Bought a car on credit before becoming a Muslim
Fatwa No: 89652

Question

I have just become Muslim 11months ago Al-Humdulillaah, but before that I took a loan from a bank and bought a car. I am finding it difficult to pay the repayments to the bank £8000 and do not know what to do. I have been advised to sell the car to pay back the loan but I won't get more than £3000 for it. I use the car for work and taking my children back and forth to school as I am a single mum. Please advise me the best way forward.

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 is His slave and Messenger. We ask Allaah to exalt his mention as well as that of his family and all his companions.

 

First of all, all Perfect Praise be to Allaah, Who guided you to Islam and we ask Him to make you firm and steadfast on this religion and grant you religious knowledge. You have to know that by embracing Islam, all your previous sins are forgiven and even your loan with interest. The evidence about this is the following:

Imaam Muslim may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him reported that 'Amr Ibn Al-'Aas  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him said: "When Allaah instilled the love of Islam in my heart, I came to the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) and said: "Stretch out your right hand so that I may pledge my allegiance to you." He  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) stretched out his right hand and I withdrew mine. He said: "What has happened to you, O 'Amr?" I replied: "I intend to lay down a condition". He asked: "What condition do you intend to put forward?" I said: "I should be granted pardon". The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) then observed: "Are you not aware of the fact that Islam wipes out all the previous misdeeds? Verily migration wipes out all the previous misdeeds and verily the pilgrimage wipes out all the previous misdeeds."

As regards how to repay your debts we advise you to say the supplication that 'Ali  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him said to a man (who was facing financial difficulties): "Shall I not teach you some words that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) taught me if you have debts as big as the mountain of Subayr Allaah would help you pay your debts?  He said, say: "Allaahumma akfinee bihalaalika 'an haraamika waghninee bifadhlika 'amman siwaak" (O Allaah! Suffice me with what is lawful from that which is unlawful, and spare me by Your Grace of the need for others.) [At-Tirmithi]

Finally, you have to know that you are not obliged to sell the car which you bought with that loan. But if you could seek the help of some Muslims or borrow money from them to repay your debts to the bank while they should be patient until it would become easy for you to repay them, then this is better.

Lastly, we ask Allaah to help you to repay your debts. 

Allaah knows best.

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