Can One Sell Their Kidney if They Need Money?

Rulings of Trade

Mufti Abu Muhammad Ali Asghar Attari Madani

Can one sell their kidney if they need money?

Question: What do the scholars of Islam say regarding the following: if a person in one’s household is critically in need of medical treatment, but money is not available to this end, can one sell their kidney to attain money for their treatment?

اَلْجَوَابُ بِعَوْنِ الْمَلِکِ الْوَھَّابِ اَللّٰھُمَّ ھِدَایَۃَ الْحَقِّ وَالصَّوَابِ

Answer: It is impermissible to sell one’s kidney to acquire money for treatment, even if a close family member does this.

The detail concerning this matter is as follows. Matters of buying and selling are conditional upon the item being sold being considered wealth, and human limbs are not. Furthermore, transactions involving human limbs demean the honour afforded to humankind, as Allah Almighty made mankind worthy of respect.

Consequently, even in the severest of circumstances, one is not allowed to sell any part of their body. One should pray for Allah Almighty to remove their financial difficulties and seek other permissible means of treating their relative.

Regarding the nobility conferred upon mankind, Allah Almighty declares:

وَ لَقَدْ کَرَّمْنَا بَنِیْۤ  اٰدَمَ وَ حَمَلْنٰہُمْ  فِی الْبَرِّ وَ الْبَحْرِ وَ رَزَقْنٰہُمْ مِّنَ الطَّیِّبٰتِ وَ فَضَّلْنٰہُمْ عَلٰی کَثِیْرٍ مِّمَّنْ خَلَقْنَا تَفْضِیْلًا (۷۰)

And We certainly honoured the progeny of Ādam, and We carried them on land and sea, and We granted them sustenance from pure things, and We endowed them with considerable excellence over many among creation.[1]

It is stated in Ināyah Shar al-Hidāyah:

و جزء الآدمى ليس بمال... وما ليس بمال لايجوز بيعه

Human body parts are not wealth…and whatever is not wealth cannot be bought or sold.[2]

It is mentioned in Fat al-Qadīr:

)ان الآدمى مكرم غير مبتذل، فلايجوز ان يكون شيئا من اجزائه مهانا و مبتذلا( وفى بيعه اهانة

(Humankind is honourable and cannot be degraded, which makes disrespecting or ridiculing any human body part impermissible.) Selling human body parts is an affront to them.[3]

It is written in Badāˈi al-anāˈiꜤ:

والآدمى بجميع اجزائه محترم مكرم، وليس من الكرامة والاحترام ابتذاله بالبيع والشراء

Humankind is honourable and noble, along with every body part. Demeaning these body parts by buying or selling them conflicts with their nobility.[4]

وَاللہُ اَعْلَمُ عَزَّوَجَلَّ وَ رَسُوْلُہٗ اَعْلَم صلَّی اللہ علیہ واٰلہٖ وسلَّم

Using a current account to acquire free services

Question: What do the scholars of Islam ordain regarding the following: an Islamic bank offers a current account. This gives free chequebook, transaction, ordering, and intra-banking services to all current account holders, whether they maintain the account or not. Is it permissible to open such a current account? Will these free services be considered interest?

اَلْجَوَابُ بِعَوْنِ الْمَلِکِ الْوَھَّابِ اَللّٰھُمَّ ھِدَایَۃَ الْحَقِّ وَالصَّوَابِ

Answer: If these facilities are afforded to all current account holders whether money is present in their accounts or not, said facilities are thus not conditionally related to a loan, and it is permissible to utilise them.

If these services are given with the condition that a certain amount of money must be in one’s current account, or a bank that deals with interest says one must have a savings account with x amount of money to acquire them, then according to Hadith, these services will become impermissible and haram to utilise.

Profit conditionally dependent upon a loan is haram. The Hadith mentions:

كل قرض جر منفعة فهو ربا

All profit attained by reason of a loan is interest.[5]

It is stated in al-Durr al-Mukhtār:

کل قرض جر نفعاً حرام

Every loan attracting profit is haram.[6]

ꜤAllāmah Ibn Ābidīn al-Shāmī رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَـلَيْه writes below this in Radd al-Mutār:

اذا کان مشروطاً

Conditional profit is haram.[7]

Imam Amad Razā Khan رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَـلَيْه was asked regarding profit attained from a loan, to which he said, “This is not permissible in any case.”[8]

Mufti Amjad Alī al-Aamī رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَـلَيْه said, “It is impermissible for the individual giving a loan to make this conditional upon any form of profit.”[9]

وَاللہُ اَعْلَمُ عَزَّوَجَلَّ وَ رَسُوْلُہٗ اَعْلَم صلَّی اللہ علیہ واٰلہٖ وسلَّم

How is it to take profit from a partnership when one does not know whether their partner adhered to principles of Islamic law?

Question: What do the scholars of Islam state regarding the following: after taking guidance according to Islamic law, I gave money to a person as a form of business partnership. He went into business with said money and earnt profit. We are now dissolving our partnership. Is it permissible for me to take profit earned from this partnership when I am unsure whether my business partner acted in accordance with Islamic law or not?

اَلْجَوَابُ بِعَوْنِ الْمَلِکِ الْوَھَّابِ اَللّٰھُمَّ ھِدَایَۃَ الْحَقِّ وَالصَّوَابِ

Answer: In this situation, if you struck an agreement with your business partner whilst fulfilling all required conditions of partnership, the profit earned from your partnership is halal. This will remain the case for as long as one does not come to know that their partner earnt this through impermissible means, because the apparent is that he earnt it in a halal manner.

It is written in al-Durr al-Mukhtār:

دفع مالہ مضاربۃ لرجل جاھل جاز اخذ ربحہ ما لم یعلم انہ اکتسب الحرام

If an ignorant man is given money as a form of partnership, the profit he earns from it is permissible to take provided one does not know he acquired it from haram means.

Regarding this, it is mentioned in Radd al-Mutār:

لان الظاھر انہ اکتسب من الحلال

… because the apparent is that he acquired it in a way which is halal.[10]

It is written in Bahār-e-Sharīat:

If an ignorant individual is given rupees as a form of partnership, and it is unknown whether they did business with it in permissible or impermissible fashion, it remains valid for one to take a share of profit provided they do not know it was acquired from haram means.[11]

وَاللہُ اَعْلَمُ عَزَّوَجَلَّ وَ رَسُوْلُہٗ اَعْلَم صلَّی اللہ علیہ واٰلہٖ وسلَّم

[1] [Kanz-ul-Irfan (translation of Quran)] (Part 15, Surah Bani-Israel, Verse 70)

[2] Iyah Shar al-Hidāyah, vol. 3, p. 585

[3] Fat al-Qadīr, vol. 6, p. 391

[4] Badāˈi al-anāˈi, vol. 6, p. 562

[5] Kanz al-Ummāl, vol. 6, p. 238, Hadith 15516

[6] Al-Durr al-Mukhtār, vol. 7, p. 413

[7] Radd al-Mutār, vol. 7, p. 413

[8] Fatāwā Riawiyyah, vol. 25, p. 217

[9] Bahār-e-Sharīat, vol. 2, p. 759

[10] Al-Durr al-Mukhtār, vol. 7, p. 518

[11] Bahār-e-Sharīat, vol. 2, p. 813




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