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Assalaam Alekum Respected Mufti Saheb, I've a question in regard to the distribution of my mother's wealth. She passed away leaving behind 9 surviving children--4 males and 5 females. My father had passed away before her. Kindly let us know how to distribute her 350,000 currency among 9 of us. b) Does Shariah permit owner of the wealth to write a will while alive? I was given to understand that one can but only to the extent of 1/5% of the total. Pls enlighten on this issue. I know a wealthy brother who has written a will in which he has indicate how much his own children will get and how much his grandchildren will get. Is it permissible to distribute in the ratio he wants or must follow Shariah's guidelines for distribution. This brother has 2 sons, a daughter and 9 grand children. Ever grateful for enlightening us with Shariah rules. Thank you and may Allah bless you with long life, health and happiness Ameen!

الجواب حامداومصليا

May Allah have mercy on your mother's soul and may He admit her into Jannatul-Firdaus. Aameen

1- Writing a will is not only permissible but it is also recommended as it is learned from the statements of our beloved Prophet Sallallahu Alaihe Wa Sallam. While writing a will about the distribution of estate one must state that the distibution must take place in accordance with the Shariah.

2- If someone wants to assign some his wealth for charitable purpose or as a gift to anyone other than the close relative then it must not exceed 1/3 of the total estate.

If your mother was survived by only 9 children and no other close relative is there then the entire estate should be divided among the children in a way that the brothers get double of sister's share. For example, if the total wealth is divided in 13 shares then 5 shares would go to the daughters and 8 shares would go to the sons.

And Allah knows best.

Mufti Ikram ul Haq

Fatwa Center of America

23 Sha'ban 1432/ July 25 2011