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 Keeping Money in Riba-Based Bank

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PostSubject: Keeping Money in Riba-Based Bank   Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:03 pm

Where should he deposit his money in these times when riba is so widespread?

Where should I deposit my money in an age when people have become so negligent and the banks are dubious because of riba, and we have no Islamic banks and keeping the money at home is not safe? I want to deposit my money in a place that is permissible, without committing any sin. And I want to invest it and pay zakaah on it, otherwise it will get used up and the amount of zakaah will be reduced.

Praise be to Allaah.

Depositing one’s money in a riba-based bank helps the bank to deal in riba; this applies even if you do not get any interest on your deposit.

If you do get interest, this is the riba that is forbidden by Allaah and His Messenger. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) cursed the one who consumes riba and the one who gives it.

Whoever has wealth that he wants to save or invest should look for a permissible way of doing so. He may give the money to a trustworthy man to do business with it for him, and they can share the profit in whatever manner they agree upon.

If he cannot find any way to save it other than depositing it in the bank, then there is no sin in that if it is done out of necessity, so long as that does not involve any interest.

He should choose the least evil of the banks, and the one that is closest to the way of dealing that is prescribed in sharee’ah.

Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him)
With regard to depositing money in bank accounts that pay interest monthly or annually, this is a kind of riba that is forbidden according to scholarly consensus. With regard to depositing it without interest, it is better not to do that except in cases of necessity if the bank deals with interest, because depositing money with the bank, even if no interest is paid, helps the bank to engage in its riba-based transactions, so there is the fear that the one who does this may come under the heading of those who help others in sin and transgression, even if he does not intend to do so. We must beware of that which Allaah has forbidden and look
for sound ways of preserving and disposing of wealth. May Allaah help the Muslims to do that which will lead to their happiness and victory and salvation. May He help them to quickly establish Islamic banks that are free of riba, for He is Able to do that. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.
Fataawa Ibn Baaz, 4/30, 311

See also question no. 22392

And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A
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PostSubject: Re: Keeping Money in Riba-Based Bank   Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:09 pm

Depositing money in a riba-based bank

Is it allowed for me to keep the money in the Bank for transactions only, if i will not take any Interest on the deposited money. But obviously bank will use this interest for themselves

Praise be to Allaah.

It is not permissible to put money in a bank that deals in riba (usury or interest), and the Muslim should not do that unless he is forced to, in which case the following three conditions apply:

1 – He should have the need to do that, meaning that there is no safe place to keep his money except this bank. If he can find another place where he can keep his money apart from this riba-based bank, then it is not permissible for him to deposit his money in this bank which deals with riba.

2 – The bank should not deal one hundred percent with riba; if the bank’s dealings are one hundred percent with riba then it is not permissible to deposit his money with them at all, if you deposit money in the bank then in this case you can be certain that you have helped
the bank engage in riba, and it is not permissible to help anyone with riba.

3 – The depositor should not take any profit, because if he takes any profit that will be riba, and riba is haraam according to the Qur’an and Sunnah and the consensus of the Muslims.

With regard to the questioner’s saying that if he does not take the interest the bank will take it:

This is not interest, rather it is riba which is haraam, and it belongs to the bank in the first place. The depositor does not have the right to take anything of it, because Allaah has commanded us to abstain from riba when He said (interpretation of the meaning):

“O you who believe! Be afraid of Allaah and give up what remains (due to you) from Ribaa (from now onward) if you are (really) believers”
[al-Baqarah 2:278]

And He warned against taking riba when He said:

“And if you do not do it, then take a notice of war from Allaah and His Messenger”
[al-Baqarah 2:278-279]

It should also be noted that depositing this money in the banks is not regarded as depositing it in the shar’i sense, because depositing something in sharee’ah means leaving it with someone for safekeeping, which means that the owner cannot use it; but when money is
deposited in the bank, the bank uses the money, so it is a form of lending, not depositing for safekeeping. The fuqaha’ have explained this point, that if the depositor gives the keeper permission to use his money, it is no longer a deposit for safekeeping, rather it is a loan. (Therefore anything added to the principle is riba).

And Allaah knows best. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad.

See Fataawa Manaar al-Islam, 2/433-440 by Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid
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