Ask Imaam

What is the verdict of the Learned Scholars of the Sacred Sharah regarding the following issue upon whom is Sadaqat al-Fitr wjib (necessary) and at what age does it become necessary?

In the name of Allah al-Rahman al-Rahim

Sadaqat al-Fitr is compulsory upon every free Muslim who possesses wealth which reaches the nisab amount [threshold amount value of 612.36 grammes of Silver or 87.48 grams of Gold] and the condition of the person being mature as in Zakah is not applicable here, just as it is stated in al-Durr al-Mukhtar:

“Sadaqat al-Fitr is compulsory upon every free Muslim who possesses the nisab amount surplus to his basic needs.”

[al-Durr al-Mukhtar Kitab al-Zakah, Chapter Sadaqat al-Fitr Vol 3 Pg. 323-325]

Allamah ibn Abidin al-Shami (may Allah cover him in mercy) states beneath this:

“According to the statement of Sayyiduna Imam A’zham Abu Hanifah and Sayyiduna Imam Qadi Yusuf (may Allah cover both of them him in His Mercy) neither sanity nor reaching the age of legal maturity (bulugh) are necessary conditions such that Sadaqat al-Fitr is also compulsory upon a minor and an insane person, when they have wealth, so their guardian will extract it from their wealth [on their behalf].”

[al-Durr al-Mukhtar with Radd al-Mukhtar Kitab al-Zakah Chapter Sadaqat al-Fitr Vol 3 Pg. 325]

From this it is understood that if the minor or the insane person has wealth then their guardian will extract Sadaqat-ul-Fitr from their [the minor or insane person’s] wealth and if the minor or the insane person does not possess wealth the obligation of paying Sadaqah al-Fitr is upon their guardian (Father, and if he is not alive then the Grandfather), just as it is stated in al-Durr al-Mukhtar:

“If they are poor then it is not wajib (compulsory) upon them but upon their guardian.”

[al-Durr al-Mukhtar Kitab al-Zakah, Chapter Sadaqat al-Fitr Vol 3 Pg. 325]

Similarly, it is stated in Bahar-e-Shari’at that it is wajib (compulsory) upon a man who possesses the nisab amount to pay Sadaqat al-Fitr on his behalf and on behalf of his minor children, when the children are not themselves possessing the nisab amount, otherwise the Sadaqat al-Fitr will be paid from the children’s wealth. As for insane children, even if they are of the age of legal maturity, but are not wealthy, then it will become wajib (compulsory) upon their father or guardian to pay Sadaqat al-Fitr, and if they are wealthy then Sadaqat al-Fitr will be paid from their wealth. Whether the insanity is original i.e. the child became mature in this condition or the child became insane after maturity, the same ruling applies upon both.

[Bahar-e-Shari’at Vol 1 Pg. 5, Sadaqat al-Fitr Rule No 7 Pg. 932]

 

Answered by Mufti Qasim Zia al-Qadri