Zakaat al maal and Zakaat al-fitr.

Zakaat is one of the pillars of Islam, without which your Islam is incomplete.!, So, May I ask that you take the pain in coming along with me as we dwell into the basics of Zakaat.??????.
hmmmn, it might interest you to know for a start, that Zakaat has nothing to do with your age; a one year old can be rich enough to pay it. How about the thought that you, and yes you, or someone you know is so much in debt,(Zakaat debt -:D) for all d years of non- payment or probably for the lack of the knowledge of how to pay it or whom to pay it to, and on what it is due..

Did I lose someone along the way??
Eh!, sorry..
Zakaat means alms giving. It is some form of tax paid by the rich to the poor as ordained by Allah(God).

There are two types of Zakaat- Zakaat al maal and Zakaat al fitr.

                                                                        Zakaat al maal
This is the most common form of Zakaat and the word Zakaat is usually used to mean Zakaat al maal.
Why should we pay it?
-It is an injunction by Allah and anyone who does it would be rewarded and anyone who is to pay it but doesn’t is punished.
-It ensures a wide distribution of wealth.
-It strengthens the bond of love between the rich and the poor. You would agree with me that we are naturally drawn to people who offer us help, are generous or just niceeeeee. 🙂
-It brings increase and blessings to one’s wealth.
– Allah wipes away one’s minor sins.
-It purifies one’s wealth
-it builds in us sympathy for others and helps us get more inclined towards being generous.

Zakaat al maal is due on-

  • Farm produce such as grains and fruits produced by the earth
  • Gold and silver(whether they are worn , kept or are for rent or sale). Money or paper currency is under this category as explained by scholars.
  • Animals, such as cattle which feed freely from the earth
  • Commercial commodities (including land for sale, buildings for sale, the rent obtained from a house, cars for sale or the money made from their rent or hire, machines for any kind of money making business and any other thing owned for the purpose of sale)

*Any of the above, that is as much as a Nisab,(the minimum amount on which Zakaat is paid) kept for one year is due for Zakaat. Let me put it in a simpler form.. Someone may have kept silver for one year, if this silver is not up to a Nisab, Zakaat is not paid on it and same goes for the others.

              How much is Nisab?

  • For grains, the Nisab is five wasaq(which is approximately 135kg of grains) and one wasq is equivalent to sixty saa’ and a saa’ is equivalent to four times of both handfuls of a man of average built.
  • For silver, the Nisaab is 140 mithqal which equals 56 Saudi riyals(all you have to do in this case is convert your currency into riyals and see).
  • For gold, it is 20 mithqal and equals 92 grams or 11 3/7 pounds.(you get to weight that to find this out)
  • Money is valued according to the Nisab for gold or silver.
  • For commercial commodities, you value them(make an inventory) at the end of the year and pay on them.

How much is paid?

  • On fruits and grains, if they relied on natural means for water such as rain and rivers, the amount due on them is 10 per cent of the total amount but if they relied on unnatural sources such as irrigation schemes, 5% is due on them.
  • On gold and silver, 2.5% is due on the total amount, including the profit earned. Same goes for money-2.5% is paid.
  • For commercial commodities, an inventory is taken at the end of the year, and 2.5% is paid on that. The inventory includes the profit made even if not in one’s possession at the end of the year or if the profit came about at the end of the year. What matters is that the capital(original amount )is up to the Nisab at the beginning of the year. TO make it clearer, the prophet asked his companions to pay Zakaat on their herds with the inclusion of the newly born at later part of the year.

Note– Zakaat is to be paid on the wealth of Orphans and of the insane. Whoever is in charge of their money is to pay Zakaat on them if the monies are up to the Nisab and kept for a period of one year.

Now, we know what Zakaat is due on, and how much of it is paid,

who do we pay to??
Allah says-
‘The charity(I.e Zakaat) is only for the poor, the needy, those employed to collect(the Zakaat), for slaves, for    those   in debt, for (jihaad) in the cause of Allah, and Allah is the All-Knower, the All-Wise’ (Q.9:60).

  • The Last part, Allah is the All-knower, the All-Wise is some form of warning to us, to desist from diverting the Zakaat to other purposes for Allah is wise enough and knows well enough whom is deserving of the Zakaat.
  • The poor are those unable to support themselves with sufficient means, except for very little, and that little is for less than a year.
  • The needy are those who are able to support themselves with sufficient means for half of the year or more but not enough for the entire year. For someone who doesn’t have cash on him but has sources of income like a job or profession that can sustain him, he should not be given the Zakaat.
  • Those employed to collect the Zakaat are those who are in charge of collecting from the rich and distributing to the poor. They are paid according to the effort they put in.
  • Those whose hearts would be inclined are those whom when given the Zakaat might become Muslims or might have increase in faith and even become callers to the deen.
  • Slaves in order to buy and set them free.
  • Those in debt, if they do not have the means to pay off.
  • In the cause of Allah refers to jihad. People who fight for Allah’s cause are in this category. Also, students are in the cause of Allah and may be in need of materials such as books to buy and are also entitled to it.
  • The wayfarer is a traveler that is stranded. Zakaat is meant to enable him get back home.

                                                                              Zakaat al fitr

 While Zakaat al mal can be given at any part of the year, Zakaat al fitr is given at the end of ramadan and before or on the day of eid al fitr.

IT is given to enable the poor have something to feast on. Eid al fitr is a day of celebration signifying the end of Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and the month in which the obligatory fasting is done.
It also serves as a purification of our fast from vain speech and immoral acts just like the sajdah of correction(ba’di and qabli) purify our salaat.

What is given?

Saa’ of food, particularly of foods uprooted from the soil. It is recommended that the staple food available in each area is what is provided.

What is allowed is in the form of grains, barley and its likes. Meat, fish eggs are not acceptable.

Money, clothes and other stuffs apart from what is stipulated by the prophet are NOT to be given as Zakatul fitr.


To be given on the day of eid, just before the eid prayers is preferable. To give it after the eid prayers is considered charity(Sadaqah) rather than Zakaat. However, some companions of the prophet would give it two days before eid and that is permissible!

To whom??

Some scholars say it should be given only to those Allah commands to be given Zakaat al mal while others say it is meant for the poor only.

Obligatory on whom??

A Muslim who is able to pay it.
Everyone pays on behalf of whom they take responsibility over. A man pays on behalf of his wife, children, poor parents(who cant pay on themselves), slaves, or other relatives under his care. If they can pay on themselves, it is better that they do.
He doesn’t have to pay on a child who takes responsibility on himself or a maid whom he pays salary.
If a child is born into the family before sunset on the last day of ramadan, it should be paid on his behalf, likewise if a man dies before sunset on the last day of ramadan, it must be paid from what he left or on his behalf.


A saa’(equivalent to four handfuls of an average built man) is paid on behalf of each person. A saa’ is approximately 3kg of rice.

If you have read this far, I say MashaAllah on your behalf..*winks*

May Allah help us to be able to put his commands into practice. May He bless the generality of the Muslim Ummah. May He accept all our Ibaadah and accept us into jannatul firdaus!!!!!!!!!!! Amin.


Zakaat al fitr


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