Making up Missed Fasts
Q 804: Due to a journey made for an important religious mission, I became liable for the qaḍā’ of eighteen days of Ramadan. What is my duty? Is it obligatory for me to perform qaḍā’ of the missed fasting?
A: You must perform qaḍā’ of the Ramadan fasts missed due to traveling.
Q 805: A person was hired to perform qaḍā’ fasts of the month of Ramadan for somebody else, and he breaks the fast in the afternoon. Does he have to pay the kaffārah?
A: No kaffārah is required.
Q 806: Some people could not fast due to their journey for religious missions during the month of Ramadan and now want to make up for it after years of delay; do they have to pay any kaffārah?
A: If delaying the qaḍā’ of Ramadan fasts until the next Ramadan was due to a continuing legitimate excuse, then they should perform only the qaḍā’ of the missed fasts and no fidyah, i.e. one mudd of food for each day, is required, although caution lies in giving fidyah as well. But, if the delay was out of negligence and without any excuse, then they are liable to their qaḍā’ as well as fidyah.
Q 807: A person did not perform prayers or fast for about 10 years due to ignorance. Now he has repented, turning to Allah, the Exalted, and has decided to compensate for his past. But he cannot perform the qaḍā’ of all the days he did not fast, nor has he the means to pay for the kaffārah. Is it enough for him to ask for forgiveness alone?
A: He is not relieved from the duty of performing the qaḍā’ of the missed fasts by any means. As to the kaffārah for each day that he did not fast, if he is not able to fast for 60 days or to feed 60 needy persons, he must give food to the poor as much as he can and also, according to caution, ask Allah for forgiveness. If he cannot do that at all, it suffices to ask Allah for forgiveness.
Q 808: Due to a lack of financial and physical power, I failed to perform obligatory kaffārah, i.e. to fast or to feed the poor. As a result, I asked Allah for forgiveness. Due to Allah’s grace, now I am able to fast and feed the poor. What should I do?
A: In the given case, it is not necessary to perform kaffārah, although it is a mustaḥabb caution.
Q 809: What is the duty of a person who did not know that performing qaḍā’ of missed fasts is required before the next Ramadan, and so did not do it?
A: Ignorance of the obligation to perform qaḍā’ before next Ramadan does not relieve one of the fidyah for delay.
Q 810: A person did not fast for 120 days. What must he do? Does he have to fast for 60 days for every missed fast, and does he have to pay kaffārah?
A: He has to perform qaḍā’ for the Ramadan fasts he missed. If he broke the fast intentionally and not for some shar‘ī reason, then he has, in addition to performing their qaḍā’ , to pay the kaffārah, which is fasting for sixty days or feeding 60 needy persons, or giving one mudd (750 grams) of food to each of the sixty.
Q 811: I fasted for almost one month with the intention of carrying out the qaḍā’ of any fast that I might have missed, or to be counted as a means of nearness to God. Does this month of fasting count as qaḍā’ for the missed fasts?
A: If you fasted with the intention of carrying out whatever counts as your present duty, an obligatory or recommended fast, it would be counted as the qaḍā’ of the fasts missed if you were liable to any.
Q 812: If a person, not knowing the number of fasts missed, performs fasts with the intention of performing a recommended fast believing that he is not liable to any qaḍā’ , does this fasting count as qaḍā’ for missed fasts while he is liable to qaḍā’ of some fasts?
A: The fasts kept with the intention of recommended fasting do not count as qaḍā’ for fasts one is liable to perform.
Q 813: Due to ignorance of the rules, a person does something that invalidates his fast, should he only perform qaḍā’ of the fasting or should he pay the kaffārah as well?
A: If someone does something that invalidates his fast due to lack of knowledge about the shar‘ī rule, e.g., he does not know that taking medicine like taking food invalidates fasting and takes medicine in Ramadan month during the day, his fasting is void. He should perform its qaḍā’ but paying kaffārah is not required.
Q 814: A person, at the outset of the age of shar‘ī puberty, is not able to fast due to physical weakness and inability. Is it enough for him to perform the qaḍā’ of the fast, or is he required to offer the kaffārah as well?
A: If fasting does not cause unbearable hardship for him yet he breaks the fast intentionally, then he has to perform qaḍā’ and pay kaffārah as well.
Q 815: A person does not know the exact number of days he has failed to fast or how many days of prayers he missed. What should he do? And what rule applies if he does not know whether he missed the fast intentionally or due to a shar‘ī excuse?
A: It is permissible for him to perform only the qaḍā’ of the prayers and fasts he is sure he missed. When there is doubt as to whether the fast was broken intentionally or not, kaffārah is not required.
Q 816: Fasting in Ramadan, a person did not wake up one day to eat the meal taken before the dawn. Therefore, he could not continue fasting until sunset. During the day, something happened which forced him to break his fast. Does he have to give the single or the twofold kaffārah?
A: If he keeps the fast and breaks it only when it becomes — due to hunger and thirst — unbearably hard for him to continue, he has only to perform qaḍā’ of the fast and no kaffārah is required.
Q 817: If one is not sure whether they have done the qaḍā’ of all missed fasts, what is their duty?
A: If they are sure they were obliged to perform qaḍā’ of some fasts in the past, then it is obligatory to ascertain that they have fulfilled their duty.
Q 818: A person did not fast on reaching shar‘ī puberty. He fasted for eleven days then broke the fast one day at noon and did not fast for the remaining eighteen days. Also, he did not know that kaffārah was obligatory for the days not fasted. What is the ruling concerning him?
A: If he intentionally and without a shar‘ī excuse broke his fast in the month of Ramadan, he has to perform qaḍā’ and pay kaffārah as well, regardless of whether he knew he had to give a kaffārah or not.
Q 819: A physician told a patient that fasting is harmful for his health. However, after a few years, he realized that fasting was not harmful for him and the physician was wrong in excusing him from fasting. Does he have to pay kaffārah in addition to performing qaḍā’?
A: If he had refrained from fasting due to fear for his health based on an experienced and reliable physician’s diagnosis or some other reasonable basis, he has only to perform the qaḍā’ of the missed fasting.
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