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Missed Zakat is a common issue, with lots of causes. Some people knowingly miss it, others forget, and many just make a mistake when working out the amount. Catching up on missed Zakat can seem like a big task but it’s important you get it right, as Zakat remains a debt and can’t be written off. This handy guide will help you figure out if you’ve missed Zakat and how to work out how much.

 

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Missed Zakat FAQs

How can I have missed paying my Zakat?

One can miss Zakat payments intentionally or unintentionally for a number of reasons:

  1. Forgetting Zakat altogether
  2. Miscalculating Zakat and as a result not paying at all or paying less than what was due
  3. Being lazy and missing Zakat
  4. Saving money to purchase something deemed important
What should I do if I have mixed up my voluntary charity with Zakat?

Zakat liability drops upon the loss of one’s wealth due to factors out of one’s control such as fires, floods, theft etc. However, Zakat liability will only drop if these unfortunate events occurred without spending one’s money. Realistically, if these events occurred on one’s Zakat date or immediately after without using any of the funds, Zakat liability will be overlooked. This is the Hanafi school’s opinion.

For example, the Nisab was £200 and on the Zakat anniversary, Musa had £200. A day later, a spontaneous fire burnt the £200 worth of notes he had. In such a scenario, since the actual Nisab he held has been destroyed without his wrongdoing, foul play or without spending, the Zakat liability will drop completely as the actual Nisab and savings are no longer present.

This ruling is according to the Hanafi school who opine that Zakat liability is initially on the actual wealth itself rather than the liability of a person. Only after using the funds does the Zakat liability move onto oneself from the wealth. Thereafter, the Zakat remains a debt on the person.

However, according to the majority of schools of Fiqh, namely, the Maliki, Shafi’i and Hanbali schools, the Zakat liability is upon the individual from the outset. Therefore, a missed Zakat payment will not be written off upon the destruction of wealth on condition one had the ability to pay and did not paid.

Do I have to pay the entire outstanding balance of Zakat immediately?

The four mainstream schools of Islamic jurisprudence, namely, the Hanafi, Shafi’i, Maliki and Hanbali schools are in agreement that the payment of Zakat is due immediately upon becoming obligatory. Therefore, the outstanding Zakat amount must be paid immediately as a matter of urgency.

What should I do if I have mixed up my voluntary charity with Zakat?
It is necessary to calculate Zakat correctly to ensure one is fulfilling this command of Allah properly.  It is strongly encouraged that one reviews his accounts and finances for the previous years and the amount of Zakat disbursed.  This will clarify if there is a deficit in payment.  One can make amends thereafter.
Do I have to pay the entire outstanding balance of Zakat immediately?

The four mainstream schools of Islamic jurisprudence, namely, the Hanafi, Shafi’i, Maliki and Hanbali schools are in agreement that the payment of Zakat is due immediately upon becoming obligatory. Therefore, the outstanding Zakat amount must be paid immediately as a matter of urgency.

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