Taking back a gift

  • Author: Fatwa no. 87766
  • Publish date:03/07/2011
  • Sections:FATWA FOR ALL
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Are we allowed in our religion to take back something that you gave away to someone? Also, I have a cousin who is 13 years old; I used to take care of him when he was young. Do I have to wearing around from him or can I do what I want until he is 15?


All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

It is not permissible to take back a gift if it was possessed and accepted by the person to whom it was given.  The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: “The person who takes back a gift is like a dog which vomits, then eats what it vomited.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim] Except for the gift which was given with the intention of compensation, and it was not recompensed by the person to whom it was given, then in this case one can take it back.

Imaam Maalik  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him further supported this with the narration of Umar Ibnn Al-Khattaab, may Allah be pleased with him, who said: 'Whoever gives a gift to a kinship, or as a charity, then he should not take it back, and whoever donates a gift with the intention of getting the reward then he can take it back if he is not pleased with it.'

Ibn Abi Zayd  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him said: ‘The recipient of what is given for compensation has to pay its value or give it back and if it is consumed or lost, then the giver can ask for a refund.'

As regards the Hijab, it is obligatory to wear it in front of your cousin if he is not a suckling Mahram, when he becomes an adult or when he reaches the age of 13 years old and above.

Allah knows best. 

Fatwa answered by: The Fatwa Center at Islamweb

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