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One of the other important economical responsibilities of Muslims is the paying of Zakat.

As for the importance of Zakat, it suffices to point out that in the Glorious Qur'an, after the mentioning of Salat, Zakat is mentioned. Paying Zakat is also counted as one of the signs of faith and righteous actions.

In countless hadith from the Ma¥umin (‘a), it has been narrated that: “One who does not pay Zakat, is out of the religion of Islam.”

Zakat, just like Khums, has its own specific instances. One part of Zakat is a tax on the body and life, that once a year, those people who have the ability to pay this tax (from the view point of property), it becomes Wajib on them on the day of ‘Eid al-Fitr. The rules related to this type of Zakat were explained at the end of the section on Fasting.

The other division of Zakat is the Zakat on wealth, but this does not mean that it is necessary or includes all the property of a person - rather Zakat is only Wajib on nine things.

Issue 390: Things that Zakat is Wajib to be paid on are the following:

Wheat, barley, dates, raisins, camels, cows, goats, gold and silver.

Issue 391: Zakat becomes Wajib in the event that the item that Zakat must be paid on reaches a certain quantity. These amounts have been given in the following table:

Type of Property Amount Amount of Zakat That must be Paid
1 Wheat Approximately 847.207  1/10 in the event that the crops were irrigated with rain water and water from a river.
2 Barley Kilograms  1/20 in the event that the crops were irrigated by hand watering, or by a jug, or by a water pump.
3 Dates One camel  3/40 in the event that the crops were irrigated by both methods.
4 Raisins Up to 25 camels  One sheep
5 Camels 26 or more camels  One sheep for every 5 camels
6 Cows 30 cows  One camel

One, one year old cow that has just entered into its second year.

7 Sheep 40 Sheep One Sheep
8 Gold 15 Mithqal 1/40
9 Silver 105 Mithqal 1/40

A brief note:

Camels, cows and sheep also have other quantities (that Zakat becomes Wajib on), and for a complete listing of these rules, one can refer to the Tawdhiul Masail, rules 1918-1932.

The Rules of Zakat

Issue 392: If for a complete year, the animals graze from the grass of the wilderness, then Zakat will become Wajib on these animals. Therefore, if during the year, or for a part of the year, the grass that is picked or that, which is cultivated, is eaten, then Zakat will not be paid on these animals.

Issue 393: The Zakat of gold and silver becomes Wajib in the event that the amount reaches one Sikke - that which one can do business with. Therefore, the amount women possess and use these days does not have any Zakat liable on it.

Issue 394: Paying the Zakat is one of the acts of worship and must be given with the intention of Zakat and with the Niyyat of being paid for the pleasure of Allah (SWT).

The Disposal of Zakat

Issue 395: There are eight ways in which the Zakat can be disposed of; and one can dispose of one’s Zakat in all or some of these ways. The following are some of the examples of these places:

• It can be given to the poor and destitute.

• It can be given to those non-Muslims who, if Zakat is given to them, may become inclined to Islam or they may help Muslims in the time of war.

• It may be spent in the way of Allah; meaning, in those things that have a common benefit for the Muslims or a benefit for Islam - for example, building a well, bridge or Masjid1

  • 1. For more information on the uses of zakat, one can refer to the Tawzhiul Masa’il, rule number 1933.