Wa `alaykum as-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.
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.
In this fatwa:
1- There are no specific proportions in the Qur’an stating what one should spend on his next of kin. Rather, the Qur’an requires a Muslim to support his dependents, from among them is his mother, equally. It is not Islamic to support any of them more than the others.
2- As for one’s brothers and sisters, they are not included in the dependents, namely a man is not obliged to spend on his brother though he should help them if they are in need.
Responding to your question, Prof. Dr. Monzer Kahf, Professor of Islamic Finance and Economics at Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies, states:
The Qur’an does not give percentages of what one should spend on his close relatives especially parents, brothers and sisters. However, it gives guiding principles and people implement them.
In this regard, the Qur’an requires that every person must spend according to his/her ability.
“O you who have believed, protect yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is people and stones, over which are [appointed] angels, harsh and severe; they do not disobey Allah in what He commands them but do what they are commanded. O you who have disbelieved, make no excuses that Day. You will only be recompensed for what you used to do.” (At-Tahrim 66:6-7)
If one’s mother has no income or wealth to spend on herself, her son is definitely required to spend on her to make her live as well as he and his own children and wife do.
It is not appropriate to make some (whether mother or wife) live higher than the other. This is the application of the rules of the Qur’an.
Allah Almighty knows best.
Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.