Answered by: Imam Abdul-Malik Sheikh
السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته
Respected Muftiyaane Kiraam!
For the past many weeks, most Masajid were not open for Jumu’ah or were open on a very limited basis. With restrictions slowly easing, especially in parts of the USA, masajid are slowly starting to open up, be it in a limited fashion, Alhamdulillah.
If a masjid of a certain locality, which caters to musallis of that and many other nearby localities, [keep in mind, most of these nearby localities do not have their own masjid] begins to have Eid/Jumu’ah salah again (in accordance with local guidelines), which is generally open to the majority of the public, (maybe some restrictions for under 15’s, elderly, etc.) what would be the hukm of Jumu’ah salah for the people of that immediate locality and of the other surrounding localities?
Can people still continue to perform Jumu’ah in their homes/individual smaller groups? Would fear of contracting the virus be a valid excuse, even though the masjid is strictly following all the state guidelines & directives?
Although the masjid may not be able to cater to its regular crowd, it can still cater to a large enough crowd.
Let’s take a scenario where someone lives right behind or just a few blocks walking distances away, and can easily find a spot, would they be sinful for not coming to the masjid, or performing Jumu’ah/Zuhr at home?
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
In order for Jummah to be obligatory, the scholars state the following conditions must apply:
1-To be male
2-To be resident within the boundary of a town
3-To be in good health and physically able to perform Salah
4-The road should be safe
If the mosques can only accommodate the local people of the town, then only the locals will need to pray Juma and others can be exempt. Please note that you cannot pray Juma in the house.
We are living in unprecedented time and therefore, my advice is that people should follow the advice of the local Ulama and health officials with regards to safety. There is a legal principle that states that:
“Preventing harm takes precedence over benefit”
Therefore, we should keep ourselves safe and others safe by following health and religious guidance on large gatherings.
Only Allah knows best
Written by Imam Abdul-Malik Sheikh
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham
 Al-Lubab Fi Sharh al-Kitāb Vol.1 p.90, Dar Al-Mariah