In this 21st century, where technological developments are also increasingly advanced, perhaps most people have made zakat fitrah payments with money. Some people may have yet to meet face-to-face or pay zakat online.
In various histories, the Prophet Muhammad Saw ordered his people to pay zakat fitrah and another zakat with basic foodstuffs. So, what exactly is the law of paying zakat fitrah with money?
The Law of Paying Zakat with Money
Previously, Islamic scholars agreed that zakat fitrah was issued as a primary foodstuff. It is based on the hadith of Ibn Umar radhiyallahu ‘anhu, which reads:
“The Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) obliged zakat fitrah one sa’ date or one sa’ wheat upon Muslim, whether sahaya (enslaved person) or free servants, male or female, small or adult. The Apostle Saw ordered its execution before the people went out for prayers.” (HR. Bukhari Muslim)
Also read: Can Zakat Payments be paid in installments? Here is the Explanation
However, what about the law of paying zakat fitrah or another zakat with money? So, three Islamic clerics’ opinions can be used as a reference for Muslims. They were Hanafiyyah, Shafi’iyyah and Hanabilah, and Ibn Taimiyyah.
Opinion of Hanafiyyah
Hanafiyyah says that Muslims can pay zakat fitrah or another zakat with qimah money or currency.
Opinions of Shafi’iyyah and Hanabilah
Shafi’iyyah and Hanabilah say that Muslims cannot pay zakat fitrah or others using qimah or currency.
Opinion of Ibn Taimiyyah
Ibn Taimiyyah or Ibn Taimiyyah scholars say that Muslims can pay zakat fitrah with money if there is maslahat. This opinion is contained in Imam Ahmad’s history in Majmu’ Fatawa Ibn Taimiyyah vol. 25/82.
Quoting the Dompet Dhuafa Zakat Handbook written by Ustaz Abdul Rochim, Lc., the benefit of paying zakat in the form of money at this time is something that cannot be denied. The needs of mustahik currently are very diverse, not only basic foodstuffs.
Also read: Innovation of Zakat Distribution and Empowerment, Dompet Dhuafa Lampung Launches Dapur Keliling (DARLING)
Sometimes issuing zakat with basic foodstuffs will harm the mustahik or zakat recipients. Because, to meet other needs, the zakat recipient must resell the zakat property he received at a substandard price.
Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a cleric dubbed a Moderate Islamist, gave a strong argument as to why the Prophet Saw at that time ordered zakat fitrah in the form of staple food. Not everyone had dinars or dirhams then, so their access to basic foodstuffs was easier. Therefore, if the Prophet Saw ordered zakat in the form of money, this would burden the Muslims.
Unlike today’s conditions, the situation has changed. A person is more accessible to earn money than basic foodstuffs. Thus, giving zakat as money provides maslahat (goodness) for mustahik or beneficiaries. Wallahua’lam bishawab..
For Good Friends who want to channel their zakat fitrah through Dompet Dhuafa, you can access the link below to find out more info: