A child's earnings from his work as his possession

Q: I have five sons; four of them are full brothers and the fifth is a half-brother. My stepson asked me on 1380 A.H. to depend on his income and I agreed. The situation of the four brothers is as follows:One of them receives a low salary from Al Ma`had Al-`Ilmi (the Scientific Institute) which is not sufficient for him. The second had a job three years ago and his income hardly sustains him. The third started to work and earn money seven years ago. He may have money or he may be indebted. As for the fourth and eldest son, he has been assisting me since 1380 A.H. I have bought a house in Riyadh and paid for it from my income along with the income of my oldest son who also bought a piece of land in Riyadh. He obtained half of its price from the money of a piece of land he had sold and the other half of its price we paid from our incomes. He also bought a factory and paid for it from some money he borrowed from one of his friends. Then he paid for the factory and made some profit.Your Eminence, I hope you will give me a legal ruling regarding the following:1- Do the brothers deserve shares in the house mentioned above (Part No. 16; Page No. 234) or does it belong to the older brother alone since it is he who assisted me in paying for it?2- Is the property that they own theirs or it is permissible for me to take from it or does all that they earn belong to me?I think that my sons and I have had the same financial status since 1380 A.H. It should be noted that we live together in the same house. It should also be noted that they bought their property by themselves. They did not sell any of my property which I bought before they reached the age of puberty and started to earn money. My income at the present time is sufficient to sustain me. I need your advice. May Allah reward you best!


A: If the reality is as you have mentioned, first, half of the house you bought in Riyadh belongs to your eldest son and the other half is yours, for both of you and none of the other brothers paid for it. You should be just to your sons as regards the half that belongs to you; acting upon the saying of the Prophet (peace be upon him): Be afraid of Allah, and be just to your children. This will be the case unless you both intended that the house belongs to all the brothers or your eldest son intended that it all belongs to you alone. Second, (Part No. 16; Page No. 235)  The money earned by each of your children belongs to them as long as you are not in bad need of it. As regards the factory that your son bought and paid for from his income, it belongs to him as well as its profit and none of his brothers has a share in it. As regards the piece of land which your eldest son bought in Riyadh, half of it belongs to him because he paid for it from his income and the other half is a fifty-fifty property between you and him because you both paid for it from your incomes. Therefore, you own one fourth of this piece of land and you should be just to all your sons respecting it according to the Hadith mentioned previously. The money that your sons earn by their efforts belongs to them unless you are in bad need of it. In that case, what fulfills your need is yours. If you agreed or intended that you share all that you earn, the money you earn will be joint property according to this intention or agreement and according to the Hadith: The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions. May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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