Rules and Ratio of Zakat In Islam

Zakat is the purification of maal (wealth). It is to be paid once in a year i.e. at the end of a calendar year when at the end we are left with any possessions on which zakat can be counted. There is a question about zakat payment. People often forget their poor neighbors and poor relatives while paying zakat and pay it to the distant NGOs or to any organization. There are certain rules devised in shariah about payment of zakat and who deserve to get it first.

Here, one important thing should be noted that taking zakat is not an insult, rather zakat is that purest part of the money that is taken and given in the name of Allah SWT as an obligation.

1. Zakat cannot be given to a person who owns 85 gram of gold or 595 gram of silver or the equivalent wealth. A person who owns household items like carpets and utensils, etc that are under possession and are not being used, then these items come under the accumulation of wealth then such a person does not deserve zakat. Even if given zakat, that will serve the obligation.

2. Zakat cannot be given to non-muslims.

3. Zakat cannot be given to mother, father, maternal and paternal grandparents, or great grandparents, to offsprings, to grand or great-grandchildren, husband to wife or wife to husband. Other than them, zakat can be given to other relatives, such as brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces, nephews, etc.

4. Zakat cannot be given to sayyids, i.e. to the descendants of Prophet Muhammad SAW from His daughter Fatima RA and His uncle Abbas. But only the genuine sayyid, and not every person is sayyid who claims to be so.

5. Zakat cannot be given as payment of services.

6. Zakat cannot be paid for the building, repairing or renovation of mosques because a mosque is a worship place and called the place of Allah SWT.

7. A person cannot use zakat for burial and such expenses but if the heirs of the dead as poor, they can take zakat and can use it for the same purpose.

8. Zakat money cannot be used to pay the outstanding debts of a person who died. If paid, such action will be considered invalid.

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Author: Abu Tariq Abu Tariq Muhsin is a zakat officer for Zakat Centre of Federal Territory of Malaysia. A writer, researcher and publisher of various writing focusing on Zakat & Islamic studies.

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