Do I Owe Money to a Brother Who Paid for My Food, Initially Refused to Accept Money, Then Agreed to Be Reimbursed?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


I was at work recently when a brother placed a food order, and I ordered something. When I told the brother that I wanted to send him the money he had used to pay for my food, he said it didn’t matter. But when I said I wanted to pay, he agreed. The shift got busy, and he told me to do it later; I forgot, and this brother was only there for that one shift. I don’t know how to contact him, and what is the best solution in this situation?

Do I legally owe him money, or does it make no difference? I overthink everything and would appreciate the advice. Do I owe money to a brother who paid for my food and agreed to be reimbursed after initially refusing?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

I pray you are well. Thank you for your question.

Yes, you still owe him the money. Find out the details of the person through the company administration. Contact him by phone, or if they don’t share mobile, by email and arrange. If this is not possible, then give the money to charity, and if you do get in touch in the future, you can discuss repayment again if he will accept.

“Allah (Most High) commands you to return the things you hold on trust to their owners” [Quran, 4:58]

As your intention is to repay, you don’t need to worry at all, stay assured. Wait for a while if you can locate him, otherwise just give money to charity. The Prophet (Allah bless him & give him peace) said, “Verily actions are by their intentions, and one shall only have that which one intended.” [Bukhari;Muslim]

Why not begin your search for knowledge by signing up for a course on Seekersguidance?

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.