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Zakaah for dowry

Fatwaa ID: 932

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullāhi wa barakātuh
Can zakat be given in a situation where girl’s family is collecting for their daughters dowry. They have an extensive list of things (that are now a norm in every household) including things a groom’s family is demanding ex; a LED TV.
In this case knowing that are collecting for dowry (jahez) is it okay to give zakat to them.
Important note is that the girl’s family is zakat eligible from some information that is available to us.

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaahi wa-barakaatuh.

At the outset, it is permissible to willingly and voluntarily gift the daughter household items on the occasion of her marriage. Rasulullaah ﷺ did so when Sayyidah Faatimah (R) got married. However, if this is a cultural obligation or it is demanded/expected from the groom’s side and the parents are forced to give something, then that is impermissible. It is haraam to demand such and it is also haraam to comply with such illegitimate demands. It is impermissible for others to assist in such as well.

Nevertheless, zakaah eligibility is determined on an individual basis, not as a family. If a person is eligible, i.e., his/her zakaatable assets as well as non-essential wealth are valued at less than nisaab, then zakaah may be given to him/her and he/she may do as he/she wishes with it.

In the enquired situation, it is clear from your query that the “dowry” is being demanded from the groom’s family. This is haraam. You should not assist in this at all, irrespective of whether they are zakaah eligible or not. Furthermore, based on the details above, they do not seem to be zakaah eligible.

And Allaah Ta’aala knows best.
Mufti Muajul I. Chowdhury
Darul Iftaa New York

وصل اللهم وسلم وبارك على سيدنا محمد وعلى ءاله وصحبه أجمعين


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