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Breaking voluntary fasts when one didn’t wake up for suhur

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Qibla.com

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

What if one intends to fast an optional fast at night before going to bed and then the next morning oversleeps and wakes up for fajr but misses suhoor.
1- Can one decide at this point (after fajr has come in) not to fast for the day or would they be breaking their fast if they decided not to fast at that point?
2- Similarly, can one refrain from making an intention to fast for fear that they will not want to fast in the morning and just wait until morning, even if it is after fajr, to make their intention?

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

[1] It is permitted to break a voluntary (not obligatory) fast with an general excuse, such as when one didn’t manage to wake up for suhur.

[2] It is valid to make intention for both current (not make up) obligatory fasts and also voluntary fasts even after Fajr time, up to the mid-day, provided that one did nothing that would invalidate the fast any time from Fajr time.

For details, see:

         Breaking a voluntary fast

2-      The Fiqh of Fasting


The intention of fasting is necessary. If a person stays away from all those things that break one’s fast without an intention, the fast will not be valid.

It is not necessary to express the intention verbally as intention simply means to intend. Thus, the firm determination of the heart will suffice. However, it is better to express the intention verbally also: Bi sawmi ghadin nawaytu (‘And I intend to fast tomorrow’)

The time for intention lasts up to midday for specifically obligatory, specifically necessary, sunna and recommended fasts. This is mid-way between the beginning of fajr time to sunset (the beginning of maghrib time).

The intention for non-specifically obligatory and non-specifically necessary fasts must be made before the beginning of fajr time.

[F: The time for intention starts from Maghrib time of the night before.]

And Allah alone gives success.

Faraz Rabbani

This answer was indexed from Qibla.com, which used to have a repository of Islamic Q&A answered by various scholars. The website is no longer in existence. It has now been transformed into a learning portal with paid Islamic course offering under the brand of Kiflayn.

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