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Working as an Actuarial Scientist for an insurance company.

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

I would like to query the issue of working as an actuarial scientist.

Whether the earning from this job are halaal and allowed. And if working for

an insurance company can 1 earn a halaal income?

Regarding this matter. If ones spouse is an actuary and they both are

earning. Then what the actuary spouse brings into the home or gifts the

other spouse is it halaal or not?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

According to our understanding actuarial science is the discipline that applies mathematical and statistical methods to assess risk in insurance, finance and other industries and professions. Actuaries are professionals who are qualified in this field through education and experience. Actuarial science also includes a number of interrelated subjects, including probability, mathematics, statistics, finance, economics, financial economics, and computer programming.

In principle, any active and direct participation in any unlawful venture is impermissible and tantamount to assisting in sin. Allah Taala says:

وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ

Do not assist one another in sin and transgression (Surah Maidah: 2)

Nevertheless, when working as an employee in a business where a major portion of the business does not conform to the dictates of Shariah as tends to be the case in the conventional financial sector there are principally two issues that must be determined:

1. Is the job itself permissible? I.e., does the contracted work itself fall foul of the Shariah or, if not, does it amount to assisting in sin?

2. What is the source of funds from which the employee is remunerated?

As for the first, if the role of an actuary simply involves mathematical analyses to predict financial risk in future investments, then this job itself is permissible even if the analyses involves calculating interest.  The prohibition of recording interest relates to the recording of the actual contract only [1] and analysing or predicting profits for a company though interest based has no active and direct participation in any unlawful venture and is not tantamount to assisting in sin.

As for the second question, according to the principles of Imām Abū Ḥanīfah, if a Muslim is an employee in a prohibited sector and only performs a permissible function such as the actuarial function mentioned above, such employment will be permitted and any remuneration received will also be lawful. [2]

Note: Conventional insurance companies have three elements prohibited in Shariah namely: riba (interest) gharar (uncertainty) and qimar (gambling). It is for this reason that as Muslims we are averse to any affiliation or active and direct participation in conventional insurance. The job of an Actuarial Scientist may be permissible but, it is not free of karahat (dislike) if one is working for an insurance company. Therefore, if an alternate job opportunity is available one should not work for insurance companies.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Ismail Dawoodjee

Student Darul Iftaa
Zambia

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

www.daruliftaa.net 

عَنْ جَابِرٍ، قَالَ: لَعَنَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ آكِلَ الرِّبَا، وَمُؤْكِلَهُ، وَكَاتِبَهُ، وَشَاهِدَيْهِ، وَقَالَ: هُمْ سَوَاءٌ (مسلم -1598)[1]

ففى فتح البارى تحت حديث الربا في البخاري:  وهذا إنما يقع على من واطأ صاحب الربا عليه فأما من كتبه أو شهد القصة ليشهد بها على ما هي عليه ليعمل فيها بالحق فهذا جميل القصد لا يدخل في الوعيد المذكور وإنما يدخل فيه من أعان صاحب الربا بكتابته وشهادته …  (4/314)

  [2] قوله: (وجاز تعمير كنيسة) قال فى الخانية: ولو آجر نفسه ليعمل فى الكنيسة ويعمرها لا بأس به لأنه لا معصية فى عين العمل. قوله: (وحمل خمر ذمى) قال الزيلعى: وهذا عنده وقالا: هو مكروه ” لأنه عليه الصلاة والسلام {لعن فى الخمر عشرة وعد منها حاملها} “. وله أن الإجارة على الحمل وهو ليس بمعصية ، ولا سبب لها وإنما تحصل المعصية بفعل فاعل مختار. وليس الشرب من ضرورات الحمل لأن حملها قد يكون للإراقة أو للتخليل ، فصار كما إذا استأجره لعصر العنب أو قطعه. والحديث محمول على الحمل المقرون بقصد المعصية. اهـ. زاد فى النهاية وهذا قياس وقولهما استحسان. ثم قال الزيلعى: وعلى هذا الخلاف لو آجره دابة لينقل عليها الخمر أو آجره نفسه ليرعى له الخنازير يطيب له الأجر عنده وعندهما يكره . (رد المحتار ج6 ص391 سعيد)

قال (ولا بأس ببيع العصير ممن يعلم أنه يتخذه خمرا) ؛ لأن المعصية لا تقام بعينه بل بعد تغييره، بخلاف بيع السلاح في أيام الفتنة لأن المعصية تقوم بعينه. (العناية شرح الهداية، ج 6، دار الكتب العلمية)

وَحَمْلُ خَمْرٍ لِذِمِّيٍّ بِأَجْرٍ ) أَيْ جَازَ ذَلِكَ أَيْضًا ، وَهَذَا عِنْدَ أَبِي حَنِيفَةَ رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ ، وَقَالَا هُوَ مَكْرُوهٌ ؛ لِأَنَّهُ عَلَيْهِ الصَّلَاةُ وَالسَّلَامُ لَعَنَ فِي الْخَمْرِ عَشَرَةً ، وَعَدَّ مِنْهَا حَامِلَهَا ، وَلَهُ أَنَّ الْإِجَارَةَ عَلَى الْحَمْلِ ، وَهُوَ لَيْسَ بِمَعْصِيَةٍ ، وَلَا تَسَبُّبٍ لَهَا ، وَإِنَّمَا تَحْصُلُ الْمَعْصِيَةُ بِفِعْلِ فَاعِلٍ مُخْتَارٍ ، وَلَيْسَ الشُّرْبُ مِنْ ضَرُورَاتِ الْحَمْلِ ؛ لِأَنَّ حَمْلَهَا قَدْ يَكُونُ لِلْإِرَاقَةِ أَوْ التَّخْلِيلِ فَصَارَ كَمَا لَوْ اسْتَأْجَرَهُ لِعَصْرِ الْعِنَبِ أَوْ قَطْفِهِ ، وَالْحَدِيثُ مَحْمُولٌ عَلَى الْحَمْلِ الْمَقْرُونِ بِقَصْدِ الْمَعْصِيَةِ ، وَعَلَى هَذَا الْخِلَافِ إذَا آجَرَهُ دَابَّةً لِيَنْقُلَ عَلَيْهَا الْخَمْرَ أَوْ آجَرَهُ نَفْسَهُ لِيَرْعَى لَهُ الْخَنَازِيرَ فَإِنَّهُ يَطِيبُ لَهُ الْأَجْرُ عِنْدَ أَبِي حَنِيفَةَ رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ (تبين ج6 ص29 مكتبة امدادية

For more details on accepting remunerations from non-Muslims:

امداد الاحكام ج4 ص386 م دار العلوم كراتشي

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