The Method of Calculating Khums
Q 971: What is the ruling regarding postponement of paying khums from one year to the next?
A: To delay the payment of khums to the next year is impermissible, although paying it at any time will free one’s debt. One does not have any right to use that money once the next year has started unless its khums is paid. However, if he uses the money prior to the payment of khums, he is liable to its khums and if he purchases things like commodities, land, etc., with this very money from which khums is not paid, the transaction is fuḍūlī with respect to the amount of khums and its validity depends on the permission of the authority in charge of khums, after which the person should pay khums on these items based on their current value.
Q 972: I have some money, a part of which I have given to others as loans. At the same time, I owe to some people for the land I purchased to build a house on it for which I have a postdated check to be paid in a few months. Am I permitted to subtract the amount I owe for the land from the cash and loan and pay the khums on the balance? Furthermore, is khums applicable to the land which has been purchased for residential purposes?
A: It is not obligatory for you to pay the khums on the part of the previous year’s income you lent to others until you receive it if you could not get it back by the end of the khums year. Also from the money gained as annual earnings, you can pay your debt which will be due several months later — before the khums year ends. But if you do not do so and the khums year ends, you cannot exclude your debt from khums, rather, you should pay khums on the whole amount. Anyhow, if you make a decision to pay all or some of your money to settle your debt within the near future, and if you pay its khums the remaining money will not be enough to pay the debt and will make you suffer from a trouble and difficulty, it is not obligatory, then, to pay khums on the money by which you want to pay your debt. The land bought with annual income during the earning year for living purposes is not subject to khums.
Q 973: I am not yet married. Is it permitted for me to save money from my present income for my future needs?
A: If the annual income is saved to be spent for necessary marriage expenses within the near future after year’s end — while if its khums is paid, the entire marriage expenses could not be provided — it is not subject to khums.
Q 974: Each year, end of the 10th month is the end of my khums year. Does the 10th month’s salary which I get at the end of it count in the khums of that year? Upon receiving my salary, I often give the remaining amount to my wife as a gift — which is usually saved every month — is this amount subject to khums?
A: Khums applies to any amount that remains as surplus over the annual expenses from the salary received during the year even if it happens to be on the last day of the khums year. What you give as a gift to your wife or any other person is not subject to khums unless it is formal, beyond your station in the common view, or intended to evade the payment of khums.
Q 975: I spent some items and money on which khums had been paid. Is it permissible to exclude an amount of the annual earnings at the year’s end equal to the spent amount?
A: Of the present year’s earnings, nothing is exempt from khums to account for the money used, on which khums had been paid.
Q 976: Some property that is not liable to khums, such as prize, is mixed with capital. At the end of the khums year is one permitted to exclude the equal amount from the actual capital and pay khums on the balance?
A: There is no problem in excluding that amount.
Q 977: Three years ago, I opened a shop with khums-paid money. My khums year ends with the end of the solar year. Until now, whenever the year ends, I see that my entire capital is in the form of loan which is lent out to people while I owe a large amount. I would be grateful if you could tell me what my duty is?
A: There is no khums on you if at end of the year your actual capital and profit are not at your disposal and nothing is added to your capital. As to what you sold to people on credit, it will be counted as the income of the year of receipt.
Q 978: At the end of the khums year, it is extremely difficult for us to determine the value of items in our shop. What should we do?
A: To calculate annual income whose khums you should pay, it is obligatory to establish a value for the items in your shop in any way possible even through estimation.
Q 979: What is the rule if I do not calculate my annual income for several years so that my cash and capital increase with intention to pay khums on all of my property with the exception of the original capital later on?
A: At the end of the khums year, if there is any khums on your assets — no matter how little the amount — then you have no right to use them. Before paying their khums, if the khums-liable assets themselves are involved in a transaction, then in proportion to the khums share, the transaction is fuḍūlī and its validity depends on the permission of the authority in charge of khums.
Q 980: I hope you will explain the easiest way a shopkeeper may calculate and pay his annual khums?
A: At the end of the khums year the owner should calculate the value of the stock plus the cash money he has. Then compare this with the original capital investment. If the calculated figure amounts to a value greater than the original capital investment, then the extra amount would be considered as the year’s profit on which khums should be paid.
Q 981: Last year I have determined the first of the third month as the beginning of my khums year. On that day I also consulted at the bank to calculate the khums on the interest I gained on my bank account. Is it a right method to calculate khums of the year?
A: Your khums year starts when you acquire some benefit or become able to receive it for the first time. It is not permissible for you to delay your year’s beginning beyond that time.
Q 982: If certain items essential for living like car, motorcycle, carpet, etc, on which khums is not paid, are sold, should their khums be paid immediately after sale?
A: If the mentioned items were necessary for your life and you paid for them from the income of the year of earning, their sale money is not subject to khums. But if they were bought with the money on which the khums year had passed without paying its khums, you should pay khums on their purchase price before their selling. However, if the person has no yearly account for his assets, he makes muṣālaḥah with one of our authorized representatives regarding the purchase price.
Q 983: A person wants to have a home appliance, like a refrigerator but he cannot buy it all at once. The only way is to save an amount of money monthly and buy it when savings reach the appropriate amount. Now his khums year ended. Is the money put aside for the mentioned purpose liable to khums?
A: If they saved money to buy the necessities of life in the near future after the end of khums year, — for example, within two-three months in case they cannot buy them sooner — it is not subject to khums provided that paying khums prevents him from purchasing the necessities of life.
Q 984: If someone lends a part of his income before the end of the khums year and retrieves it after a few months into the next one, how is khums to be calculated?
A: It is obligatory to pay khums on the money whenever it is paid back to you.
Q 985: What is the ruling regarding those things one buys during his khums year and sells after the khums year ends?
A: If the mentioned items were considered part of one’s necessities of life and he bought them for his personal use, they are not subject to khums. But if he bought them for sale and it was possible to sell them before the end of the khums year, paying khums on the gained profit is obligatory. Otherwise as long as they are not sold, no khums applies to them and whenever they are sold, the profit gained from their sale is considered part of the income of the year of sale.
Q 986: Is khums obligatory for that income an employee receives in the new khums year but relates to the previous year?
A: If one was able to acquire it before the end of his previous khums year, khums is obligatory for that amount even if he did not receive it then. Otherwise, it is considered part of the income of the year of receipt.
Q 987: How does one account for the khums of gold coins which constantly fluctuate in value?
A: If one wants to pay khums on their value, the standard is the value of the day of payment.
Q 988: A person calculates his khums year account in gold value, e.g., if his entire capital equals the value of 100 gold coins (of certain type), he will pay an equivalent of 20 coins as khums to have 80 coins left as khums-paid capital. Then if in the next year gold coin’s value increases, but his capital is still equivalent to 80 coins, is it subject to khums? Is it obligatory for him to pay khums on the increment in value?
A: The criterion in the exclusion of a khums-paid capital is the original capital itself. Therefore if one’s capital which he works with consists of gold coins of certain type, he could exempt those coins on which khums was paid at the end of the khums year no matter whether their market value — compared with the value of the last year — has increased or not. But if his capital consists of cash and stocks which he calculated in terms of gold value at the end of the khums year to pay their khums, then at the end of the next khums year he should exempt only the value, not the number, of those gold coins that he counted the last year. Accordingly, if the value of the coins increases in the next year, one could not exclude the amount of increment, rather, it is considered as a profit on which paying khums is obligatory.
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