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Stats: 16,665 members, 64,003 Topics, 14,548 Comments. Date: March 24, 2019, 11:47 am

Ruling On Handling The Wealth And Property Of Someone Who Is Severely Autistic

Nigeria Student Forum / Books/Literature/Writing / Muslim's Forum / Ruling On Handling The Wealth And Property Of Someone Who Is Severely Autistic (23) Views

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Rufai Oladimeji
Lagos State University
100Level, Nigeria.

We are three brothers. I am the
eldest. The one younger to me is
severely autistic. He understands
almost nothing about the world.
We’ve tried all treatments ever
since he was diagnosed with severe
autism (18 years in all) yet he
remains severely autistic. He can
neither read, nor write nor can he
interact with anyone. What will his
share in property be? And as far as
charity, khairaat, Haj, Eid sacrifices
etc are concerned, are those duties
waived off for him? My mother has
5 sisters and 2 brothers. Due to the
societal context none of the sisters
had gotten any share in property.
All the property was divided only
amongst the two brothers. Both of
them are well-off. What’s the ruling
concerning this situation; are the
sisters morally obligated to remind
the brothers of the Islamic rulings
and seek their rights in property?
And should the brothers themselves
come forward to give their sisters
their rightful share in property?


Praise be to Allah.
If the autism is so severe that the
person affected may be described as
having an intellectual disability, or
he does not have any power of
discernment or ability to assess
what is going on around him, then
in this case he is exempt from
religious obligations, and the Pen is
lifted from him. Being of sound
mind is the foundation of
accountability; if that is lost due to
sickness or a disorder, then
accountability is waived. The
Prophet (blessings and peace of
Allah be upon him) said: “The Pen
has been lifted from three: from the
sleeper until he awakens, from the
child until he reaches puberty and
from the insane person until he
comes to his senses.” Narrated by
Abu Dawood in as-Sunan (4403);
classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in
Saheeh Abi Dawood .
If he is of sound mind and has the
power of discernment, then he is
We have discussed this in detail in
the answer to question no. 214189.
On that you may base your decision
on whether to ask him to pray, fast,
offer the sacrifice and so on. If
religious duties are waived in his
case, then he should not be asked
to do any of them.
If he is still accountable, he may be
asked to do whatever he can of
With regard to Hajj, Hajj may be
done on his behalf using his wealth,
if he can afford it financially but is
physically unable to do it.
If he is able to understand and is
able to do Hajj for himself, then he
must do it, and it will not be
acceptable for someone to do Hajj
on his behalf.
With regard to zakaah, it is due
from his wealth, even if he has no
power of reasoning and is not of
sound mind, because zakaah is due
on the wealth of children and the
See the answer to question no.

If your brother has property, and is
of sound mind, then he may dispose
of his property however he wishes.
If he is not of sound mind, then his
property should be looked after and
guarded for him, and no one has the
right to dispose of it except in ways
that are in the best interests of its
owner – who is not of sound mind –
such as spending on his
maintenance if he needs that.
Zakaah must be paid on his wealth,
if it is the kind of wealth on which
zakaah is due.
In al-Mawsoo‘ah al-Fiqhiyyah
(45:162) it says: There is no
difference of opinion among the
fuqahaa’ concerning the fact that it
is not permissible for a guardian to
dispose of the wealth of his ward
(the one who is under his care),
except by way of taking care of it
and protecting it, and in a way that
serves the interests of the one
under his care, because of the
hadith, “There should be neither
harming nor reciprocating harm.”
Based on the above, they give
examples of what does not serve
the interests of the one who is
under the care of a guardian, such
as giving something (of that
person’s wealth to a third party)
with nothing in return, bequeathing
it, giving it in charity, manumitting
a slave and doing favours to the
other party when engaged in
business transactions. The guardian
has no right to do any of these
things (with the wealth of his
The guardian is liable for whatever
he gives away of that wealth,
whether as a gift or charity, or
manumitting a slave, or doing
favours to the other party in
business transactions, or whatever
he spent on maintenance that was
more than needed according to
reasonable terms, or that he gave
to a dishonest person, because he is
removing part of his ward’s wealth
with nothing in return, which is
pure harm…
There is no difference of opinion
among the fuqahaa’ that the
guardian must spend on his ward
from the ward’s wealth, and he
must also spend on those for whose
care his ward is responsible,
according to reasonable terms,
without extravagance or stinginess,
because Allah, may He be exalted,
says (interpretation of the
meaning): “And [they are] those
who, when they spend, do so not
excessively or sparingly but are
ever, between that, [justly]
moderate” [al-Furqaan 25:67] .
The Shaafa‘is and Hanbalis added
that if he is stingy and spends
sparingly, he is sinning, and if he is
extravagant and spends excessively,
he is sinning, and he is liable for his
negligence. End quote.

It is obligatory to divide the estate
as Allah, may He be exalted, divided
it, and it is not permissible to
deprive any heir of his or her share.
Allah has issued a warning to the
one who does that, as He says,
after explaining how the estate is to
be divided (interpretation of the
“These are the limits [set by] Allah,
and whoever obeys Allah and His
Messenger will be admitted by Him
to gardens [in Paradise] under
which rivers flow, abiding eternally
therein; and that is the great
And whoever disobeys Allah and His
Messenger and transgresses His
limits - He will put him into the Fire
to abide eternally therein, and he
will have a humiliating punishment”
[an-Nisaa’ 4:13-14] .

Your mother and her sisters have
the right to demand their rights
from their brothers, and they may
take them to court for that.
The brothers must give their sisters
their share of the inheritance in
And Allah knows best.


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