Her husband wants to divorce her and she wants to cancel his debt from Zakah

I married a newly convert. In USA, an American native I did not accept any dowry as he had no means. I also wanted to show him a good example of a good Muslim wife.

My husband was in a difficult financial situation, I borrowed him 18,000 US $ he said he will pay me when he has the money as I will be handling the household. After 3 months of marriage he said he wanted a divorce. As he thought he married in a rush and not according to the American culture that there should be love first.

I was deeply hurt, as I started to have feelings for my husband.

With regards to the money he said he will pay in installments starting from June 2005.  He only paid me 300 US$, he now says he has cancer in lungs and prostate, I feel sorry for him and do not know how far his state of illness is , as I live in the Gulf. If that is so and he is sick and unable to work, can I consider the money Zakaat.

I still care for him but he has no wish to come back to me. Please advise.

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger. We ask Allaah to exalt his mention as well as that of his family and all his companions.


If a person who is obliged to pay Zakat renounces the debts that someone else owes him, this does not exempt him from paying the Zakat, as the intention [of paying Zakat] is required. In your case, the money is given as a loan and not as Zakat, and if you consider this money as Zakat this involves acquiring a benefit and getting back one's right and avoiding the loss of your money. So this cannot be considered as Zakat. Indeed it is urged in Islamic Law to extend the time of repayment for the debtor, or to renounce the entire loan or a part of it.

Allaah Says (which means): {And if someone is in hardship, then [let there be] postponement until [a time of] ease. But if you give [from your right as] charity, then it is better for you, if you only knew.}[Quran 2:280].

Nonetheless, you have not mentioned in your question whether or not your husband had really divorced you. However, if there is no divorce and it is not possible to perfectly maintain the marital relationship with him, then asking him to divorce you in this case may be better so that you will not remain undecided [neither divorced nor married].

Finally, it should be noted that one should not hasten to marry. Rather, one should first perform Istikhaarah prayer and then seek the advice of the pious and righteous people who know the person who proposes for marriage.

Allaah Knows best.

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