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Zakat: Don’t know if wealth is above or below nisab

Answered as per Shafi'i Fiqh by Qibla.com

Answered by Sidi Sulaiman Hart

  What are the ramifications of fullfilling the obligations of zakat if one doesn’t know if his/her wealth was above or below the nisab.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

This person would need to find out how much money he/she had (bank statements etc) for the period in Question.  Then for every year where he/she had and amount of money which is above the nisab (approx US$98) 2.5% has to be paid in zakaat.  Do this for every year.  (note that if the amount of money you have at any one time falls below the nisab you start counting the year again.

Note: Every year after the first will work out slightly less than exactly 2.5% (There are calculations that are more complicated)  It is however better to calculate it this way, any excess will be considered Sadaqa (charity)

Note: The nisab was calculated on the price of Silver, as it is the more cautious ruling.

May Allah Forgive us.

Sulaiman Hart,
Amman, Jordan.

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