Can Give Zakat to Someone Who Is Surviving but not Thriving?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: I have an aunt who is in a difficult financial position. She has some land that, when cultivated, allows her family to just get by. She has asked us for zakat money so that she and her husband can open a shop. What is the ruling on me giving her zakat in this situation?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.
If she does not possess the zakatable minimum (nisab) in any form of wealth, it would be permitted to give her your zakat. [see: e-nisab]
Otherwise, you can give her charity (sadaqa), or even lend her some money that will assist in fulfilling her needs.
As for Zakat, it is a specific form of charity that must be given in a specific way according to the conditions outlined by the Lawgiver.
Please also see: Is Your Zakat Due? – A Reader and Resources on Giving Zakat
And Allah alone gives success.
Tabraze Azam
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani