Zakat on Maid’s Wedding
I had a question with regard to giving zakat to maids on their wedding like purchasing washing machine or TV for maids from zakat money when they get married? Because the poor people today are also pressurized by in-laws for such things. Second, a distant relative of mine is living in a kanal house on rent on upper portion which has been giving to her on subsidized rate by the landlord. She teaches at a school and one of her sons also work in a company but they are still hardly able to meet their expenses. She is a divorcee. Both the sons are still studying as well. Will she be eligible for zakat?
Zakat is given to the needy people, ideally to the ones who are close to you. The one who is close to you can be close on the basis of being a relative, a neighbour, or a friend. In other words, you need to consider these two criteria to decide whether you should give Zakat or Sadqat to a person or not: his need and his closeness to you.
What constitutes need and what doesn’t is again your decision. Food, clothing, and shelter are definitely needs. So is medicine for cure. Indeed education too is a need. Contributing towards marriage expenses of a poor person is also a need in our society. Not everybody has the capacity against the trends of the society. At the end of the day, you will decide whether a person is needy or not and if there are more than one contestants, who is more needy than the other. It’s a balance between need and closeness that you should go for while deciding whether to spend on a certain individual or not. And the decision has to be yours.