Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch
I have broken multiple fasts over multiple Ramadans due to eating, drinking, and other stuff. I am considering doing kaffara for 30 days to give myself peace of mind. My question is, do I have to do the kaffara and make up the missed fasts continuously, or can I do 60 fasts and then, every couple of days, do the qadha fasts?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
Eating or drinking intentionally during Ramadan, if one already intended from the night to fast that day, necessitates qada (make-up fasts) and kaffara (60 days of expiatory fasts). [Tahtawi, Hashiya al-Tahtawi ‘ala Maraqi al-Falah]
The make-up fasts are to be done first, and then it is recommended to follow them up with the expiatory fasts immediately. [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]
The fast for six expiratory days is in succession. Therefore one should time them so that no days prohibited from fasting – such as the days of ‘Eid -come within that period. The only exception is the days of a woman’s menstruation or post-natal bleeding, as it is unlikely for a woman to go sixty days without menstruation.
One Set of Expiatory Fasts Suffices for Multiple Ramadans
Suppose one has repetitively broken their fast in Ramadan and has not performed the expiatory fasts for the first of those breakings. In that case, one set of expiatory fasts is sufficient, even if the prior breakings were from more than one Ramadan. This is according to Imam Muhammad (Allah have mercy on him), and this opinion is the relied upon position. [Tahtawi, Hashiya al-Tahtawi ‘ala Maraqi al-Falah citing Bazzaziyya, Mujtaba and others.]
Due to your multiple breaking fasts of multiple Ramadans, you must calculate, with reasonable surety, the number of days you did not fast and make them up. After that, you must fast for sixty consecutive days, timing it so that no prohibited days fall within that time. This will suffice you in your obligation to rectify your situation. [Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah]
Hope this helps
And Allah knows best
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and a number of texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.