Must I Make Up Missed Qurbani, If I Did Not Know It Was Obligatory?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

Question

When I first began practicing Islam, I followed the ruling that offering Qurbani is a Sunna, not a Wajib. However, after a few years, I began to follow the Hanafi madhab, but I had no idea that Qurbani was considered necessary.

So I’ve missed roughly ten years of Qurbani since I first began practicing (my wealth was always above the Nisab). Is it necessary for me to make-up missed Qurbani?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

In normal cases, it would be obligatory to make up the slaughter or to give the value of the slaughter animal to charity. [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

However, in your case, since you did not know of the obligation of slaughtering (Qurbani), you are not obliged to make-up for missed slaughters. This is because from the conditions for an act of worship to be obligatory on someone is that they have knowledge of its obligation or live in a place where such knowledge is easily accessible or widespread. [Ibid.]

Summary

You are not obliged to make-up for any missed Qurbani sacrifices up till now, however, moving forward, if you meet the requirements, such as the nisab, you must perform the Qurbani.

Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

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.