Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel
I signed up for a delivery service that offers a free trial, but in the end, I deleted my account. I signed up again, and they gave me another free trial! So, I kept deleting and signing up repeatedly to get those free trials. Now finally, after many times doing this, they deactivated my account. So, is what I did haram and stealing? I didn’t think it was because they were allowing it! Suddenly, they stopped allowing it, and of course, I stopped doing it because, as I said, my account got deactivated, so is it haram? And if it is, what should I do now? There is no way to pay them back because they’re a big company and it would be very unusual for me to explain all this to them. Can I do sadaqah instead? or is it not stealing?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
I pray you are well.
This will come in the form of cheating and deception into intending to use a service with a fee, but one deceives them. You can give the company an estimated amount of money if possible or give it to any charity.
Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) reported from the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Whoever deceives us is not from among us.” [Muslim; Tirmidhi]
It was narrated that Muhammad bin Yahya bin Habban (Allah be pleased with him) said: “My grandfather was Munqidh bin ‘Amr. He was a man who had suffered a head wound and lost the power of speech, but that did not stop him from engaging in trade. He was always being cheated, so he went to the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) and told him about that. He said to him: ‘When you buy something, say: “There should be no intention of cheating,” and for every product you buy, you have the choice for three nights. If you are pleased with it, keep it, and if you are displeased, then return it.’” [Ibn Maja]
Sad ibn Abi Waqqas (Allah be pleased with him) said, “A believer is instilled with several qualities except deception and lying.” [Ibn Abi Shayba, Musannaf Ibn Abi Shayba; Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]
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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 within UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan and Turkey.
He started his early education in UK. He went onto complete hifz of Qur’an in India, then enrolled into an Islamic seminary in UK where he studied the secular and Alimiyyah sciences. He then travelled to Karachi, Pakistan.
He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for a number of years. He has taught hifz of the Qur’an, Tajwid, Fiqh and many other Islamic sciences to both children and adults onsite and online extensively in UK and Ireland. He was teaching 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 UK with his wife. His personal interest is love of books and gardening.