Can One Buy Phones That Were Imported Evading Taxes?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


Will buying smartphones imported into my country be permissible, evading taxes? Although these phones are widely available in shops and used in my country, they are technically illegal. The official phones have almost double the price, so many buy these unofficial phones.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.

I pray you are in good faith and health. Thank you for your question.

It would be better to avoid buying these types of phones. However, it would be permissible. As major contemporary scholars have answered, it is not permitted to lie or deceive to avoid taxes. At the same time, one can take all lawful means to reduce or even avoid taxes.

This would correspond to the fact that lying and deception are not allowed for Muslims in their dealing, even with non-Muslims. This involves both.

Believers Have Many Temperaments, Except Lying and Dishonesty

Abdur Rahman ibn Yazid (Allah be pleased with him) reported that Abdullah ibn Mas‘ud (Allah be pleased with him) said, “The believer may have all kinds of natural dispositions flowing throughout himself, except for treachery and dishonesty.”  [Ibn Abi Shayba, al-Iman]

Muslim citizens residing in non-Muslim countries should abide by the laws of those respective countries. The taxes on the citizens provide a financial source for the government to enable them to deliver services. The government also provides many facilities; we cannot expect to use these without contributing to the facilities. [Usmani, Fath al-Mulhim]

I would like you to go through the valuable answers and links below. You will receive guidance and direction, in sha’ Allah.

Related: Deception, Cheating, & Concern – Birgivi’s The Path of Muhammad Explained. [Video]

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I pray this helps with your question.
[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally trained scholar who has studied in the UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, and Turkey. He started his early education in the UK. He went on to complete the hifz of the Quran in India, then enrolled in an Islamic seminary in the UK, where he studied the secular and ‘Aalimiyya sciences. He then traveled to Karachi, Pakistan. He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for several years. He has taught hifz of the Quran, Tajwid, Fiqh, and many other Islamic sciences to children and adults onsite and online extensively in the UK and Ireland. He taught at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK, where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences. He currently resides in the UK with his wife. His interest is a love of books and gardening.