Does a Waqf need to be in writing?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.
Classically, the Islamic jurists state that Waqf could be formed in the following manner:
- Orally by simply pronouncing something as “Waqf” or inferring Waqf.
- Sign language which indicates to Waqf.
- In writing.
- In conduct when establishing a property as a masjid. A property can only be designated as a masjid when people begin to use it as a masjid and perform Salah therein.
However, given that the current legal framework does not recognise the above performances as Waqf, Waqf should be formulated through legal documentation and in writing to protect the Waqf and the end beneficiaries of Waqf. Otherwise, there is great risk of Waqf assets being misused and mistreated.
And Allah Alone Knows Best
Mufti Faraz Adam,
I Waqf Shariah Advisor