Fatwa ID: 05264
Answered by: Mufti Muhammad Adnan
1- Can we give zakat to hospitals (cancer hospitals for the poor only)?
2- Can we give zakat to a widow who has a home but no source of income?
3- Can we give zakat to a madrassah where children read and learn Quran?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Allah states in the Holy Quran, “The alms are only for the poor and the needy, and those who collect them, and those whose hearts are to be reconciled, and to free the captives and the debtors, and for the cause of Allah, and (for) the wayfarers; a duty imposed by Allah. Allah is knower, Wise.” (Surah Tawba v.60)
In order for the zakat to be valid, the giver of zakat must transfer complete ownership of the wealth to the one who is eligible to receive it. In this specific scenario where the zakat money is used to purchase medical equipment, the poor patients do not become owners of the wealth nor the equipment. Merely treating a patient by means of medical equipment, which was purchased with zakat funds, does not entail him becoming the owner of it. Hence, if zakat wealth was used to purchase medical equipment, and the ownership of the equipment was not transferred to the one who was entitled to receive it, then the zakat will be invalid and must be discharged again, in the correct manner, i.e. making someone who is deserving of it, the owner. (Al-Fiqhul Hanafi Wa Adillatuhu: v. 1, p. 332 (Waheedi Kutub Khana)
It is because of the condition of Tamleek that zakat money cannot be used to establish Masajids and run charitable organizations like schools and hospitals. There is no doubt that the benefit of such projects does reach the poor, but the fact that these things have not passed on into their possession as owners make zakat invalid. However, in orphanages where meals and clothes are given to orphans as being owned by them, then, it is permissible to give zakat funds to the collectors of these orphanages. (Maariful Qur’an p.416 v.4)
One point I would like to highlight is that collectors of zakat are your representatives, therefore, if these representatives did not give the zakat to the rightful recipients who have been mentioned above in the verse, your zakat would not be fulfilled. It is imperative we give our zakats to collectors we trust and have reliance on in distributing our zakat. (Ahsanul Fatawa p.289 v.4)
Only Allah Knows Best
Written by Mufti Muhammad Adnan
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham