We have been having discussions on Islamic Philanthropy models for a couple of editions now. If you missed it, don’t worry! you can catch up here.
This edition, we are rounding up discussions on Islamic Philanthropy Models with discussions on Hibah (Inter-vivos Gift).
WHAT IS A HIBAH?
Hibah can be translated simply as ‘gift’. Hibah is an important instrument in property planning according to Islamic law. It is a gratuitous grant of property (movable or immovable) that occurs during the life of the Donor (Owner of the property). In other words, if a Muslim wishes to give away something they own, or any amount of money, to someone else (a person or organization such as a charity) then they may do so by immediately transferring the legal title and possession of the gift itself to the recipient of the gift (known as the ‘donee’).
The principle of Hibah (gift) is a popular subject in Islamic law of administration relating to wealth management. Apart from the Wasiyah and the Waqf System, Hibah is another means by which Muslims can bequest their wealth to non-heirs for example, adopted children, etc.
Hibah is created when the person making the gift (the ‘donor’) executes a document known as a Hibah Declaration, declaring the gift to the donee.
RULES THAT APPLY TO HIBAH
There are certain rules that apply to the concept of Hibah in Islam. They are;
- For a Hibah to be valid, the donor has to have legal title to the subject of the gift and must also have legal capacity to give that property away to the donee. Just as the saying “You cannot give what you don’t own”, a donor lacking in legal capacity will constitute an invalid Hibah.
- A minor or person who lacks mental capacity cannot make a Hibah, and neither can someone who is under undue pressure, or is forced to do so.
- The offer of the gift to the donee must be clearly expressed in the Hibah, as well as an accurate description of the subject of the gift and the terms (if any) on which it is given. In addition, it should state that the gift is made without any consideration (the legal term for reward, payment, or expectation of payment) from the donee.
- The Hibah may be revoked at any point provided the subject of the gift has not been handed over to the donee.
- To revoke a Hibah, the donor must carry out one of the following tasks as a Kaffarah (type of religious penalty):
- Give food to 10 poor people of a type that the donor usually consumes;
- Give clothing to 10 poor people;
- Perform a 3-day fast.
BENEFITS OF HIBAH
- One of the most important benefits of Hibah is that it ensures that the distribution of a deceased estate is not ignored and lost because of the tedious process involved. By this, a Muslim would have during his/her lifetime apportioned his property to whomsoever he wishes to which in turn will reduce the number of unsolved cases in the distribution of a Muslim’s estate.
- Secondly, Hibah can be used to provide for non-heirs that would not be afforded the opportunity to inherit due to the Islamic law of succession. This grants a Muslim the freedom to be able to provide for extended family members and adopted children who will not be covered under the Islamic Law of Succession.
At Fiduciary Services Limited, Our services include the Legal consultation prior to the drafting of Hibah Declaration, the Drafting, Execution and Safekeeping of the Hibah Declaration.
Do you seek peace and tranquility for your family after your death? Do you worry about catering for your loved ones after your death? Are you worried that the rules of succession in Islam might prevent you from gifting those who are not your heir’s certain assets?
If so, then reach out to our Islamic Estate Advisors at to get started on your estate planning journey. We hold ourselves to a very high standard of professional practices in our Islamic estate distribution services such that we are able to ensure peace amongst the heirs and respect the deceased wishes while distributing the estate which guarantees the deceased rewards even after their death.