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Detroit – A court says a Detroit-area man must pay his former wife $50,000 under the terms of their Islamic marriage certificate.

The man argued that a Wayne County judge exceeded her authority by trying to resolve a religious issue in a divorce. But the Michigan appeals court says Judge Melissa Cox simply applied common law regarding contracts.

The court this week says Cox used “neutral principles.”

The $50,000 payment is called a “mahr” in the Islamic faith. The appeals court says it’s a gift of money or property made by a man in marriage. The decision sets a precedent for Michigan judges.

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