Who is exempt from fasting in the month of Ramadan? Please benefit us, May Allāh reward you with good.

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Who is exempt from fasting in the month of Ramadan? Please benefit us, May Allāh reward you with good.


Those who are exempt are;

1. The one who has lost his sanity and consciousness.

2. The young boy and girl who have not reached puberty.

3. The sick person.

4. The traveller.

5. The menstruating and postpartum woman.


As for the menstruating and postpartum women, then essentially fasting is obligatory. However, their condition prevents them from being allowed to fast. They have to make up the fasting days missed in Ramadaan after their menses and postnatal period have ended.


As for the sick and the traveller, it is permissible for them to fast or break their fast in Ramadaan. Breaking their fast is recommended. This is based on the statement of Allāh:


وَمَن كَانَ مَرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ فَعِدَّةٌ مِّنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ


Whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number [of days which one did not fast must be made up] from other days.

(Al Baqarah, 2:185)


However, if the sick person's illness is terminal, after confirmation from trustworthy doctors, then neither fasting is obligatory for him nor is it mandatory to make it up. Instead, it is upon him to feed a poor person for every day he broke his fast. The amount due is two combined prophetic handfuls (approximately 1.087kg).

This also applies to the elderly man and woman who are unable to fast. They have to feed a poor person two prophetic handfuls of their normal food for each day they did not fast. Fasting is not upon them nor is making it up after Ramadaan. It is also permissible for them to pay the compensation in one go, for the whole month. This can be done at the beginning, the end, or during the month. It can be given to one person (every day of the month) or more.

As for the pregnant and breastfeeding woman, if they find fasting difficult, they are allowed to break their fast and make it up just like the traveller and the sick.


The scholars differed concerning the ruling on pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers if they are unable to fast. There are several opinions.

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1. That they have to feed the poor only, and not make up the fasts.

Among the Sahaabah, this was the view of ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Abbaas (رضي الله عنه). Ibn Qudaamah also narrated this in al-Mughni (3/37) from Ibn ‘Umar (رضي الله عنه).


Ibn ‘Abbās (رضي الله عنه) said: “If the pregnant woman fears for herself, or the breastfeeding woman for her child in Ramadaan, then they are to break their fast and in place feed a poor person for each day and they are not to make up the missed days.”

(Reported in at-abarānī, 2758 with a chain of narrators of the same calibre as the narrators found in the authentic collection of al-Bukhārī and Muslim. See al-Irwāa al-Ghalīl, 4:19. Also refer to Ad-Daraqunī, 250)

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2. That they have to make up the fasts only.

This is the view of Imam Abu Haneefah. Among the Sahaabah, it was the view of ‘Ali ibn Abi Taalib (رضي الله عنه).


They cited the analogy to the sick. Just as the sick are allowed not to fast and have to make it up later, the same applies to those who are pregnant and breastfeeding.

(Al-Mughni, 3/37; al-Majmoo’, 6/273)

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3. That if they fear for themselves, they have to make up the fast only, and if they fear for their children then they have to make up the fasts and feed one poor person for each day. This is the view of Imam al-Shaafi’i and Imam Ahmad.

Al-Jassaas also narrated this from Ibn ‘Umar (رضي الله عنه).


And Allah Knows Best









ﺳُﺒﺤَﺎﻧَﻚَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻬُﻢَّ ﻭَﺑِﺤَﻤْﺪِﻙَ ﺃﺷْﻬَﺪُ ﺃﻥ ﻟَﺎ ﺇِﻟَﻪَ ﺇِﻻَّ ﺃﻧْﺖَ ﺃﺳْﺘَﻐْﻔِﺮُﻙَ ﻭﺃَﺗُﻮﺏُ ﺇِﻟَﻴْﻚ

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