What Islamic Laws Say About Distribution of Property?

The Quran provides explicit guidance on the distribution of property in Islam. Muslims are obliged to distribute their property according to the laws stated in the Quran. This ensures fairness and prevents favoring one individual over another.

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Primary Heirs

It’s crucial to know who the primary heirs of a property are. According to Sharia, married couples, parents, and orphans are considered heirs and cannot be excluded from inheritance. The secondary inheritor can be excluded under certain scenarios.

The provisions can be divided into three categories:

  1. Quota Heirs – These include 4 males (husband, father, brother, grandfather) and females includes (mother, daughter, wife, sister, grandmother, granddaughter).
  2. The Asaba – The persons who assume after the quota heirs have received their share is known as Asaba. According to some sects, the daughter, father, and granddaughter are part of ASABA and are not considered quota heirs.
  3. Dhawu al Arham – The blood relatives tend to call Dhawu al Ahram or you can say them an extended family, these are not included in the quota or Asaba, they include female cousins, aunts, nieces, and maternal grandfathers.

Property Distribution in Fara’id

According to the Quran, wealth or property does not belong to an individual but is a gift from Allah and He has determined the inheritance shares for each relative. The deceased’s wealth is divided into two parts – Fara’id and Wasiyah. Fara’id contains two-thirds of the property, you must divide Fara’id as per Sharia.

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Shares Under Fara’id

The Fara’id divides endowment into fixed and variable categories. The spouse and parents receive fixed shares. The percentage of inheritance for each person in the fixed group is:

  • The surviving husband receives 1/2 of the deceased’s assets, 1/4 if there are children.
  • The surviving wife receives 1/4 of the assets, 1/8 if there are children.
  • The deceased parents will receive 1/6 of a share.
  • The remaining property will go to their family. 2 third part of the property will go to the sons and the remaining one will go to the daughter, respectively.
  • Sons receive two shares for every share that a daughter gets, regardless of age.

The distribution of assets among the deceased’s parents is equal, regardless of gender, with the understanding that the male’s portion will be spent on the family. Following Shariah, There are no restrictions on a daughter’s inheritance.

The Wasiyyah

In Islam, Wasiyyah or Wasiya is a statement made by an individual during their lifetime that outlines their property and the instructions to be followed according to Islamic law after their passing. However, fixed heirs cannot be supplemented with a portion of the Wasiyyah. Some persons often give wasiyyah to charity, other relatives, or that child who was adopted and they don’t get a fixed share. Donating to Islamic schools and mosques or organizations helping orphans or providing safe drinking water is a common practice. Some Muslims choose to keep all their assets within the family, and in some cases, it is encouraged.

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To conclude, the Islamic law on the distribution of property is detailed and precise, with clear guidelines on how the deceased’s wealth should be divided among primary heirs and extended family members. The wealth is divided into two parts: Fara’id and Wasiyyah. The Fara’id is two-thirds of the deceased’s property and is divided among fixed heirs such as the spouse, parents, and children. The Wasiyyah is a part of the will and can be allocated as the person sees fit, subject to some restrictions. Following the guidelines outlined in the Quran ensures fairness and equality in the distribution of property.

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