Q&A (Fatwa)

#1029: I Am Tasked With Distributing Zakaat Money, Can I Take More Than A Share For Myself If I Am In Need?

“Assalām alaykumu warahmatullāh wabarakātuh. May Allāh reward the Mallams attending to our question. My question is this: I am always tasked to submit names of people that should be given Zakatul Mal, which I always include my name because I am also in need. I am also task with distributing the money to these people including myself but the my share is always not enough for me. Can I submit say 50 name and when I’m giving the money I give to only 30 people and keep that of 20 people for myself because of my needs. Is this act haram and is eating that money also haram. Jazakallahu Khayran”


Wa Alaykum Salam Warahmatullah Wabarakaatuh.

Amin, and may Allah answer your prayers.

Know O beloved brother that there are 8 people who have been sanctioned by Allah to be given the Zakaat collected and it is not permissible, by the consensus of the Fuqahaa and Ulamaa of Islam throughout our history to give the Zakaat money to anyone or anything other than these 8.

They are the Faqir poor, the Miskin needy, the Workers on the Zakaat (the Collectors), those whose hearts are being reconciled, in freeing a slave, to assist the bankrupt, on the Path of Jihaad and for the Stringent Traveller.

But know, my brother, that it is not permissible for you to take of the Zakaat money in the name of being in need here or in the name of you being among the workers who collect and distribute it here.

The reason is that the giver of the Zakaat entrusted you with it. You are therefore a representative of the giver to give the poor and the needy. It is therefore not permissible for you to take of it.

The difference with the Collectors of Zakaat mentioned in the Verse referred is that in the case of the verse referred, the Collector of Zakaat derived his authority to give from the Sultan or leader of the Muslims whose responsibility it is to collect and to share, such a collector therefore takes that responsibility by virtue of his representation.

As for your case, your authority over the Zakaat derives from the giver whose responsibility is to give not to collect and distribute.

The Shar’i Precept says that the one who represents has only the roles and responsibilities of the one who he represents. Can’t you see that the giver of the Zakaat is not entitled to collect?

In that case, you are not also entitled because you are his representative. This should be clear.

If it is said: but I am in need.

I say: if you are in need, you should let the giver know and let him give you what he deems fit is a share due to you for the Zakaat. It is not permissible for you to, of your own, take of it because you feel you are qualified to take.

If you say: the people I give it to are not more deserving than myself.

I say: this sort of arguments don’t hold water in the Shariah.

It is either you are entitled to be given in which case people who are less than you on the poverty ladder are more entitled. Or you are not entitled and those who are above you are much more not entitled. Then, your entitlement or non entitlement has nothing to do with this ruling. What has to do with this Ruling is your role as a representative of the Giver(s).

As long as you represent them, you must not take a dime from it. This is the ruling of the Shariah on this matter.

As we have stated, if you think you are entitled, get it directly from the givers and make it known that you are entitled and in need. Don’t collect for the purpose of Distributing and then spend it upon yourself. That is treachery in accordance with the Position of the Shariah and very abhorrent.

We ASK Allah for guidance.

Please repent and desist from that and ask Allah to straighten out for you your situation.

Barakallahu Fikum
Jazakumullahu Khayran

Abū Asim

13th Shawwāl, 1441AH.

📚 IslāmNode


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