I am a teacher attached to Ministry of Education and every month a deduction is taken out of my salary for a health insurance(Unimed ) attached to the M&M Insurance. This insurance is compulsory on all government workers. It works in such a manner that if I were to visit a doctor, I walk with a form and the doctor fills it out stating the illness and her fee and then I have to submit it to T.T.U.T.A.’s office. This claim is processed at the Insurance firm and a fraction of the doctor’s fee is paid off by the insurance to me via a cheque.
Is it permissible for me to use this money and if not to whom should I give it to?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.
According to our understanding, Unimed (health insurance) is a facility which has been introduced by the government for teachers or government workers. Upon submitting a claim, an amount of the medical fee of the person is paid by the insurance company.
On the outset it must be understood that all forms of insurances prevalent are unlawful (haram) according to Shari’ah, for they have either an element of interest (riba) or chancing (qimar), both of which have been explicitly and sternly forbidden by Allah Ta’ala in the Qur’an and numerous Ahadith.
However, it would be permissible for one to have insurance up to the minimum level required when it is a dire necessity like that of being the law of the land etc.
As you stated in the query, the insurance is compulsory on government workers. The government by law deduct a certain amount from the employee’s salary every month or year. It is not a form of insurance where premiums are paid. A percentage is cut from the wages of the individual involuntarily, thus possession according to Shari’ah will not be established; therefore, the money received will be considered as a gift or a bonus.
Due the insurance being compulsory, and you have no control of your money being deducted and placed in the health insurance, it will be permissible to submit medical claims and accept all the payments from it.
And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best
Mufti Arshad Ali
This answer was collected from Fatwa-tt.com, which is operated by the Darul Iftaa of Jaamia Madinatul Uloom (Trinidad and Tobago) under the advice and guidance of Mufti Ebrahim Desai (Daamat Barakaatuhum) of South Africa.