.

Judicial Decision

These includes the decisions of the supreme court & high court of a Muslim countries, Judges explain what law is. These decisions are regarded as precedents for future cases.


In different countries , Muslims are also governed by the various legislation passed either by the parliament or by state legislature. The following are the examples of legislation in India.

  1. The usurious loans act, 1918
  2. Religious toleration act
  3. Freedom of religion act, 1850
  4. The mussalman wakf validating act, 1930
  5. The shariat act, 1937
  6. Dissolution of Muslim marriage act, 1939

Justice, equity and good conscience

The doctrine of equity, justice & good conscience is regarded as one of the source of Muslim law. Abu Hanifa, the founder of hanafi sect of Sunni, expounded  the principle that rule of law based on analogy could be set aside at the option of the judge on a liberal construction or juristic preference to meet the requirements of a particular case. These principles of Muslim law are known as Istihsan or juristic equity. Istihsan literally means approbation and may be translated as liberal construction or juristic preference.

Legal System



Primary Sources


Legal System

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