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Wasting Time at Work and Personal Use of Its Resources

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org

Answered by Shaykh Faraz A. Khan

Question: (1) I am an employee for the government. For a certain task, despite procrastination, I performed it successfully within the extended deadline. My concern is whether I have fulfilled my duties under shariah and if not, how should I go about redressing the situation?

(2) Also, there is a usual norm of using material for personal use in the organization. If a person has printed personal stuff from the office (government in this case) what is the extent of doing so and how to determine if one has transgressed and how should it be redressed? How should one give back to the organization knowing that once what the government has allocated for use is hard to return to their accounts?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

I pray this finds you in the best of health and states.

(1) If the task is performed within the deadline given, and according to the dictates given by the employer, then one has fulfilled one’s duty as an employee.

(2) The criteria of permissibility returns to what is allowed based on the mutual agreement between employer and employee — whether explicitly delineated in a contract, or implicitly understood from the customary norm of the company.

If there is any confusion in this regard, the employer/company should be asked. As long as they accept what you do, it is fine according to the Sacred Law (assuming it does not contravene the Sacred Law). Yet one should exercise caution with respect to personal conduct and “benefits” in and from work.

Also, in general, if any money is wrongfully obtained and returning it proves difficult, one simply gives that amount in charity without hope or expectation of reward.

And Allah knows best.

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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