Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat
I told my uncle that I am thinking to give zakat to Mrs. X (I didn’t send him any money and didn’t specify any amount) . Now, my uncle used his own money to pay zakat to Mrs. X without letting me know. He told Mrs. X that this is the zakat money from me. My uncle was expecting that I will send him money. Now, if I agree to accept his zakat payment on my behalf and send him the money he gave as zakat on my behalf, then is my zakat fulfilled?
I pray you are well.
Paying Someone’s Zakat Without Their Instruction
If you did not specifically tell him to pay you zakat on your behalf it would not have been counted as zakat from yourself. This requires explicit instructions.
Paying him the amount now will not count as a valid payment of zakat, unless he himself is an eligible recipient of zakat. The amount your uncle gave will be considered to be voluntary charity for him. (Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al Muhtar, Ibn Nujaym, al Bahr al Ra’iq)
Help Your Uncle
Explain this to your uncle, and tell him he will be rewarded as having given charity. Zakat has some specific conditions so the above won’t be counted as zakat. Perhaps you could give some money to him with the intention of helping him. Allah sees your intentions, and “everyone will get what they intended.” (Bukhari) Intend to help him, as he may have been expecting that money back. ”Whatever you spend [Allah] will replace it.” (Quran, 34:39)
May Allah grant you the best of both worlds.
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History, he moved to Damascus in 2007, where, for 18 months, he studied with many erudite scholars. In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years in Sacred Law (fiqh), legal theory (Usul al-fiqh), theology, hadith methodology, hadith commentary, and Logic. He was also given licenses of mastery in the science of Quranic recital. He was able to study an extensive curriculum of Quranic sciences, tafsir, Arabic grammar, and Arabic eloquence.