Are Service Charges Considered To Be Part of the Zakat

CategoriesZakah [204]

Fatwa ID: 05442

 

Answered by: Maulana Mohammed Haroon Hussain

 

Question:

 

Assalaamu Alaikum. In our country, all electronic payments incur a 2% government tax. This is besides the service charges (commission) of the bank or mobile company. So, if I pay my zakaah to an organization, when they pay onwards to a recipient or purchase goods etc, they will be charged this 2% tax AND also bank service charges. Will I be short in my zakaah obligation to the equivalent of these charges?

 

 

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

 

Answer:

 

Firstly, one should endeavor to give zakaah to those who are eligible in one’s vicinity. The concept of paying organizations to dispense of our obligation has become a common situation in our times. These organizations were started with the intention of providing relief to poorer countries and the thought was that when there are no eligible people in our locality or family members, we can send the money outside the country we live in into another place. This is meant to be seen as an alternative and due to necessity. Nowadays, there are people in our own localities who are also eligible for zakaah. It is always better for a person to give money to the poor people that he knows and that are closer to him.

 

Secondly, the cost of getting the money to the poor will need to be extra on top of the amount of zakaah. Giving the obligatory amount of zakaah to the poor is fardh. The onus is upon us to make sure any delivery charges and service charges etc are paid for on top, as they are a service provided to us for delivering our goods to the destination. Our duty is to grant full ownership of the amount of zakaah due upon us[1], to a poor person who is in need of it.

 

So, in conclusion, when calculating your zakaah, you should allow for the extra 2% and pay extra. This way, you can ensure that the stipulated amount will reach the poor. As I mentioned, if a person does not wish to fall into giving extra towards charges, then he can pay cash to the poor people in his own vicinity with his own hands.

 

 

Only Allah knows best

Written by Maulana Mohammed Haroon Hussain

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

 

 

[1] فهي تمليك المال من فقير مسلم غير هاشمي ولا مولاه بشرط قطع المنفعة عن المملك من كل وجه لله تعالى

ص 188 – جلد 1 – الفتاوى الهندية – كتاب الزكاة – الباب الأول في تفسيرها وصفتها وشرائطها

 

 

 

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