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- Prayer is the only act of worship from which a Muslim is never exempted under any condition as long as he/she is alive.
2- In your case, you are allowed to wipe over socks for a whole day and night (five prayers) if you are a resident, and three days and nights if you are a traveler.
In responding to your question, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and an Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:
You may wipe over socks for twenty four hours as long as you fulfill certain conditions:
a) Socks or stockings must be thick and not transparent so that water does not seep through when wiped over.
b) They must cover both the upper and the lower parts of the feet up to the ankle bones.
d) One must not take them off. If one does take them off, he must take the socks off and wash the feet completely the next time he makes wudu.
e) Wiping must not exceed the period of one full day and night in the case of a resident and three days and nights for a traveler.
f) Finally, one must remove the socks if ghusl (bathing) becomes obligatory.
Allah Almighty knows best.
Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.