Khums and Ma’ūnah
Q 896: Someone has a personal library whose books he used for a while. For several years he has not used them, but it is likely that he may use them in the future. Does khums apply to the library in the period that he does not use the books? Is there a difference in respect of liability to khums whether the original purchaser of the books was he himself or his father?
A: If at the time of purchase he was in need of them for reading and reference, and their quantity was suitable for a person like him in the common view, then khums does not apply to the books even if he does not use them after the first year. Also they are not liable for khums if they were inherited or received as gift from parents or others.
Q 897: Is the gold a husband buys for his wife liable for khums?
A: If it is in a quantity normal for his social status in the common view it is counted as part of his annual expenses which are not subject to khums.
Q 898: Is khums applicable to the down payment made for purchasing books at the International Book Fair while the books have not been delivered yet?
A: If the books are needed by him and their quantity is normal for his social station as per common view, it is not liable for khums.
Q 899: A person owns a second piece of land, which he needs and is normal for his social status. However, he would not be able to build a house on it during his khums year or to complete the construction in one year. Is it subject to khums?
A: In respect to the piece of land which one needs to build a house on for living in, there is no difference between being one or several pieces of land or to building one house or several houses to be expected from khums. The criterion is the strict meaning of being in need for it/them in accordance with his social status as per common view and his financial ability for gradual construction.
Q 900: One has a complete set of dishes. For the whole set to be exempted from khums, is it sufficient to use some of them?
A: The criterion for exemption from khums for home appliances is the need for them in accordance with what is normal for one’s social status in the common view even if they are not used for the entire year.
Q 901: A set of dishes or carpet is not used for the entire year but it is needed for guests, is it liable for khums?
A: It is not liable for khums as per the given question.
Q 902: Considering Imam Khomeini’s (q.) verdict concerning bride’s trousseau which she takes to her husband’s house at the time of wedding, what is the rule if it is customary in a certain region that the groom’s family is responsible for providing the household furnishings and other necessities, which are procured gradually and over the course of some years?
A: If the procurement of furniture and future necessities is normally considered a part of their expenditure in the common view, it is not liable for khums.
Q 903: Does the use of one volume of a book set, such as an encyclopedia, exempt the entire set from khums, or is one required, for instance, to read at least one page of each volume?
A: If the whole set is needed, or if obtaining one volume requires buying the entire set, then it is not liable to khums; otherwise khums is obligatory for volumes that are not presently needed, and the mere reading of one page of each volume does not exempt them from khums.
Q 904: The medical insurance company has reimbursed the cost of medicines bought in the middle of the year from annual earnings, and if the medicines remain until the end of the khums year without becoming unusable, are they liable to khums?
A: If they were purchased to be used when needed and there is a good chance of using them, they are not liable to khums.
Q 905: A person does not own a house and saves money in order to pool sufficient funds for purchasing a house and the necessities of life, is it liable to khums?
A: The money which is saved from annual earnings is liable to khums at the year’s end if it is intended for future living expenses unless it is saved for necessary living expenses in which case if it is to be spent shortly after the end of khums year, say two or three months, for the said purpose, it is not subject to khums provided that paying khums prevents him from purchasing the necessities of life.
Q 906: My wife weaves carpets and the capital involved in carpet weaving belongs to us. We obtained it through a loan, and only a part of the carpet has been woven till now while my khums year has already ended. Would khums be applicable to the portion that has been woven when the carpet is completed and sold if I intend to use its sale proceeds for household necessities? What is the rule regarding the capital?
A: After excluding the capital acquired on loan from the sale price of carpet, the rest would be considered part of the earnings of the year it is sold. Therefore, if it is spent for living expenses in the year the carpet is completed and sold, it will not be liable to khums.
Q 907: My sole possession is a three-story house and each floor consists of two rooms. I reside on one floor and the other two are occupied by my children. Is this building liable to khums during my lifetime? Would it be liable to khums after my death, so that I may direct the heirs in my will to pay it after my death?
A: In the case mentioned, you are not liable to khums on the building. Of course, the person who has not yearly khums accounting, he should do muṣālaḥah in some way.
Q 908: What is the procedure for calculating the khums on household items?
A: The items that endure despite use, like carpets etc., are not liable to khums. But the surplus of daily consumable goods, such as rice, oil, etc., that remains at the year’s end is liable to khums.
Q 909: Someone does not have his own house to live in. He bought a piece of land with the intention of building a house for himself but did not have sufficient funds to build it. A year has passed and it has not been sold. Is it liable to khums? If it is, should he pay khums on its purchase cost or on its present value?
A: If he bought it from the annual earnings of the year in which he bought it to build his needed house, he is not liable to pay its khums.
Q 910: In the preceding question, if he starts the construction but it is not completed until the end of his khums year, is the money spent on the building materials liable to khums?
A: In the given case, it is not liable to khums.
Q 911: Someone adds an additional floor to his house for the future accommodation of his children. He occupies the first floor and he would not need the second floor until some years later. Is he liable to khums on the amount spent in constructing the second floor?
A: If building the second floor for the future accommodation of one’s children is considered part of one’s annual expenses in accordance with his social status in the common view, the money spent is not liable to khums. Otherwise, paying its khums is obligatory if neither he nor his children are in need of it currently.
Q 912: You have stated that khums is not obligatory for anything which forms part of one’s expenditures. On this basis, if a person does not own a house for living but it is several years that he bought a piece of land and he does not have adequate funds for its construction, why is it not considered part of his annual expenditure? Would you please explain it.
A: If the land was bought from one’s earnings within the khums year to build the needed house on it, it is indeed considered part of the annual expenditure and does not require khums. Also, if it is bought from yearly earnings for sale to use its proceeds to get a house, it is liable to no khums.
Q 913: The beginning of my khums year coincides with the beginning of the sixth month of the solar year, and the university and school exams are usually held in the second or third month of the year. We receive an overtime payment for conducting the tests six months later. Is the compensation for work performed prior to the start of the khums year and received after the end of the khums year liable to khums? Please explain.
A: It is considered as part of the earnings of the year of receipt, not of the year of work and if it is spent for living expenses of the year of receipt, it is not liable to khums.
Q 914: At times we purchase home appliances, such as a refrigerator, at a lower price than its market value. These appliances will not be necessary for us but in the future, i.e. after marriage. Considering that these things will cost us many times their current cost if bought later, after marriage, and they are now kept unused in the house, are they liable to khums?
A: If you have purchased them for the future use with the money from annual earnings, and they are not needed in the year of purchase, they would be liable to khums at their fair market value at the year’s end. But if it is a normal practice to purchase them gradually and store them until needed, due to the inability to acquire them all at once when needed, and it is to an extent that is normal for your social status in the common view, then it is considered part of the annual expenditures and is not liable to khums.
Q 915: Is the money donated to charitable causes, like helping schools, flood victims, and the people of Palestine and Bosnia, considered part of annual expenditures so that they are not liable to khums?
A: These charitable donations are considered part of annual expenditures for the year of contribution and do not require khums.
Q 916: Last year, we saved some money to buy a carpet. Near the last year’s end, we visited shops. One of the stores promised to procure a suitable carpet to meet our requirement and taste. This continued until the second month of this year. As my khums year begins with the solar Hijrī year, would this amount be subject to khums?
A: According to the given question the saved money and the said carpet are not subject to khums.
Q 917: Several people have collectively established a private school. After they invested the little money they had, the founding committee decided to take a bank loan to cover other expenses. The founding committee further decided that each partner should pay a certain amount every month to complete the investment capital and to pay off the bank installments. Considering that the institution has not yet entered its profit bearing stage, is the amount paid by each of the partners liable to khums? Does khums apply to the entire capital (the value of the institution)?
A: Khums is obligatory for each member with respect to his monthly payments towards contribution to the capital of the company, as well as on the initial share in the school’s foundation. Once each member has paid khums on his share of the capital of the company, the total capital is not liable to khums.
Q 918: For some years my employer has been indebted to me. Would this amount be liable to khums on its recovery, or at the year’s end after receipt?
A: If the money is your salary and is not receivable at the end of the khums year, it is considered part of the gains of the year of receipt. And if the amount is spent on the annual expenses in the year of receipt, it is not liable to khums.
Q 919: Is the criterion for exemption of something from khums its usage during the year or its being needed during the year, even if it remains unused?
A: For items like clothing, carpets, etc. that are not consumed when used, the criterion is the need for them. But for consumable items of daily necessities, such as rice, oil, etc., the criterion is their consumption, and any surplus of these over the year’s consumption is liable to khums.
Q 920: A person buys a car for his family’s comfort and pays for it by money whose khums is not paid and by the earnings made during the year. Is he liable to pay khums on that money? And if he purchases the car to use for work-related purposes, or both, what would be the rule?
A: If the car was intended for purposes related to his work and business, then it is ruled as tools of business in respect of liability to khums. But if it is meant for his daily living needs, and the common view considers it as a normal need for such a person as per his social status, it is not liable to khums. Of course, if the money with which the car is bought was subject to khums, its khums should be paid.
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