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Ruling on Deducting from Donations for Administrators of Charitable Societies

Answered as per Shafi'i Fiqh by Darul Iftaa Jordan
Is it permissible for the administrators of a charitable society to take a percentage from the donations?

All perfect praise be to Allah; and may His blessings and peace be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions. An authorized person is trusted, so the donations paid to him are a trust that he is obligated to preserve and deliver to its eligible recipients; otherwise, he shall bear the burden of betrayal, and if he doesn`t administer it as should be or fails to do so, then he has transgressed and sinned; therefore, it remains a debt that he must be pay off to attain redemption. Allah says {what means}: “O ye that believe! betray not the trust of God and the Apostle, nor misappropriate knowingly things entrusted to you.”{Al-Annfal/27}.” It is imperative that the authorized delivers these donations to their eligible recipients, and doesn`t benefit from them, even if he is one of the eight categories eligible to receive Zakaah, such as being poor or needy. This is because he isn`t allowed to make personal benefit out of what he has been entrusted with, and giving donations, in principle, is determined by the intention of the donor and the terms set by him. A donor is like an endower, and in principle the terms set by the endower must be adhered to, so money must be spent as he sees fit. Moreover, the donor could refrain from making any donations once he realizes that the person collecting them takes a share. In addition, a proxy in alms isn`t considered amongst those employed to administer the funds in order to be entitled to receive an eighth, because they must be appointed by the ruler; therefore, if he(proxy) wants to take anything ,then he must seek the permission of the donors. If he doesn`t , then he has betrayed the trust of God and succumbed to the whispers of the devil. In this case, he should make repentance and seek forgiveness. Resolution No.(202) by the Board of Iftaa`, Research and Islamic Studies states that it is impermissible for administrators to take any percentage from the funds of Zakaah and this ruling applies to charity as well. And Allah knows best.

This answer was collected from the official government Iftaa Department of Jordan.

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