Making Up For Missed Fasts and Paying Fidyah
Every able Muslim is expected to fast throughout Ramadan but if a person is unable to fast due to travelling, poor health or menstruation, it is compulsory to make up the missed fasts or pay fidyah (expiatory payment) or do both or neither of the two before the next Ramadan. Fidyah is payable by those who are unable to fast for valid reasons such as poor health.
It was said in the Holy Quran: The fast is for a fixed number of days. If any of you be so ill that he cannot fast or is on a journey, then he must fast the same number of days on other days. But for those who are no longer able to fast, there is redemption granted by feeding a person in destitution or each day missed or by giving him the same amount of money. Better yet is for he who volunteers greater good by either giving more or fasting in case of recovery, and that you should fast when you are able to, is better for you, if you but knew the worth of fasting (Baqara 2: 184).
RULING OF PAYING FIDYAH AND REPAYING FAST
According to the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore, the ruling on repaying missed fast in Ramadan is divided into 3 categories.
- Those who are suffering from illness that may worsen or if by fasting, the healing process will be delayed
- Those who traveled more than 84km (musafir)
- Pregnant women or those who are breastfeeding and are worried of their own well-being
- Those in a state of nifas or haid (menstruation)
- If a person is too hungry or thirsty to the extent that it might harm them
- Those whose fast was invalidated by one of the conditions that invalidate fast.
Compulsory Fidyah Payment But No Need To Repay Fast
- This is for people who are in a state of critical illness, unable to fast and whose hopes of healing are very slim
- If a person is too weak and unable to fast due to old age
Compulsory Fast Repayment and Fidyah
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women who are worried of the child’s well-being
- Those who have not repaid their fast from the previous Ramadan until the next Ramadan arrives
The Fidyah amount varies between locations depending on the local staple food produced. For example, in the UK, the Fidyah amount is approximately £5 per person, per day of missed fasting. This is equivalent to one ‘mudd’ or the weight of a local food product that can be held between two cupped hands.
Why Must Fidyah Be Paid?
Your fidyah is not only to make up your debt with Allah (SWT) for missed fasts but it is to also provide for your brothers and sisters who are unable to provide for themselves.