Iran's inheritance laws perpetuate the unequal status of women. If a parent dies, sons receive a share of the inheritance that is twice the amount received by daughters. If a woman's husband dies, she only receives from one-eighth to one-quarter of her husband's inheritance. If the marriage produced children, the bulk of the inheritance goes to them; if there were no children, the bulk of the inheritance goes to the state ("Status" 67).
Women are only allowed to work in Iran under certain conditions. As mentioned above, female teachers are employed in sexually segregated schools. Married women can work as long as their husbands give written permission. A greater number of Iranian women are employed at present, more from economic necessity than by any liberalization of laws: "the economic crisis in Iran has prompted many women to find employment outside the home" (Lindsey 152). The Iranian constitution states that any person is free to choose the occupation that suits him or her, yet a married man can stop his wife from working even after she is employed.
As oppressive as Iran's marriage laws are, its divorce and custody laws are even more unfair to women. Until recently, a man could obtain a divorce automatically while paying a nominal amount of alimony ("Our Veils" 27). Even with the relative liberalization of divorce laws, women still have virtually no rights. The father automatically gets legal custody of male children after the age of two and female children after the age of seven. If a woman remarries before her children reach these respective ages, custody reverts to the father. Abused women cannot divorce their husbands because the subject of spousal abuse is not covered in Iranian civil law: "Survivors of domestic violence have no recourse in the courts, and no support for leaving a violent husband" ("Status" 67).