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What Is the Correct and Reasonable Way to Repay Money That Has Been Stolen? (Shafi‘i)

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Shuaib Ally

Question: Assalam alaykum,

What is the correct and reasonable way to repay money that has been stolen?

Answer: Assalam alaykum,

I pray that you are well.

The correct way is to return the stolen property through whatever means possible. It is not permissible to give it to someone else, or use it for an otherwise praiseworthy end, such as charity.

If you cannot give it directly, you can give it to another that will do so without it being traced back to you. Alternatively, you can send it via a form of registered mail that is unlikely to not deliver, or leave it in a place that the person who you took the money from will likely find it.

God knows best.

[Shaykh] Shuaib Ally

Shaykh Shuaib Ally is a scholar who has recently returned to Toronto after completing his studies overseas. He started his studies by completing his MA in Islamic Studies at the University of Toronto in 2008. He went on to study in a number of Islamic disciplines privately with scholars in Saudi Arabia, including Tafsir, Qur’anic Sciences, Shafi’i law, Usul, Hadith, Hadith Methodology, Grammar and Balagha. Shaykh Shuaib currently resides in Toronto.