Fiqh-us-Sunnah Volume 003, Zakaat and Fasting, Fiqh 3.044.

Section : On Combining Young and Old (Animals) or Separating Them.

1. Suwaid ibn Ghaflah said: "The zakah collector of the Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace, came to us and I heard him say: 'We do not collect zakah on suckling animals, nor do we separate between them [young and old], nor combine them together.' A man came with a great humped camel (kawma), but he did not accept it as zakah." It was reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and anNasa'i.

2. Anas reported that Abu Bakr wrote to him: "These are the sadaqah stipulations which the Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace, made obligatory to the Muslims. [And of it] do not combine. There is no need to gather [young and old] animals nor to separate them to obtain the correct sadaqah amount. What happens to a mixture of young and old? When zakah is assessed on two associates, then they have to figure it out equally among them." AlBukhari relates this.

Malik, in alMuwatta', says: "There are, for example, three partners, each having forty sheep on which zakah is payable. If they add their sheep together, their zakah will be only one sheep. Or, another example: two partners have 201 sheep. Their zakah will be three sheep. If they divide the flock among them, their zakah will be one sheep each."

Ash-Shaf'i holds that this statement is addressed to both the owner and the zakah collector. Each is ordered not to add or separate his possessions to obtain a lower or higher sadaqah. Since the owner would naturally prefer a low sadaqah on his property, he would combine or separate his possessions accordingly. The same would also be true of the zakah collector, who might like to collect as much sadaqah as possible. By using the phrase khashyat assadaqah (for fear of sadagah), the Prophet meant that it may become more or less since both altematives were possible. This shows that he did not prefer one choice over the other. Therefore, he made both alternatives possible. According to the Hanafiyyah: "This is, in a sense, a prohibition on the zakah collector's separating the property of a person so that his sadaqah is not increased. For example: a man possesses 120 sheep. If they are divided into three lots of forty each, the zakah would amount to three sheep. Another example: if they combine the property of one man with the property of another, the sadaqah would increase. Thus, if a person owns 101 sheep and another owns an equal number, then the zakah collector, if he combines the two lots, would secure three sheep as payment toward zakah, while the actual amount due is only two sheep."

Related Hadith(s)