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Misgivings regarding one’s performance at work… and the matter of taking paid sick leave withou

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Qibla.com

Answered by Shaykh Muhammad ibn Adam al-Kawthari

I was wondering if there is a way to undo one’s errors regarding halal and haram. In specific, I have had jobs during the past years, where I could not work with full concentration due to spiritual problems and sometimes due to laziness. My productivity was not as it should have been. Recently, I’ve been working at a retail store and I took paid sick leave for two days although I could’ve managed to work somehow. I was not feeling well, but only mood wise. Now, I have realized my error, and wish to repent for my two errors: first due to lack of focus and second due to lack of pure intention. I am thinking of paying back all the money I’ve earned for the days I was not really working (which amounts to thousands of dollars), but I’m worried that in retail business, for example, one thing can set off another, and I don’t know what would be the actual loss I would’ve caused to the company in question. If it were a question of paying a fixed amount of money, I would have no problem, but the problem is that it’s hard for me to determine and evaluate the exact damage. I would greatly appreciate any suggestions since I am in great agony.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

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

Your regret and remorse on such errors in the past and your intention to make up for them is surely commendable. May Allah bless and assist you. However, be cautious in not becoming too paranoid about the whole situation.

If you are certain that you took wages for jobs which you did not carry out altogether, then that amount must be paid back. Merely not working with full concentration will not make the wages unlawful. Similarly, if you took paid sick leave without actually being sick, then that should also be paid back.

Therefore, all the wealth that you acquired in such a manner, meaning without actually carrying out the job or wrongfully taking paid sick leave, must be paid back to the owner/s of the company where you worked.

If you have doubts about your work, as you have stated in your question, then you may speak to the owners of the company and ask them to forgive you. If they are willing to forgive you for everything, then you don’t even need to pay anything back.

Thus, be cautious about this matter but at the same time avoid any unnecessary complications. If you are paying the money back, then make a precautionary estimation, pay it, and avoid further misgivings.

And Allah knows best

Muhammad ibn Adam al-Kawthari
Darul Iftaa, Leicester, UK

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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