Q: Kindly guide us through the following issues and questions.
• Family members are made up: 1. Father 2. Mother 3. Daughter 4. Son
Father and Mother are equal shareholders regarding a house. Both parents during their lifetime gives the son the house as a gift. Both children are informed and aware of the action. The son agrees and takes the gift (house) and also takes total responsibility to all the affairs regarding the home and regarding income and expenses of the house approximately 6 years before the father passes away. However when the gift (house) was given to the son it was given verbally so in other words there is no written proof but there are two witnesses to this action. It must also be brought to attention that when the gift was given, both children were not present at the same time but as mentioned before both children do acknowledge the action (the home as a gift to the son). The daughter however was not happy about this when both parents informed her but did not confront the son (her brother) immediately. Shortly after the father passed away the daughter started to show her disapproval and informed her mother that she does not agree to this and insists on getting her share in terms of inheritance according to the Islamic sharia.
• Does the house still stand as a gift even when it was given verbally only?
• Is the daughter’s disapproval valid and does she get any share according to the sharia?
• If the daughters claim is valid what will be her share?
And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.
Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)