Offering the expiation on behalf of someone
Fatwa No: 69439


There is a young man who is 18 years old. He has never fasted. The reason is that he has diabetes and takes medicine every day. If he is not able to fast, can he offer the expiation for his fast-breaking? What if he cannot afford it? Can his parents pay it on his behalf?


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, is His slave and messenger.

The young man mentioned in the question must consult a specialized doctor. This is because diabetes is of different degrees; some of which are mild and fasting has no effect on it, while other types are incurable and worsen because of fasting. If the doctor tells the person in question that fasting would not affect his health, then he is required to fast. In addition, he is required to make up for all the days of fasting that he has missed since the signs of puberty have appeared on him. He is also required to offer the expiation for every day of fasting that he delayed after its due time. The expiation is an amount of food that weighs about 750 gm. The food should be of a type that is commonly consumed in his home town. Recipients of the expiation must be poor Muslims.

If the doctor decides that this person suffers from an incurable type of diabetes and is not able to fast, then the obligation of fasting drops and the person is required to offer an expiation for breaking the fast. The amount and description of the expiation is the same as the just-mentioned expiation that is due for delaying the observance of missed fasts. The obligation of the expiation drops if the person cannot afford it. Finally, it is acceptable that someone else pays the expiation on the sick person's behalf, whether this person is one of his parents or anyone else.

Allaah Knows best.

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