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Travel & Residence

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Qibla.com

Answered by Shaykh Abu Usamah

If a person travels to another place, for work reasons or other, and it is as far as the fiqh requirement from his residence in distance, and he originally planned to stay for a week to where he has travelled, can he shorten his prayers?

2. If then he has to stay for one week extra, which was not intended in the first place, can he shorten his prayers for the extra week?

3. and this kept happening, in other words he stayed in the new destination for months or years but was not sure of when he was going to return home, and it is not his place of new residence, can he still shorten his prayers till his return home or till it becomes his place of abode?

the reason I ask is a person is waiting for a decision on his application for citizenship in Britain but has not been granted after 5 years, can he shorten his prayers on the reason that their is not any surety in his status in Britain (thus he is on a journey and not resident in this country).

Answer:
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Al-Salam alaykum

The PRINCIPLE with respect to becoming a muqïm is as follows:

A traveller (musàfir) will not become a legally considered a resident (muqïm) until he firmly intends to stay at a place for a period of fifteen days from the time he makes this intention.

Based on the above principle if the person in Question did not, at any point, make the firm intention of staying there for fifteen days he will remain a musàfir irrespective of how many days he stays at that place.

However if he had intended to stay in Britain for fifteen days or more when he had first arrived or at any time thereafter then he is a muqïm even though he is now not sure whether he will gain citizenship or not.

Abu Usamah

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