Child Support

Child Support

Question:

AlsalamAlaikum,

Jazakum Allah Khair for getting back to me. 

He works at a Riba bank and his role is a relationship manager at corporate banking so he assesses companies and gives them interest bearing loans for their operations. Other sources that are his, rental income that’s very minimal and I don’t know if his family gives him anything. Technically, he doesn’t need much from his family because his salary is reasonable. During the marriage they were several occasions where I heard that he had asked his family to support him, not sure if this is still going on or necessary in this context. 

Generally speaking I have enough money to sustain necessities for now, but I want to know what should I do with this money if it’s not Halal and how can I use it lawfully by purifying it or so. I’m worried about the impact of riba money on me and my children and our spirituality/religiosity and ability to connect with Allah (swt) by doing what pleases his SubhanhuwaTalla. I also don’t want to deprive them from their rights.

I hope this clarifies the situation, looking forward to hearing back from you. 

Answer:

In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Sister in Islam, 

Jazakallah Khayran for getting back to us. 

Before proceeding to the matter in question, it is essential to clarify a few points.

1) Receiving income from a bank 

2) Employment that involves one to indulge in Haram

1)  While a large portion of a bank’s income is sourced from riba, riba is not its only source of money. A bank’s money is composed of deposits, revenues from valid services, and debt receivables. 

In principle, when unlawful money is mixed with lawful money, then two situations can apply. (a) the lawful and unlawful money are entirely separate from one another, or (b) they are mixed with one another.  

In scenario (a), the majority of the wealth is taken into consideration before accepting or taking money. This is because the money would either be entirely lawful or entirely unlawful. Hence, if the majority is Haram, one is relatively certain that one is receiving Haram, and if the majority is halal, one is relatively certain that one is receiving Haram. 

This is all in the situation where one is not certain if the money is coming from the lawful amount or unlawful amount. If one is certain that the money is coming exclusively from the haram account or vice versa, then the ruling will not take majority or minority into consideration. Rather, due to certainty, the ruling will depend on the account the money is coming from. 

In scenario (b), where both halal and haram are mixed, the majority of the wealth is not considered. Instead, one needs to assess whether one can receive such an amount from the halal portion of the individual’s income. If one is relatively confident that it is possible, it will be permissible to accept that money. If not, then it will not be permissible. For instance, Zaid has $20 in his account. $9 is from a halal source and $11 from a haram source. Zaid gives Amr $5 as a gift. As the $5 can come from the halal $9, it will be permissible for Amr to accept the gift.

This is because money does not become specified. Meaning, the $11 of Haram in the account does not become distinguished from the $9 in the account. Hence, when one mixes both amounts together, there is no way to distinguish one from another. Thus, one considers the possibility of it coming from the Halal income rather than considering the majority. In contrast to the first scenario where it was possible to distinguish both amounts.

Accordingly, as the bank’s money is composed of both lawful and unlawful, one would need to assess the possibility of receiving the income from its lawful sources. Given the multimillion-dollar lawful money that the bank holds, it would be incorrect to assume that the banks’ salaries are automatically unlawful. Hence, generally, the income itself from a bank would be lawful. One would need to assess the position one holds within the bank. If the position involves direct involvement in interest-based transactions, then working such a position would be Haram. However, if that is not the case, then the position would be halal, and the income would be lawful.[i]

2) If one’s employment involves one to indulge in Haram, it would be impermissible to continue such employment. In regards to the wage received, then there are two scenarios.

a)  A person has been hired specifically to carry out that task and is being paid for that task no matter how much time it would take. For instance, one is explicitly hired to brew beer. In this scenario, the income would be unlawful.

b)  A person has been hired for his time, and the employment happens to involve Haram elements. The wage of such a person is not dependent on that task but rather on his time. For instance, if a person is hired to answer inbound calls involving interest-based sales, then whether a person receives calls or not, they get paid for their time. In this scenario, the employment will be Haram, as it involves one to indulge in Haram. However, as the income is in lieu of his time, the income will be halal, although one will be sinning in continuing this employment. 

In the enquired situation, your ex-husband’s income most probably falls in the second scenario. That is, he is being paid for his time and not necessarily his tasks. Accordingly, although his employment may be impermissible, the income received is lawful. Consequently, it will be permissible for you to accept the money coming from him for child support.

It is important to note that although the money is being given to you, it essentially belongs to the children. You have been entrusted with that amount. Thus, no step should be taken to deprive the children of receiving the amount they are entitled to.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Hammad Ibn Ismail Jogiat

Student - Darul Iftaa

Cambridge, Ontario, Canada

Checked and Approved by,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

[i]

الفقه البيوع: مكتبة دار العلوم كراتشي: 2:1032

وقد اشتهر على الألسن ؛ أن حكم التعامل مع من كان ماله مخلوطا بالحلال والحرام أنه إن كان الحلال فيها أكثر ، جاز التعامل معه بقبول هديته وتعاقد البيع والشراء معه إن ، وبذلك صدرت بعض الفتاوی . ولكن ما يتحقق بعد سبر کلام فقهاء الحنفية في هذا الموضوع أن اعتبار الغلبة إنما هو فيما اذا كان الحلال متميزاعن الحرام عند صاحبه، ولا يعلم المتعامل معه أن ما يعطيه من الحلال أو من الحرام ؛ فحينئذ تعتبر الغلية ، بمعنی أنه إن كان أكثر ماله حلالا ، يفرض أن ما يعطيه من  الحلال ، والعكس بالعكس ، كما قدمنا نصوصه في الصورة الأولى . أما إذا كان الحلال مخلوطا بالحرام دون تمييز أحدهما بالآخر ، فإنه عبرة بالغلبة في هذه الحالة في مذهب الحنفية ، بل يحل الانتفاع من المخلوط بقدر الحلال ، سواء أكان الحلال قليلا أم كثيرة ، ويدل على ذلك ما يأتي

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