Kaffarah applies to fasting during the Holy month of Ramadan and is the compensation that you must pay if you deliberately miss or break a fast in Ramadan without a valid reason to do so. If an individual deliberately breaks a fast, they must make up for the missed fast with the obligatory Kaffarah penalty. Kaffarah involves either feeding sixty people in need at a rate of £4 per day (amounting to a total of £240 for each broken fast) or fasting for sixty continuous days. This must be sixty days one after the other, with no missed days in-between. The only interruption which will not invalidate the Kaffarah is the monthly menses of women.
An individual who is unable to fast due to age or illness will need to feed sixty disadvantaged people in place of fasting for sixty continuous days. The Kaffarah can be done on a single day by feeding sixty people or giving cash or grain to sixty people. Alternatively, it can be spread over a period of sixty days. One person in need may be fed or given cash/grain each day over the course of sixty days.
If you missed your Ramadan fast due to an illness which you have since recovered from, it is obligatory to pay your Kaffarah through fasting for sixty continuous days. Any money previously given to those in need will become a charity rather than Kaffarah.
If you begin your Kaffarah on the first day of the Islamic month, then fasting continuously for two full Islamic months will suffice for the Kaffarah. This applies even if the total number of days in the two months equals 58 days (in the case of 29-day months).
Fidya is similar to Kaffarah in so far as it is an obligatory penalty to make up for missing a fast during Ramadan, however, Fidya is paid on behalf of an individual who is unable to fast. Valid reasons for missing a fast and paying Fidya include medical conditions, pregnancy, breastfeeding, and travelling. The current rate of Fidya is set at £4 for each missed fast – this should provide one person with two meals. If an individual does not fast at all during Ramadan, Fidya would amount to £120.
This year, UK Islamic Mission will continue to reach out to support Kaffara and Fidya, make your donation and get involved.