Working in cooperative insurance in Western country
Fatwa No: 366514

  • Fatwa Date:3-1-2018 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 16, 1439
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Question

Assalaamu alaykum. Is it halal to work in a cooperative insurance company in a Western country? Fatwa No. 131305 on this website stated that it may be allowed to work for a cooperative insurance company, but the question in that case was related to working for a cooperative insurance company in Saudi Arabia. Can you please clarify this regarding working for a cooperative insurance company in a Western country, and what element to look for to determine permissibility, if applicable?May Allah reward you.

Answer

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  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger. 

Cooperative (Takaaful) insurance is permissible both in Islamic countries and in Western countries, and there is nothing wrong with working in it. There are some Islamic conditions that the insurance company must abide by, as stated by Shaykh Qaradaghi (also spelled Al-Qurra Daaghi):

1- The insured company should not violate Islamic laws in its contracts or transactions and should not deposit its money in interest-based banks.

2 - For the insurance contracts to be legitimate, they must be based on donation in principle, because contracts of pure compensation are affected by risk and Gharar (deceit), while donations are not affected by them. Allah says (what means): {O you who have believed, do not consume one another's wealth unjustly but only [in lawful] business by mutual consent. And do not kill yourselves [or one another]. Indeed, Allah is to you ever Merciful.} [Quran 4:29]

3. Insurance surplus shall be distributed on the participants when it exists as a result of the investment of participants' funds in legitimate fields.

The Shaykh mentioned the differences between cooperative insurance and commercial insurance as follows:

The Islamic Takaaful insurance:

1 - Is based on cooperation, friendship, and compassion among the participants, and the results of this insurance belong to the participants, whether profit or loss, so it is free of risk and deceit.

2 - The contributions of participants are invested in the available legitimate investment fields; so it is free from interest, which is forbidden in the Shariah.

3 - The value of the subscription is divided into two parts; one for Takaaful, and one for savings and investment.

4 - The returns (profits) from the investment of subscriptions are divided by the rules of Islamic Mudhaarabah.

5 - The nature of the relationship between the subscriber and the company is the participation in a cooperative system.

6 - In the event of the withdrawal of the subscriber, no amounts shall be deducted from the contributions allocated to savings and investment.

7 - Reinsurance shall be with Islamic reinsurers or others in accordance with the provisions of the Islamic Shariah.

8 - Terms, conditions, benefits and mechanism of the Takaaful system shall be free from any Islamic prohibition.

9 - The Company's management and employees have no interest in not paying any rights due under the terms of the Takaaful Contract.

These characteristics and differences between the two kinds can be found on the Shaykh's site.

Allah knows best.

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