Fatwa: # 16981
Category: Charity, Obligatory (Zakaat)
Country: United Kingdom
Date: 4th August 2008

Title

How much money do you need in possession, in order to give Zakat?

Question

Q3)my friend has had some money in his possession for quite along time and I think Zakat was due from him. Now he has realised what a great mistake and sin he has committed. So he wants to give the compensation for it. He used to receive a yearly bank statement (from september to august) each year.
Q3 a) Is it possible to calculate the Zakat to give, from september to august each year?
Q3 b) How much money do you need in possession, in order to give Zakat?

Answer

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

1.      The bank statements are issued according to the solar calendar consisting of 365 days. Zakāh is payable in accordance to the lunar years which generally falls between 353 – 356 days per year. Your friend should ascertain when he became liable to pay Zakāh by calculating one lunar year after the first day he reached the Nisāb of Zakāh. He should pay Zakāh for every successive year thereafter for which he did not discharge his Zakāh. For example, assuming he became liable for Zakāh by possessing the Nisāb for Zakāh on March 1, 2005; assuming he maintained the amount of Nisāb at the termination of that lunar year as well, he will pay Zakāh of 2.5% for that year. If possible, he should attempt to ascertain the Islamic date for March 1, 2005 through conversion tables or software available on the internet. The above-mentioned date converts to Muharram 20, 1426 according to the following web-site http://www.rabiah.com/convert/. If this is difficult, he can base his calculation on the least amount of days in a lunar year for every year and base his calculations on that. After completion of the first year’s Zakāh he can proceed to calculate the second and each successive year’s Zakāh thereafter accordingly.

2.      The minimum amount of money (Nisāb) that a person must possess before Zakāh becomes binding is based upon a gold and silver standard. The Nisāb for gold is 20 Mithqals (87.479 g) and the Nisāb for silver is 200 Dirhams (612.35 g). If any currency equal to the value of any of these two amounts is reached, then Zakāh will become binding so long as that amount is over and above one’s basic expenses and debts. All debts and liabilities will be deducted from his wealth before calculating his estate. Only that particular year’s liabilities will be deducted from long-term debts such as car / home financing. Loans extended to others and any other receivables to one’s estate will be accounted for even if the person is not paid by his debtor for several years. Any gold or silver items such as jewelry, ornaments etc will also form part of Zakatable assets as long as the percentage of gold or silver in the item is more than the metal alloy with which it is amalgamated. Similarly, any items purchased for trade will be subject to Zakat and must be accounted for in the calculation. A person should add his / her cash savings, values of gold and/or silver, value of the merchandise of trade and any receivables from debts etc. Thereafter, he / she should deduct the amount of debts owed to others. If the value of the net total equals the Nisāb of gold or silver, he / she will have to pay 2.5% of the amount in Zakāh.

And Allah knows best

Wassalam

Ml. Yusuf bin Yaqub,
Student Darul Iftaa

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa

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