Is there Zakat to pay every month from monthly salary?
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
“Truly, those who believe, and do deeds of righteousness, and perform salah and give zakah, they will have their reward with their Lord. On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.”(Al-Baqarah: 277).
There are two types of Zakah:
-Zakat al Maal
In Arabic, Zakah (Zakat) means purification, growth and blessing. It is a charitable practice that requires all able Muslims who meet the requirement of zakah as dependent upon nisab (the minimum amount of wealth a Muslim must have—after calculating necessary expenses—to be eligible to contribute zakah). Nisab is equivalent to the value of 3 ounces of gold and hawl (the wealth on which zakah should be paid must have been held for at least one full year). There are some forms of zakah that do not require hawl, such as for crops. When zakah should be paid at the time of the harvest it is to contribute a fixed portion of their wealth to help the needy—generally, 2.5% of savings gold and silver, jewelry in trade, stocks, produce, sale and purchase of livestock and crops, etc. of —to help the needy.
Zakat is not simply regarded as a tax, it is an act of worship which may be described as financial worship. Allah (SWT) associated Zakat with the compulsory prayers twenty-seven times in the Qur’an by saying, “Establish the prayer and give Zakat“, and is therefore one of the most emphasised acts of worship.
-Zakat al Fitr
Every Muslim is required to pay Zakat-al-Fitr at the conclusion of the month of Ramadan as a token of thankfulness to Allah (SWT) for having enabled him to observe fasts. The amount to be paid is much lower than Zakat al Mal. Zakat al Fitr is paid by the head of the household on behalf of all family members, wife, children, and servants inside his home.
Salary is not a new thing for Muslims. It was established a long time ago. Umar Ibn Al Khattab -may Allah be pleased with him- once performed a task ordered by the Messenger of Allah -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him-, and he gave him his wage. Umar refused it at first, but the messenger of Allah – peace and prayer of Allah be upon him – said to him: “If you are given something without asking for it, eat (take) it and spend it in charity.” (Narrated by Muslim).
It proves that the term wage or salary has long been known by the Muslims and is not a new phenomena. For 14 centuries none of the scholars ever issued a fatwa about zakat taken from one’s salary or wage. It shows that this kind of zakat is not a valid one, but what exists is the zakat taken from certain kinds of wealth that must fulfill two requirements of nisab and a year of possession (hawl).
Thus, the scholars who are also experts in ijtihaad (opinion) in our century have refused this opinion; such as Sheikh Ibn Baz, who said that: “Zakat taken from the wage which is a form is money needs to be detailed: If the wage is received and a year has passed, and it’s amount already equals the nisab, the zakat for such wages are compulsory. But if that wage is less than the nisab, or it hasn’t reached a year yet, or it has been spent , there is no zakat obligation on it.” (Maqalaat Al Mutanawwi’ah by Syeikh Abdul Aziz bin Baaz 14/134. Sheikh Muhammad Ibn Shaleh Al Uthaymeen also justified the similar opinion in his work Majmu’ Fatawa wa Ar Rasaa’il 18/178)
The Permanent Members of the Fatwa Committee of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia also have issued a similar fatwa regarding this matter, as cited below:
“It is commonly known that among the properties that have zakat obligation in it are gold and silver (currency). And among the compulsory requirements of zakat taken from gold and silver (money) is a year should have passed since the possession of that money. Regarding that fact, then zakat that is being compulsory for the salary of the employees that has been saved and equals to nisab, whether the salary itself equals to nisab, or after being added with money from another source, and it’s possession has passed one year’s time. It is not right to make the salary and the harvest equal because the requirement of one year’s possession has been established in valid indication, thus there should be no comparison with it. Based on that consideration, zakat is not compulsory for the salary of the employees until a year of possession has passed.” (Majmu’ Fatwa of The Permanent Members of Fatwa Committee, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 9/281, fatwa no: 1360)
To purify our salary, we can do shadaqah.
“Charity does not decrease the wealth and the servant who forgives, Allah adds to his respect; and the one who shows humility, Allah elevates him in the estimation (of the people).”(Narrated by Muslim).
Shadaqah is a special offer from Allah (SWT) that stands as long as we’re alive. Make shadaqah a productive habit this Ramadan, and a habit throughout our lives. Don’t forget to do Zakat al-Fitr in the end of Ramdhan.
May Allah, The Most Generous, make us of those who give zakah and give regular shadaqah and may Allah, Subhanahu wa Ta’ala, accept it from us. Allahumma Aamiin.