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Do I have to own an asset for a whole year before paying Zakaat?

Nasihah (Advice): Zakaat on Trading Stock


Sayyiduna Samurah Bin Jundub Radhiyallahu Anhu reports: “Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam ordered us to pay the Sadaqah (Zakaat) on whatever (stock) we intended for trade.” (Abu Dawood)


Question and Answer:

  1. Aslm. I am confused about something regarding my zakaat.

Say for purpose of explanation, I receive R20 September 2017. I work out my yearly zakaat in May every year thus working it out May 2018. I did not have the R20 for an entire year thus zakaat is not due on it (correct?) because I only had it for 8 months.

So do I start paying zakaat on this in may 2019 when I work out my zakaat and do I work out for one year or for 1 year and 8 months because of receiving it in October of 2017? Or do I have to pay zakaat on this in October 2018 as that will be the one year mark of me having this?


(Question published as received)


  1. Wa Alaykumus Salaam Wa Rahmatullaahi Wa Barakaatuhu

Your understanding of Zakaat calculation is not correct. Whatever Zakaatable assets you hold on the day of your Zakaat calculation are Zakaatable whether they are in your possession for one year or less. Kindly refer to the article below for further explanation.

What is Hawlaanul Hawl?

In Arabic there is a terminology that occurs commonly when discussing Zakaat. This terminology, Hawlaanul Hawl, literally means the passing of a year. In the context of Zakaat, it refers to wealth being in a person’s possession for the duration of an entire lunar year.

In our experience, this terminology is perhaps the most misunderstood concept when it comes to Zakaat calculation. Many people, based on the incorrect understanding of this concept, believe that wealth attained during the course of the year will not be Zakaatable unless one entire year passes with that wealth in one’s possession.

An example to illustrate this is, Abdullah pays his Zakaat every year on the 10th of Ramadaan (which fell on 27 June in the year 2015). In January 2015, Abdullah received a lump sum of R150 000.00 from a deceased relative’s estate. When Abdullah calculated his Zakaat on the 27th of June 2015, he excluded the R150 000.00, which he had saved, as according to his understanding, that amount was not Zakaatable. Abdullah’s understanding is incorrect.

Hawlaanul Hawl merely means that a person should have excess wealth that is more than the Zakaat Nisaab for the entire year. If this is found, then all wealth that accumulates during the year will be added to one’s Zakaatable assets and Zakaat will have to be paid on it. Therefore, as Abdullah was already paying Zakaat, he will add the R150 000.00 in to his Zakaat calculation and pay Zakaat on that amount as well.

This ruling applies to all monies received prior to the date of one’s Zakaat calculation as well as monies received on the day one calculates his Zakaat.

In essence, one will pay Zakaat on all money that one possesses on day of Zakaat calculation, irrespective of when that money was received.

Simply put, the Zakaatable amount is whatever amount you have on the day which you calculate Zakaat.

And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

Mufti Moosa Salie


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