Can I Give Zakat to My Brothers?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: I have two brothers, both married. One has 2 daughters and living in a small flat but is fully employed and earns a middle class salary. The second does not have any children; he is in a light debt to pay for the flat he bought recently; he earns a middle class salary. Can i give all my zakat to them or to more needy people over the globe as i am living abroad and don’t know anybody close and in a dire financial situation.

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.
It is valid and permitted to give your zakat to a legally poor Muslim other than your wife, children [and down], and parents [and up].
A poor Muslim is one who does not possess the zakatable minimum (nisab) above and beyond any immediate needs and debts. [for accurate nisab values, please see:] An extra condition which is needed for a person to be able to accept zakat is that they must not have the nisab in any form of wealth. For example, if somebody possessed two computers, the second being an extra asset, its value would be considered and included in their ‘wealth’ for the purposes of determining whether or not they can accept zakat.
Please also see: Which Nisab Value (Gold vs Silver) Does One Use For Zakat? and: Zakat & Long-Term Debts and: Eligible Zakat Recipients, Giving Locally vs. Abroad, Charity to a Mosque, and Proper Handling of Donations
And Allah alone gives success.
Tabraze Azam
Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani