Q: My husband,
`Aly Al-Hamad Al-Sulayman,
died 10 years ago. His estate went to his wife and his two sons. Before he died, he (may Allah be merciful to him) bequeathed one third of his property to be spent on charitable works. He made this will before he married me and before I gave birth to his second son. He had his eldest son by his first wife whom he divorced. After that he died and the will remains as it is. Since he died, this one third of his estate is frozen under the supervision of the legal guardian, my husband's cousin. He did not use it or even any part of it. When I asked the guardian to give me a part of this third of the estate to spend on charitable activities such as helping some needy persons among my relatives and settling the debt of my brothers, he said that he has no objection to give me this part of the estate (Part No. 16; Page No. 368) provided that I bring him a written legal Fatwa that proves that I deserve to receive this part. It should be noted that one third of the estate is a large sum of money. Praise be to Allah.I hope Your Eminence will tell me whether I have the right to ask for this
third of the estate to spend on charitable activities, or if I should let the guardian spend it
if I guide him to the charitable deeds such as helping my needy relatives, and paying my brother's debts. It should be noted that the term of settling these debts is due and my brother cannot afford to pay. It should also be noted that the guardian, my husband's cousin, is a good, reliable and trustworthy person. He just stipulated that I bring him a legal Fatwa to be free of blame and responsibility and also to execute the will.
The guardian has to spend the one third of the legacy that is bequeathed for charitable deeds after consulting the competent judge. Consequently, if he needs any advice, he should resort to the competent judge and ask him about the problems he has as regards the channels of spending the bequeathed money. May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.