Malik ibn Anas, the founder of the Maliki school of Sunni Islam, wrote Al-Muwatta and Al-Mudawana, the first collection of sayings of the prophet of Islam, Muhammad, his family, his companions, and also reflections of Imam Malik bin Anas, which were collected and published by the imam with commentary. Al-Mudawana largely consisted of family law, regulating marriage, inheritance, and child custody. Tamara Sonn, professor of religion and humanities at the College of William and Mary commends Morocco's code for the abolishment of the patriarchal family and diction respecting women.
Couples have to go to a secular court to obtain a divorce rather than just getting a letter of repudiation from a religious official. (See Islamic marital jurisprudence). The parent who keeps custody of the children also keeps the house. The legal age of marriage is 18 instead of 15. Sexual harassment is an offense punished by law. The Mudawana, which was passed by a majority of the members of the Moroccan parliament, has granted women more power. The revision has angered some fundamentalists.
Polygamy, while still allowed, became more difficult under the new Mudawana in 2003. It must be authorized specifically by a judge, and only if:
A woman has the right to stipulate a condition in the marriage contract by which her husband will refrain from taking another wife.
The Parliament attempted to revise the code several times in the first few years following its establishment, most notably granting women the right to divorce. Parliament revised the code in February 2004, given royal assent by King Mohammed VI, Morocco's supreme religious leader and head of state.
King Mohammed VI publicly endorsed amending the code to offer citizenship to the children of Moroccan mothers and foreign fathers in his State of the Nation Address on July 30, 2005. Article 6 of Morocco's 1958 Citizenship Act previously limited citizenship to children born of Moroccan fathers. Exceptions to this rule are children of fathers whose citizenship is unknown or non-existent, or in cases in which the child is between the ages of 16 and 18 and his legal status as a Moroccan is not challenged by the Justice Minister. The King also has the right to grant citizenship to anyone on a case-by-case basis. A modification of the law was submitted for vote in the Moroccan parliament.