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Forgot Zakat Al-Fitr: What Should You Do?

30 April, 2021
Q As-salamu `alaykum. Last year, I did not pay Zakat al-Fitr before Eid Prayer because I didn't remember it until after the Prayer. Then, I didn't pay it after the prayer thinking that it would be charity after the prayer and not the obligatory Zakah. I haven't paid it until now. So, what do I have to do? The second question: my wife has gold. Do I have to pay Zakah on it (noting that my wife wears this gold from time to time)?


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 thsi fatwa:

Forgetting Zakat al-Fitr does not justify neglecting it, as a Muslim would not be blamed for what he or she forgot. So, you have to pay Zakat al-Fitr that you missed last year, as it is considered a debt on you.

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Responding to your question, Dr. Salah Al-Sawy, the President of the Shari`ah Academy and the Secretary General for the Assembly of Muslim Jurists in America, states:

You are obliged to pay the Zakat al-Fitr that you did not give out last year, and the fact that you forgot lifts from you the sin of not meeting your obligation.

However, it remains a debt upon you. You will not be relieved of the responsibility until you pay it, so do that promptly, and may Allah bless you.

As for paying Zakah on permissible adornment, this is a point of disagreement among the scholars. The opinion that it must be paid is more certain to clear you of your obligation and more cautious in terms of your faith.

So, if the amount of gold has reached the legal threshold (nisab), which is 85 grams, you have to pay the Zakah for it, for that is better in terms of meeting your obligation and more pleasing to your Allah.

We ask Allah to grant success to us and to you. And Allah Almighty is the Most High, and He knows best.

Allah Almighty knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.


About Dr. Salah Al-Sawy
President of the Shari`ah Academy and the Secretary General for the Assembly of Muslim Jurists in America