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ISLAMIC INHERITANCE

An attempt to simplify the sharing of inheritance to the Muslim ummah.

ISLAMIC INHERITANCE

Rasulul Lah (peace be upon him) said:
“O people: learn fara’idh (knowledge of inheritance). It is half of knowledge”

Knowledge of inheritance(Quran)

The study of Inheritance in Islam is used as an instrument to break the capitalistic monopoly of wealth in the society.

The Quran and Hadith place great emphasis on the knowledge of fara-idh (knowledge of inheritance).

Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) said in the Holy Quran:

Knowledge of inheritance(Hadith)

Rasulul Lah (peace be upon him) said:

“Acquire the knowledge and impart it to the people, acquire the knowledge of fara’id (law of inheritance) and teach it to the people; for I am a person who has to depart this world and the knowledge will be taken away and turmoil will appear to such an extent that two people will not agree in regard to a case of Inheritance distribution and find none who would decide between them”

Knowledge of inheritance(Quran)

“To (benefit) everyone, we have appointed shares and heirs to property left by parents and relatives. To those also to whom your right hand was pledged, give their due portion. For truly Allah is witness to all things”

Quran chapter 4 verse 33

Mobirise

INTRODUCTION

SHARE IT (Islamic Software) is an attempt to simplify the sharing of inheritance to the Muslim ummah. It is also aimed at facilitating the distribution of legacy according to Islamic injunction. The package is expected to make the distribution of legacy not just easier, faster but also logical in line with the approved Islamic jurisprudence.
Legacy distribution according to Islamic jurisprudence is a difficult aspect in Islam with its numerous diverse categorizations which may appear confusing. With the help of this software, both people of the low and the Muslim Ummah can find it easier, faster and logical with the distribution.


PRIOR RIGHTS

There are three things which have priority over the distribution of deceased’s estate.
These are: 

1.    Burial Expenses
2.    Debts
3.    Bequests (wasiyya)

1

Burial Expenses

The burial expense will be taken from the estate, permission is not given for unnecessary expenses. Only the amount required for the kafan (Burial cloth), bricks/timbers to be used in the Qabr, transportation cost if they have to hire vehicle to transport the deceased body to the place of rest (cost of transporting the deceased’s body to another town for burial is unnecessary expenses which may not be taking from the deceased’s estate), paying the one who bathes the decease if no one is prepare to render this service, price of the grave if they must pay for the space, etc. If the decease does not leave behind any estate whatsoever, the responsibility of the burial expenses will be from the heirs (inheritors) in proportion to their respective rights of inheritance or if any one or more can take the full responsibility of the burial expense, they can do so on behalf of the other heirs. In the absence of relatives, neighbours will take the responsibility of the burial expenses.  

2

Debts

All debts of the deceased are to be paid off completely from what is left of the assets belonging to him. Now comes rights of others, which are very strongly emphasized in Islamic law, so much so that Allah is not going to forgive anyone in the hereafter, if his debts to others are not paid off or overlooked by the concerned person. If the assets cover the debts, all of it will go for that. But if the assets are short, then the debt is to be paid off as much as possible, and the total amount will go to the creditor. If there are more than one creditor and the assets are not enough to entirely cover all of them, then each one of them will get a proportionate amount and each suffers in the same ratio.
It will be in their own everlasting interests to waive the debt of a deceased whose estate lacks assets to discharge the liability. The reward of waiving debts is vastly more and superior to giving charity.
Hadith of the Prophet (S.A.W)
Once, while we were sitting in the company of Prophet, a dead man was brought. The Prophet was requested to lead the funeral prayer for the deceased. He said, "Is he in debt?" The people replied in the negative. He said, "Has he left any wealth?" They said, "No." So, he led his funeral prayer. Another dead man was brought and the people said, "O Allah's Apostle! Lead his funeral prayer." The Prophet said, "Is he in debt?" They said, "Yes." He said, "Has he left any wealth?" They said, ''Three Dinars." So, he led the prayer. Then a third dead man was brought and the people said (to the Prophet ), Please lead his funeral prayer." He said, "Has he left any wealth?" They said, "No." He asked, "Is he in debt?" They said, ("Yes! He has to pay) three Diners.', He (refused to pray and) said, "Then pray for your (dead) companion." Abu Qatada said, "O Allah's Apostle! Lead his funeral prayer, and I will pay his debt " So, he led the prayer.
Narrated Salama bin Al-Akwa: 

3

Bequests (wasiyyah)

The wasiyya (last wishes) of the deceased are to be carried out at the expense of the deceased. But this may cover at most a third of what is left out of the estate after the burial expenses and the debts are paid off. The one third (or less) of the wasiyyah to be given to a non-inheritor in the following categories:     

    1.     For charity projects like the building of mosques, the digging of wells, or providing a share of the legacy to poor, non-inheriting relatives.
   2.      Payment of fidyah (compensation) for salat, saum and Hajj which were not executed during the lifetime of the deceased.
   3.      Payment of kaffarah (penalty) for violated oaths, fasts etc.

When the third is insufficient for execution of more than one wasiyyat, priority will be accorded to the wasiyyat of greater importance. Example: wasiyyat was made on first and second category. Since second category (payment of fidyah for Salat, Saum and Hajj) is more important than the first one, payment of the second category will be done first.
When wasiyyat was made on more them one item on second or third category and the third is insufficient for execution, the wasiyyat which was made first will be discharged and others will be cancelled.
When wasiyyat of different amounts were made for several person in first category and the third is insufficient to execute all, then each of them will get a proportionate amount and each suffer in the same ratio. 


FACTORS WHICH DEPRIVE HEIRS INHERITANCE

There are four factors which deprive a person from inheriting. In this case the blood relation is there or the factor entitling the person to inherit is there, but because of the existing condition he/she is barred to use his power and competence.

  1. Slavery - A slave cannot inherit from his relations.
  2. Murder - The heir who intentionally caused the death of the deceased will not get anything from the assets of the deceased.
  3. Differences in terms of Religion - A non- Muslim cannot inherit from a Muslim. 
  4. Lifeless baby - Baby born lifeless.
  5. Denied pregnancy or heir - Bastard child can’t inherit from the father and vis-à-vis.
  6. Simultaneous death - Two or more heirs died simultaneously can’t inherit from each other.

HEIRS TO THE ESTATE AND THEIR SHARES

Allah subhana watahala says in the only Quran (surah al-Nisa 4 verse 11).

“Allah instructs you concerning your children’s (inheritance): a male receives a share equal to that of two females. But if they (the children) are only women, and are more than (or equal to) two, their share is two thirds of that which he (the deceased) had left. And if there is only one female, her share is half (of the estate). And his parents, each one’s share is a sixth of that which he left if he had children. But if he had no children, and the parents inherit from him, the mother’s share is one third. And if he had siblings, the mother’s share is a sixth. (These distributions should be done) after the payment of any bequeathals that he may have made or debts. (that he may have had). Your parents and offspring – you do not know which among them are nearest to you in benefit. (These shares are) an ordainment imposed by Allah. Indeed, Allah is knowing and wise”

Allah (subuhanahu wa ta’ala) says in the Holy Quran (Surah al- Nisa(4) verse 12):

“You receive one half of that which your wives leave if they have no child. If they have a child, you receive one fourth of what they leave – after payment of any bequeathal that they had made or debts (that they had). And they receive one fourth of that which you leave if you have no child. If you have a child, they receive one eighth of what you leave – after payment of any bequeathal that you had made or debts (that you had). If the man or woman whose inheritance is in question has neither ascendants nor descendents, but has a (maternal) brother or sister, each one of them is to receive a sixth; and if they were more than two, they share a third – after payment of any bequeathals that had been made or debts (that are owed), and that are not intended to cause harm (to the legal inheritance). This is a commandment from Allah; and Allah is over knowing and tolerant.”

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) says in the Holy Quran (surah al – Nisa(4) verse 176).

“They ask thee for a legal decision. Say: Allah directs (they) about those who leave no descendants as heirs. If it’s a man that dies leaving a sister but no child she shall have half the inheritance: if (such a deceased was) a woman who left no child her brother takes her inheritance: if there are two sisters they shall have two third of the inheritance (between them); if there are brothers and sisters (they share), the male having twice the share of the female. Thus doth Allah make clear to you (His law) lest ye err. And Allah hath knowledge of all things.” 


Hadith of the Prophet (S.A.W)

Narrated Jabir ibn Abdullah:

I fell ill, and I had seven sisters. The Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) came to me and blew on my face. So I became conscious. I said: Apostle of Allah, may I not bequeath one-third of my property to my sisters? He replied: Do good. I asked: Half? He replied: Do good. He then went out and left me, and said: I do not think, Jabir, you will die of this disease. Allah has revealed (verses) and described the share of your sisters. He appointed two-thirds for them. Jabir used to say: This verse was revealed about me: "They ask thee for a legal decision. Say: Allah directs (thus) about those who leave no descendants or ascendants as heirs.

Narrated Huzail b. Shurahbil al-Aswadi:

A man came to Abu Musa al-Ash'ari and Salman b. Rabi'ah, and asked about a case where there were a daughter, a son's daughter and a full sister. They replied: The daughter gets half and the full sister gets half. The son's daughter gets nothing. Go to Ibn Mas'ud and you will find that he agrees with me. So the man came to him and informed him about their opinion. He said: I would then be in error and not those who are rightly guided. But I decide concerning the matter as the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) did: the daughter gets half, and the son's daughter gets a share which complete two thirds (i.e. gets a sixth), and what remains goes to the full sister.

Narrated Jabir ibn Abdullah

We went out with the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and came to a woman of the Ansar in al-Aswaf. The woman brought her two daughters, and said: Apostle of Allah, these are the daughters of Thabit ibn Qays who was killed as a martyr when he was with you at the battle of Uhud, their paternal uncle has taken all their property and inheritance, and he has not left anything for them. What do you think, Apostle of Allah? They cannot be married unless they have some property. The Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) said: Allah will decide regarding the matter. Then the verse of Surat an-Nisa was revealed: "Allah (thus) directs you as regards your children's (inheritance)." Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) said: Call to me the woman and her husband's brother. He then said to their paternal uncle: Give them two-thirds and their mother an eighth, and what remains is yours.

Narrated Al Aswad b. Yazid: 

Mu'adh b. Jabal gave shares of inheritance to a sister and a daughter. He gave each of them half. He was at Yemen while the Prophet of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) was alive.

Narrated Abdul Lahi ibn Abbas:
The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: Divide the property among those whose share have been prescribed in the Book of Allah, and what remains from the prescribed shares goes to the nearest male heirs. 

Narrated al-Mughirah ibn Shu'bah

Qabisah ibn Dhuwayb said: A grandmother came to Abu Bakr asking him for her share of inheritance. He said: There is nothing prescribed for you in Allah's Book, nor do I know anything for you in the Sunnah of the Prophet of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) Go home till I question the people. He then questioned the people, and al-Mughirah ibn Shu'bah said: I had been present with the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) when he gave grandmother a sixth. Abu Bakr said: Is there anyone with you? Muhammad ibn Maslamah stood and said the same as al-Mughirah ibn Shu'bah had said. So Abu Bakr made it apply to her. Another grandmother came to Umar ibn al-Khattab asking him for her share of inheritance. He said: Nothing has been prescribed for you in Allah's Book. The decision made before you was made for a grandmother other than you. I am not going to add in the shares of inheritance; but it is that sixth. If there are two of you, it is shared between you, but whichever of you is the only one left gets it all.

Narrated Imran ibn Husayn 

A man came to the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) and said: My son has died; what do I receive from his estate? He replied: You receive a sixth. When he turned away he called him and said: You receive another sixth. When he turned away, he called him and said: The other sixth is an allowance (beyond what is due).
Qatadah said: They (the Companions) did not know the heirs with whom he was given (a sixth).
Qatadah said: The minimum share given to the grandfather was a sixth. 

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