Muslim being executor of non-Muslim's estate
25 Aug 2011 12:29 GMT
I accepted Islam six years ago. My mother, who is not-Muslim, has asked me to be an executor of her will along with my non-Muslim brother. This will involve making sure that her house and property are sold and distributed according to her wishes. It does not involve arranging her funeral rites. I understand that she intends to distribute her wealth such that 20% would be given to me and 20% would be given to my children. This is her wish. My mother is very dear to me, can I agree to do this as it would mean a lot to her?

Answered by

Sheikh `Abd al-`Azîz b. Bâz

It is permissible for you to be the executor of your mother’s will by selling her house and properties and distributing the collected money according to her wishes. This is part of being kind to your mother. Allah says: “Yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration)” [Sûrah Luqmân: 15]

However, I would like to draw your attention to the fact that a Muslim does not inherit from an unbeliever. Usâmah b. Zayd related that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “The Muslim does not inherit from the unbeliever and the unbeliever does not inherit from the Muslim.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (6383) and Sahîh Muslim (1614)].

However, in this case there is a written will from your mother, so you may receive up to one-third of the estate (33.33%) as a bequest. This is the amount of a person’s estate that he can bequeath to non-inheritors. Since the percentage your mother wishes to give to you and your sons is 40% (20% for you and 20% for your sons), it slightly exceed that percentage. Therefore, you may not receive that excess unless it is approved by all the other inheritors.

And Allah knows best.

Source: Islam Today

-- Al Arabiya Digital