Zakat Fitrah is also known as Zakat on the Person, Zakat of Ramadan or Zakat Fitri. Zakat Fitrah was obliged in the second year of Hijrah, the same year that fasting in Ramadan was made obligatory. Zakat Fitrah is prescribed as a means of purification for the person who fasts, redressing wrong deeds and undesirable words uttered during fasting. Zakat is also a relief-aid to the needy.
Conditions for Zakat
Possess something (food, goods or cash) in excess of his own needs and all his dependants for the day and night of Eidul Fitri.
To observe both periods of end of Ramadan and beginning of Syawal. A person who dies before sunset and a child born after sunset on the night before first of Syawal, are exempted from paying Zakat Fitrah.
Zakat Fitrah is an obligation on the person and his dependants such as his wife, children who have not reached maturity and parents. If he is unable to pay Zakat Fitrah for himself and/or his dependants due to certain difficulties, his dependants may pay Zakat Fitrah for themselves and/or for him with his permission. What is important is that Zakat Fitrah payment has been made for every individual.
Zakat Fitrah vs Zakat on Wealth
Zakat on Wealth
Aim on every person
Aim on wealth
Paid within stipulated time
No stipulated time
Amount is low and all Muslims are required to pay the same amount
Dependent on the amount of wealth the giver has
Zakat Fitrah Rates
The Zakat Fitrah rate that is obligatory on every person is one sa’ or 2.3kg of the staple food of the territory in which the person is in. In Singapore, the staple food is rice.
Since 2005, Muis has introduced a two-tier ZakatFitrah rate. This is in accordance with the Syari’ah and allows the payer to choose the rate that is most suitable for them based on their daily consumption.
Normal Rate ($5.10 per person in 1438H / 2017): Based on the median price of 2.3kg of rice (normal/average grade) that is consumed as a staple.
Higher Rate ($7.00 per person in 1438H / 2017): Based on the median price of 2.3kg of rice (higher grade) that is consumed as a staple.
The objective of the two-tier system is to provide the ability for everyone to be able to fulfil their Zakat Fitrah obligation and for those who can afford to pay more to do so to further help those in need.
When to Pay Zakat Fitrah
Zakat Fitrah payment can be made throughout the month of Ramadan but must be before the start of Eidul Fitri prayers. If it is paid after Eidul Fitri prayers it becomes just an ordinary charity.
Where to Pay Zakat Fitrah
Zakat Fitrah is to be paid in the region where the person meets the arrival of Maghrib ending Ramadan. If during that duration he is in a journey and there is no one suitable to receive Zakat Fitrah, the person then needs to pay his Zakat Fitrah at his place of destination upon arrival.
How to Pay Zakat Fitrah in Ramadan
There are various methods for Muslims in Singapore to pay their Zakat Fitrah during the month of Ramadan: