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Ownership without transferral

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Nasihah (Advice): Usurping land


Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam said: “Whoever usurps someone’s land unjustly, his neck will be encircled with it down the seven earths (the earth will swallow him).”(Bukhari)




Question and Answer:


  1. My brother gifted his flat to me in his lifetime. I was also staying in the flat. I only transferred the flat onto my time after my brother’s demise. Does the flat belong to me or does it form part of his estate?


(Question published as received)



  1. If

(a) your brother gifted his flat to you,

(b) you accepted such a gift,

(c) you had complete control over the entire flat,

(d) you were solely responsible in respect of all liabilities related to the flat, and

(e) you were given the free will to  do with the flat as you wished,

then you are considered the owner of the flat. (Shaami)


Accordingly, the flat did not form part of your brother’s estate. The fact that the formal transfer of the flat onto your name only took place after your brother’s demise will not affect your ownership of the flat.


We strongly advise that in future such matters be written down and witnessed so as not to create confusion and disputes.


And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best


Mufti Ismaeel Bassa



Mufti Ebrahim Desai

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