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Person Causing Damage is Obliged to Offer Compensation

Answered according to Shafi'i Fiqh by Darul Iftaa Jordan
After I had a car accident, I sustained an acute right hand injury : torn tendons, fracture and skin mutilation at the elbow joint. By law, I`m entitled to receive compensation from the driver, the insurance company and the car owner. However, I want nothing from the driver, but I will take whatever compensation I can get, by law, from the insurance company, and I`m planning to claim a compensation from the car`s owner as well because I was harmed both physically and psychologically. Is that permissible?

Answer:
All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of The Worlds, and may His peace and blessing be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

In principle, compensation for damage is liable on the person who causes the damage because his/her action itself is what made the compensation obligatory. Al-Imam As-Subkhi(May Allah have mercy on him) stated, "Undoubtedly, damage is what makes compensation obligatory because when something is damaged, it ceases to be as beneficial as it used to, and, here, lies aggression and harm. Allah, The Almighty, said, "If then any one transgresses the prohibition against you, Transgress ye likewise against him. But fear God, and know that God is with those who restrain themselves."{Al-Baqarah,194}."{BadayeaSanayea}.

It is prohibited to take compensation from the owner of the car because compensation for damage is liable only on the person who caused it, and because taking it from someone else is tantamount to eating up people`s wealth unjustly.

In conclusion, compensation is incumbent upon the person who caused the damage(Driver) and the insurance company is the party that pays on his behalf. As for the owner of the car, he isn`t liable for any compensation. And Allah knows best.

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

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