Assalamualaikum wbt ustaz. I want to ask, I used to have an online business. However, I stopped my business because I’m busy with other commitments. My stock of watches is stored in a storage space at my house. My question is, is business zakat applicable to the stored watches that I haven’t sold? Hope for an explanation. Thank you.
Waalaikumussalam wrt. wbt.
Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.
Islam is a religion that encourages people to help and protect each other. This is proven through the economic system set by syarak for Muslims which fulfils certain conditions. Zakat means a certain amount is taken from a portion of a person’s property which is wajib to be distributed to certain people when certain conditions are fulfilled. (See al-Fiqh al-Manhaji, 2/11 and al-Taqrirat al-Sadidah, Qasm al-Ibadat, pg. 395)
Among the evidences of the obligation of business zakat is:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَنفِقُوا مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا كَسَبْتُمْ
“O you who have believed, spend from the good things which you have earned,”
Surah al-Baqarah (267)
Imam Ibn Kathir cited the words of Mujahid which states that what is meant in the verse is zakat on business. (See Tafsir al-Quran al-‘Azim, 1/697). Imam al-Tobari and Imam al-Mawardi also cited the same opinion which said that it is zakat on business. (See Jami’ al-Bayan fi Takwil al-Quran, 5/558 and Tafsir al-Mawardi, 1/342)
Syeikh al-Maraghi said, donate your wealth from your earnings in business and agriculture, whether it is from grains, fruits and others. (See Tafsir al-Maraghi, 2/612)
The same is stated in a hadith narrated by Samurah bin Jundub RA:
كانَ رَسولُ اللَّهِ صلَّى اللَّهُ عليهِ وسلَّمَ يأمُرُنا أن نُخْرِجَ الزَّكاةَ مِمَّا نعدُّهُ للبَيعِ
“The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) used to command us to pay Zakah from (the goods) we had prepared for sale.”
Sunan Abu Daud (1562). Ibn ‘Abdul al-Bar state the sanad of the hadith is hasan in al-Istizkar.
We include the list of our previous related article:
- Zakat for Business Goods and Its Conditions. It can be accessed through the link: https://muftiwp.gov.my/ms/artikel/irsyad-fatwa/edisi-ramadhan/1929-barang-perniagaan-yang-dizakatkan-dan-syarat
Answering the above question, business zakat is only wajib when it fulfils the following conditions:
- Ownership of the property changed hands through akad and trade. For example, buying and selling, renting, dowry and others. If the ownership is through inheritance, will or hibah, then it is not considered as business goods.
- When he owned it, the owner must have a continuous intention for the goods to be sold. If not, then the goods are not considered as business goods even if he intends to sell it afterwards. If he intends to sell it when he bought it but then just store it without selling it, then the goods are not considered as business goods and zakat is not applicable to it. (See al-Fiqh al-Manhaji, 2/27)
According to the above conditions, business zakat is not applicable to goods which are just stored and not sold. The reason is the intention of wanting to sell something without the act of trading it is not considered as running a business. Thus, the goods stored do not fulfil the wajib conditions of business zakat.
In conclusion, we are inclined to state that the business zakat is not applicable to stored goods that are not sold. Thus, the status of such goods is only considered as stored personal stock.
Hopefully, the explanation given will open our minds and understanding in living following the commandments of Islam. Amin.