Making up years of missed prayers according to one's ability
Fatwa No: 334915

Question

With reference to fatwa 105182, it was mentioned that a person must pray two days worth of Qadha prayers, each day, in order to not be considered negligent. I have been trying to complete my past Qadha prayers (missed over the years), but I am not able to complete two days worth of Qadha prayers every day. Am I considered sinful and blameworthy as a result? Some days, I can pray one day's worth of Qadha prayers, some days more than that, and some days less than that. (Sometimes I am unable to pray any Qadha prayer.) However, now I am concerned that I am gaining additional sins because of not praying the minimum mentioned on Islamweb. I appreciate your valuable advice.

Answer

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

What you mentioned about the necessity of making up two days of missed prayers each day is the view of the Maaliki School of jurisprudence. Other jurists, such as the jurists of the Hanbali School of jurisprudence, stated that the obligation for a person is to make up prayers in a way that he is not hurt physically or harmed in regard to a livelihood that he needs, regardless of whether he makes up more or less than two days.

Based on this view, you are not negligent if what prevents you from reaching the mentioned limit is work that you need to do, or a harm that you fear for yourself. In any case, you should endeavor to make up the missed prayers according to your ability while seeking the help of Allaah.

You should know that making up for deliberately missed prayers is a matter of difference of opinion among the scholars, and the view of the majority of them is that it is an obligation to make up for them, and this is more prudent and more certain for clearing oneself of their liability.

For more benefit, please refer to fatwa 83724.

Allaah knows best.

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