Do I have to pay Zakat if I don’t work?
Q: I have stopped working, but when I was self-employed I saved up money. My husband is also unemployed and has no savings. Do I need to pay Zakat?
A: Zakat is not based on whether you have an income or not, rather it is based on the amount of wealth that you have on the Zakat anniversary date.
At NZF we hold the opinion that Zakat needs to be paid once a year and the calculation will be based on what you have on your Zakat anniversary date. This method of calculation is the easiest way to calculate Zakat and it is in line with the Hanafi school of jurisprudence.
Hence, on your Zakat anniversary date, you will have to add all the zakatable assets which you have, minus any current liabilities; if the resulting net amount is either equal to or above the Nissab on the day, then you will pay Zakat on the total, otherwise, if the resulting net amount is below the Nissab then you will not have to pay anything.
As for your husband, he will have to do the same for his zakat calculation, so if he has nothing which at least, equals the Nissab level on that day then he will not have to pay zakat.
Note: If you can’t pay the Zakat in full when the time comes, then you can pay it in instalments or as soon as you are able to pay it in the future.