The Division of Property in Islam

Property division
(11) Allah thus commands you concerning you and your children: the share of the male is like that of two females. If (the heirs of the deceased are) more than two daughters, they shall have two-thirds of the inheritance, and if there is only one daughter, then she shall have half the inheritance. If the deceased has any offspring, each of his parents shall have a sixth of the inheritance; and if the deceased has no child and his parents alone inherit him, then one-third shall go to his mother. All these shares are to be given after payment of the bequest he might have made or any debts outstanding against him.
You do not know which of them, your parents or your children, are more beneficial to you. But these portions have been determined by Allah, for He indeed knows all, is cognizant of all beneficent considerations.
(12) And to you belongs half of whatever has been left behind by your wives if they die childless; but if they have any children then to you belongs a fourth of what they have left behind, after payment of the bequest they might have made or any debts outstanding against them.
And to them belongs a fourth of what you leave behind, if you die childless; and if you have any child then to them belongs one behind, after the payment of the bequest you might have made or any debts outstanding against you. And if the man or woman has no heir the direct
line, but has a brother or sister, then each of these shall inherit one-sixth; but if they are more than two, then they shall inherit one-third of the inheritance, after the payment of the bequest that might have been made or any debts outstanding against the deceased, providing that the bequest causes no injury. This is a commandment from Allah; Allah is All-Knowing, All- Forbearing.
(176) People ask you to pronounce a ruling concerning inheritance from those who have left hehind no lineal hers (kalalah). Say: ‘Allah pronounces for you the ruling: should a man die childless but have a sister, she shall have one half of what he has left behind; and should the sister die childless, his brother shall inherit her. And if the heirs are sisters, they shall have two-thirds of what he has left behind. And if the heirs are sisters and brothers, then the male shall have the share of two females. Allah makes (His commandments) clear to you lest you go astray Allah has full knowledge of everything.
(Surah An Nisa:7-12 & 176)

The above verses are from Surah An-Nisa which are dealt with the division of property. If we observe these verses we come to know that the division of property is dealt so adroitly that one wonders at the deftness and the justice. The rights of all relatives are preserved no one is abandoned or neglected. Regarding this matter we cannot find such laws elsewhere except in Islam. In other religions we may find the rules of worship or instructions about the parents or etiquettes but no religion can claim that this kind of rules and regulation (property rules) are there in their religion or books. Islam only is the religion which advocates the human rights and their execution. It gives laws and teaches the implementation also. This is because Allah the pure knows human weaknesses. Allah knows the best that man is mean particularly regarding money and property; he cannot judge properly, he may commit big blunders which may lead him and his relatives towards chaos after his death. So Allah the Exalted Himself gave clear instructions for the division of property so that we may live comfortable life here and in hereafter.
But regretfully how many of us know about this division which is there in Qur’an?
Most of the Muslims do not know. Even if they know they do not follow. Because of this injustice there is no love and compassion instead bitter animosity and enmity is being developed among families. Children do not want to take care of their parents, brothers and sisters don’t want to see each others’ faces and there is no respect between nephews and uncles. Almost all relationships are being severed due to this injustice. So let us try to understand what the division of property is!
‘Wirtha’ is an Arabic word its root is from ‘irth’. It means transferring someone’s something to other person unconditionally. It is called tarkah also which is from ta -ra -ka means to be left.
In Islam the study of Division of property is called ‘Ilmul Faraid’ (obligatory knowledge) or ‘Ilmul Meerath’.
1. Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) said, “Learn Ilmul Faraid and Qur’an and teach others as I am to leave”. (At Thirmidhi)
It means the level of learning Ilmul Faraid is equal to the
level of learning the Qur’an.
2. Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) said, “Actually the knowledge is of 3 types, (1) Aayat Muhkamat which are strong and still remaining (2) Sunnah Qaimah (Proven Ahadeeth or Prophet’s tradition) (3) Division of Property with justice.” ((Ibne Majah)
3. Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) said, “Learning obligations and teaching to others is half of the Knowledge, And this only is the first thing which will be taken out from my nation.” (Ibne Majah)
Learning Ilmul Meerath is Fard kifayah, it means if some people learn in the society it is enough for all and if no one learns all will be sinners. So we must know this division.
If a Muslim dies what is to be done?
1. Whatever the diseased has left the cost of shroud and the burial expenses should be taken out from it. If a person doesn’t have any property or money his relatives should bear his burial expenses.
2. If the diseased has any debt it should be paid from his wealth. (Debt is of two kinds, one is personal debt which is taken to fulfill the personal needs, and the other one is religious debt which is Mahar, Zakat, the kaffarah of fasting and Hajj etc.
3. After the fulfillment of debt the ‘will’ of the diseased will be fulfilled.
4. The rest of the property will be divided among the heirs justly.
5. The things to be remembered in division of property are:
(a) Property will not be divided in lifetime but after the death only, so is called Tarkah.
(b) The widow even if got married to another person will have her share of property. (If she is a divorcee of the diseased)
(c) Both men as well as women have their shares.
(d) The share of heirs is called zawil furood like parents, children, wife, brothers and sisters.
(e) After giving the share of zawil furood the remaining is to be distributed among the Usbah. (close men relatives of the diseased) While dividing the property among Usbah children will be given first preference like grandchildren, great grandchildren after that among grandfather, great grandfather, then uncles and their children.
(f) The heirs among whom the property is being distributed should be alive. There is no right for the dead relative and his children. (For example: (a) If the son dies before his father the son and his children will not be nominated for the property.
b) If a family meets an accident and both father and son die at once. If father dies before the son, the son will have his share in his father’s property, if the son dies before his father neither he nor his children will have share in his father’s property).
(g) Property should be divided whether it is more or less. All kind of property like mobile and immobile, ornaments, animals, clothes, provisions crockery etc everything should be divided among the heirs.
(h) Immediately after the burial of the deceased his property should be divided. If the deceased’s wife is pregnant and to deliver, the division should be delayed till her delivery.
(i) There is no right of the adopted child. ‘Will’ can be written for him or as a gift something can be given in the lifetime but he doesn’t have any right.
(j) A person can buy the share of another person with each other’s agreement.
(k) Close relative will have more share than a distant relative. In close relatives more responsible will have more share. For example a man has to shoulder many responsibilities so his share is double of a woman.
Blood Relationship:
This is of 3 kinds, (1) Usool (2) Furoo (3) Hawashi
(1) Usool – plural of Asl (means Root)
mother, father- Grand Father Grand Mother.
(2) Furoo- (Means branches) son, daughter, grandson granddaughter.
(3) Hawashi (Hashiyah) means Around. Brothers and his children.
(4) Nikah- As soon as a person marries a woman, she becomes his wife and will have her share if he dies whether the marriage is being consummated or not.
The people who have right are (1) Parents (2) Children
(3) Brothers and Sisters
(b) If a woman is given one divorce she has right of her husband’s property, and a woman is being divorced before the death of the husband that divorce is invalid and she will have her share.
Wala: The man who sets his slave free is called Wala.
If both the people do not have other relatives they have right upon each other’s property.
Allah says, ‘If other near of kin, orphans and needy are present at the time of division of inheritance give them something of it and speak to them kindly’.
It means while division of property if those who are not the heirs but orphans or poor are present give something to them also. If cannot, treat them softly. It is not obligatory to give but it is courtesy. Allah is encouraging us for charity.
“Allah thus commands you concerning your children: the share of the male is like that of two females”.
As Islamic law imposes greater financial obligations on men in respect of family life and relieves women of a number of such obligations, justice demands a woman’s share in inheritance should be less than that of a man.
The same applies in the case where there are two daughters. If the deceased leaves only daughters and if there are two or more daughters then they will receive two-thirds of the inheritance and the remaining one-third will go to the other heirs. But if the deceased has only one son there is a consensus among jurists that in the absence of other heirs he is entitled to all the property and if the deceased has other heirs, he is entitled to the property left after their shares have been distributed.
If the deceased leaves issue each of his parents will receive one-sixth of the inheritance irrespective of whether the issue consists either only of daughters, only of sons, of both sons and daughters, of just one son or just one daughter. The remaining two-thirds will be distributed among the rest of the heirs.
Those who will not get wartha are:
1) A-dis-believer: A believer and a non-believer have no right upon each other.
2) ِ Murderer: A person who killed anyone purposely, will not be included in the division of property as a unishment.
3) A slave: A slave is neither the heir of anyone nor anyone is his.
4) The one who curses: If father curses the son or the son curses father
They do not inherit each other.

Those<br / who have the right to inherit the half are:

Husband – daughter – daughter of son – sister – step sister


Each one of them will inherit the half in certain conditions:

First: Husband

He takes the half in one condition:

When his wife dies and leaves no children (either his own or from another man she was married to before) and no grand children.

Evidence: Surat An-Nisa Verse No. 12: “In that which your wives leave, your share is a half if they have no child.”

Second: Daughter

She takes the half in two conditions:

1. No brother with her.

2. She has to be one daughter alone

Evidence: Surat An Nisa Verse No 11 “If only one (daughter), her share is a half.

Note: She doesn’t take the half if she has a brother.

Third: Daughter of son

She takes the half in three conditions:

1. No Brother with her meaning no son of son.

2. She has to be one and alone.

3. The deceased must not have a daughter from his own or a son.

Evidence: is the same for the daughter, because the daughter of son is in the same rank and degree of the daughter when lost.

Fourth: Sister (Sibling)

She takes the half in three conditions:

1. She must not have a brother.

2. She has to be one and alone.

3. The deceased must not have any ascendants or descendants.

Evidence: Surat An-Nisa Verse No. 176. “They ask you for a legal verdict, say “Allah directs (thus) about Al-Kalalah (those

Who leave neither descendants nor ascendants as heirs) If it is a

Man that dies leaving sister, but no child, she shall have half the


Fifth: Step sister paternal

She takes the half in four conditions:

1. No brother with her (sibling)

2. She has to be one and alone.

3. The deceased must not have any ascendants or descendants.

4. She must have no sister (sibling).

Evidence: The same ayah from Surat An- Nisa Verse 176 for AL Kalalah.

Who inherits the sixth?

Seven heirs inherit the sixth and they are:

1- Father. 2- Grandfather. 3- Mother. 4- Daughter of son

5- Step sister (paternal) 6- Grandmother. 7- Step brother or

Sister (maternal)

In certain conditions:

First: Father

Father takes the sixth if the deceased has a child (son or daughter) or grandchildren (even lower).

Evidence: Verse No 11 “For parents, a sixth share of inheritance to each if the deceased left children….”

Second: Grandfather (paternal)

Grandfather takes the sixth if the deceased has a child or grandchild in a condition that the grandchild’s father is dead.

Evidence: Verse No11: “For parents, a sixth share of inheritance to each if the deceased left children…”

Third: Mother

Mother takes the sixth in two conditions:

1. The deceased has a child or grandchild.

Evidence: Verse No 11 “For parents, a sixth share of inheritance to each if the deceased left children…”

2. The deceased has a number of brothers or sisters (two and more) or combination of them either sibling or step/paternal/maternal.

Evidence: Verse No 11 “…..if the deceased left brothers or sisters, the mother has a sixth….”

Fourth: Daughter of son (one and more)

Takes the sixth if the deceased has one daughter, so this one daughter takes the half and the daughter(s) of son take the sixth.

Fifth: Step sister paternal (one or more)

Step sister (paternal one or more) takes the sixth if the deceased has one sister sibling. (She’s like the fourth case)

So if the deceased has one sister sibling and step sister(s)

Paternal, the sister sibling takes the half and the step sister(s)

Paternal take the sixth.

Sixth: Step Sister/Brother maternal

Step sister or brother (maternal) if alone then each take the sixth. Evidence: Verse No.12 “….if the man or women whose inheritance is in question has left neither ascendants nor descendants but has left a brother or a sister, each one of the two gets a sixth…”

The condition here is that there should be no ascendants nor descendants.

Seventh: Grandmother

Grandmother takes the sixth when the mother is dead. ( Either one grandmother or more, either paternal or maternal)

So the sixth will be divided among them equally.

Evidence: this is proven in Sunnah and the Sahabah (Prophet’s

Companion) gathered on it. The famous story of the grandmother who went to Abu Bakr Al Siddique asked about her share in the inheritance, and he told her that she has nothing as in Qur’an but he asked her to come back until he asks people which he did and Almogheera bin sho’ba said that he witnessed

Prophet Mohammad peace be upon him giving the grandmother the sixth, So Abu Bakr gave her sixth.

Who Inherits the Quarter?

Those who have the right to inherit the quarter are:

-Husband -Wife

1- The husband takes the quarter if the deceased wife has a child or grandchild (even if lower) either his own or from another man.

Evidence Verse No 12 “…but if they leave a child, you get a fourth of that which they leave…..”

2. The wife takes the quarter if the deceased husband has no child or grandchild (even if lower) either from her or from another women.

Evidence: Verse No 12 “…in that which you leave, their (your wives) share is a fourth if you have no child..”

The share of one wife or many wives does not change, the quarter is divided on them equally.

Who Inherits the eight?

Only one heir has the right in the eight: The Wife (wives).

When the deceased husband has a child (even if lower) either her own child or from another woman.

Evidence: Verse No 12 “….but if you leave a child, they get an


Who inherits the third?

Two of heirs only take the third:

1. Mother 2. Step brothers and sisters maternal (two and more)

First: The mother inherits the third in two conditions.

1- No child or grandchild to the deceased

2- No brothers or sister to the deceased (either siblings or step b/s (maternal or paternal)

Evidence: Verse No11: “….if no children, and the parents are the only heirs, the mother has a third…’’

Second: Step brothers and step sisters maternal (two and more)

They take the third in two conditions:

1. No ascendants and no decendants.

2. They should be two and more either males or females or a combination of them.

Evidence: Verse No 12 “….if the man or woman whose inheritance is in question has left neither ascendants nor descendants, but has left a brother or a sister, each one of the two gets a sixth; but if more than that, they share in a third…”

In this case it’s an equal share for males and females, no differentiations in gender, the third is distributed on them equally, and that’s different than siblings or step brothers and sisters paternal where the male takes a portion equal to that of two females.


It is the relation of a man to his father


1) Asabah bin’nafs:

Every male whose relation to the deceased does not include any females (male relation only) is considered asabah bin’nafs.

– Asabah bin’nafs is classified into four ranks;

i) Offspring side: includes the sons of the deceased and their sons, no matter how further up.

Holy Qur’an’ the panacea

Every country which got the freedom after slavery knows the value of independence and the meaning of sovereignty. So every year it celebrates the Independence Day with great pomp and show. In gratitude felicitates the martyrs and the people who struggled for it. In the same way it expresses its joy on Republic Day. It is a day on which the constitution is being formed for the welfare of the country. It means it is free to rule its people, there is no threat for the nation, and they need not to bow to the foreign rules and rulers.
Freedom and Law are deeply connected with human life.
Without freedom man has to jostle for the least survival and without Law there will be a great chaos. So both are like mind and soul to the body. Man is very emotional of these two and goes mad for them. He readily gives away his life for them though they are neither everlasting nor flawless. The law can harm him and the Liberty can be lost at anytime.
Man got an independence from his Lord Allah, the Lord of the Universe to release him from all sorts of slavery except one, that is; the slavery of the Creator alone. The Creator gave the man independence from the slavery of idol worship; the customs and traditions which force the man to bow his head in front of false idols and ideology and chain him to follow the things lead towards nothing but foolishness.
Allah the exalted gave the whole mankind a great everlasting constitution which has no faults or errors. It promises the man success of both here and hereafter if followed as it is.
It is a great bounty of Allah the Exalted.
Allah says, “The month of Ramadan in which was revealed the Qur’an, guidance for mankind, and clear proofs for the guidance and criterion (between right and wrong). So whoever of you sights (the crescent on the first night of) the month (of Ramadan i.e. is present at his home), he must observe sawm (fasts) that month, and whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number (of days which one did not observe sawm (fasts) must be made up) from other days. Allah intends for you ease, and He does not want to make things difficult for you. (He wants that you) must complete the same number (of days), and that you must magnify Allah (i,e, to say Takbir (Allahu Akbar; Allah is the Most Great) for having guided you so that you may be grateful to Him.”

Allah says that Ramadan is the month in which the holy Qur’an is revealed. The Qur’an is an assured constitution of liberty and peace for the mankind. So Allah wants us to be grateful to Him for this souvenir and wants us to fast in this month in gratitude.
If we ponder we will come to know why Allah made the difficulty of hunger, thirst and piety as obligatory for us.
The word Qur’an is a derivative of the Arabic verb ‘Qara’a meaning ‘to read. Qur’an means repeatedly recited book. According to its meaning it is the most recited and memorized book in the world.
It is a valuable and precious gift from the Creator to His Creatures. It’s a divine Law.
Allah says,
“و أنزلنا إليك الكتاب بالحق مصدقا لما بين يديه من الكتاب و مهيمنا عليه فأحكم بينهم بما أنزل الله ولا تتبع أهواءهم عما جاءك من الحق، لكل جعلنا منكم شرعة ومنهاجا”
“And We have sent down to you (O Muhammad SAWS) the Book (this Qur’an) in truth, confirming the Scripture that came before it and Muhaymin (trustworthy in highness and a witness) over it (old Scripture). So judge among them by what Allah has revealed, and follow not their vain desires, diverging away from the truth that has come to you. To each among you, We have prescribed a law and a clear way.”

In another place Allah says, “Surely, We have sent down to you (O Muhammad (SAWS) the Book (this Qur’an) in truth that you might judge between men by that which Allah has shown you (i.e. has taught you through Divine Revelation), so be not a pleader for the treacherous.’’

This Book contains advises of monotheism, the belief in messengers, lessons of purity, the lives of Prophets, the history of haughty and head strong rulers’ prosperity and downfall, the rules of government and It teaches the everlasting relationship between spouse, the rights of relatives , parents, way farers and other people in the society. The ways of protecting oneself from the satan’s cunning tricks.

Allah says, “So now has come unto you a clear proof (the Qur’an) from your Lord, and guidance and a mercy. Who then does more wrong than one who rejects the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of Allah and turns away there from?”

This book contains the warning for disobedient people and
orders the punishments for grave sinners.
Allah says, ‘‘And thus We have sent it down as a Qur’an in Arabic, and have explained therein in detail the warnings, in order that they may fear Allah, or that it may cause them to have a lesson from it (or to have the honour for believing and acting on its teachings) (20:113)

It gives the golden rules for the success of life after death. Whoever consults this book for the diseases of body and soul it’s a cure for all of them, it is a panacea. It moulds the manners, etiquettes and character and makes a person great. It is the Criteria for just and injustice.

Qur’an is the light of guidance for those who lost the way.
Allah says, ‘‘ (This is) a Book which We have revealed unto you (O Muhammad (SAWS) in order that you might lead mankind out of darkness into light by their Lord’s Leave to the path of the All-Mighty, the Owner of all Praise.” (14:1)

In Another place Allah says, “Wherewith Allah guides all those who seek His Good Pleasure to ways of peace, and He brings them out of darkness by His Will unto light and guides them to the Straight Way (Islamic Monotheism).’’

Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) said, ‘‘Doubtlessly Qur’an is the rope of Allah, It is a bright light, profitable medicine, whoever holds it fast it will protect him, and whoever follows it, gives him salvation.”
Qur’an is mercy for the people who are dejected and in despair due to their grievous sins and want to get relief. It opens the doors of repentance and forgiveness for them.
‘‘Say: O Ibadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allah: Verily, Allah forgives all sins. Truly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. Qur’an (39:53)
It gives Glad Tidings for those who believe in Allah and do good deeds.
‘‘Surely this Quran guides to the way that is straightest and gives good tidings to the believers who do deeds of righteousness, that theirs shall be a great wage.” (18:9)
It is a reminder for those Muslims who forgot the lessons of Quran and deviated from the righteous path and lost their way.

‘‘There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the Right Path has become distinct from the wrong path. Whoever disbelieves in Taghtut (anything worshipped other than Allah) and believes in Allah, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.”
(The Qur’an, Al-Baqara, 2: 256)
This Book is a remedy for all mental and physical ailments; It gives solution to all kinds of problems, It is a connecting rope in between Allah and people so Allah asked the people to hold it fast. Hence this is the greatest gift from Allah for which Allah ordered us to fast the whole month of Ramadan in gratitude.
How fortunate we are to get such a great Book. If Allah’s grace hadn’t been with us, we wouldn’t have got such a great constitution.
This constitution teaches us to Worship Allah alone. It teaches us to keep away from adultery, boozing, gambling, consumption of pork, eating wild animals, blood and dead animals. All these are dangerous for life.
If we worship other than Allah we will be caste into the hell fire. Adultery deforms the family, degenerate the morals and endangers the life.
Boozing makes a sound person drowsy, foolish and smoking spoils the lungs and take the people soon to the grave.
Gambling and playing cards makes a wealthy person pauper. Consumption of pork brings swine flu, wire worm and tapeworms and makes the person chronic patient.
Eating the flesh of wild animals, blood and dead animals will cause the carnivorous nature in human beings. So Allah abstained us and warned us to be away from all these satanic things which lead nothing but to the physical, mental and moral destruction.
The real felicitation for this divine constitution is to believe strongly that it is from Allah the Exalted, honour it and to read it. This Book is not revealed just for reading but it’s a Book to be practiced and guide the people through it.
If it were a common Book Allah would not have laden the difficulty of fasting upon human beings and the month of Ramadan would not have become so important.
If we put its rules and regulations into practice we will be successful in both the worlds.