Stole Father's Money When She Was Young and When In High School
Fatwa No: 445471

Question

Assalamu Aleikum. I used to take my father's money without him knowing when I was younger and this matter is tormenting me greatly. I read in a fatwa that my repentance will not be accepted unless I return to my father what is rightfully his even without him knowing and that's what I'm planning to do insha'Allah. The problem is that I don't remember the exact amount that I stole from him as it was something I kept doing during my high school years. Please tell me what to do so that my repentance will be accepted.

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.

You are not sinful for what you had stolen before reaching puberty; the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “The pen is lifted (stopped from writing the deeds) from three kinds of people: the sleeping person until he wakes up, the child till he grows up (reaches the age of puberty); the mentally-handicapped or insane person till he becomes able to reason.” [Ahmad, Abu Daawood, At-Tirmithi, An-Nasaa’i and Ibn Maajah; Al-Haakim: Saheeh]

However, the fact that you were not sinful, does not mean that you do not guarantee what you have stolen; therefore, you must give back the money to your father.

With regard to whatever you have stolen after you became pubescent (reached the age of puberty), then you must repent from it and return the money.

The view that we adopt here in Islamweb is that whoever has stolen money and does not know its exact amount, then he must strive in estimating it by paying what he most predominantly thinks that he is cleared from liability. Thinking most predominantly serves as knowledge when one is unable to know the exact amount. Allah Says (what means): {So fear Allah as much as you are able.} [Quran 64:16]

Therefore, if you don’t know the exact amount of money that you stole from your father, then strive in estimating it, and return to him what you most predominantly think that you are cleared from liability.

For more benefit on stealing money before the age of puberty, please refer to Fataawa 92178 and 87580.

Allah knows best.

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