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Changing Intentions after Starting the Fardh

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Shaykh Umer Khan


If a person started praying and he was supposed to be praying Zuhr. He realized after 1 rakah, that he made intention for Asr. Should he break his salah after the first rakah or should he finish two rakats then make Salam and read his Zuhr?

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful



The intention for an obligatory (Fard) prayer cannot be changed after it has started [Radd al-Muhtar, 2/95]. Therefore, if one intends the wrong obligatory prayer, he must restart the prayer with the correct intention. So repeating the prayer in this situation is correct.

While a voluntary (nafl) prayer requires the intention for prayer, the intention does not need to be specific, and can instead be unspecific (mutlaq) [Bada’iʻ al-Sana’iʻ 1/127, Al-Hidayah, 1/298]. Hence, if there is enough time to complete the obligatory Zuhr prayer after it, the person may complete two rakʻaats voluntary prayers and then make Salam.

Only Allah knows best

Written by Shaykh Umer Khan

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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