Q: It is our custom in northern
that people pay some money to the deceased's family while offering condolences. Is it permissible to count this money as a part of the inheritance to be distributed between the inheritors?
This money belongs to the deceased's relatives to whom it was gifted. (Part No. 16; Page No. 433) As for the deceased, it is not permissible to give him a gift except if you give charity on his behalf and dedicate the reward to him. However,
giving frequent gifts to the deceased's family when offering condolences is an act of Bid`ah (innovation in religion) and does not have any religious origin. It also embarrasses the people who offer condolences. It is recommended to prepare food for them and if the deceased's family is poor, it is desirable to give them charity which will fulfill their needs. May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.