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Can a person give Sadaqah while in Debt?


Nasihah (Advice): Do not delay the repayment of a debt


Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah Radhiyallahu Anhu reported that Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam said, “It is oppression for one with wealth to delay repayment of his debt.” [Sahih Bukhari]



Question and Answer:


  1. I have started work recently. I have debts from my past years BUT Insha Allah I wish to give sadaqah from my new salary? Is this allowed? Is it a sin for me to give sadaqah whilst I have debts? I do have a plan to catch up on my debts, BUT I want to give sadaqah instead of wasting it elsewhere.


(Question published as received) 


  1. A. 1) While you have debts on your head which are due immediately, any surplus must be used to pay your debts. In this case, it is not permitted to give money in Sadaqah.


This is because payment of your debt is compulsory while Sadaqah is optional and it is not permitted to neglect one’s obligations in favour of what is optional.

2) If the debt is on terms and the said terms are met, then one may give money in Sadaqah. However, it is preferable to hasten the payment of any debts due.

And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

Mufti Moosa Salie


Mufti Taahir Hansa

(The answer hereby given is specifically based on the question asked and should be read together with the question asked. Islamic rulings on this Q&A newsletter are answered in accordance to the Hanafi Fiqh unless otherwise stated.) 

Fatwa Department
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Email: fatwa@jamiat.org.za
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