what is the ruling on a person who catches the last Rak`ah (unit) of the Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer with the Imam. How should he offer the first two Rak`ahs that he missed? Should he recite the Qur'an in a loud or quiet voice? Should he separate them with Tashahhud (a recitation in the sitting position in the second Prayer)? Should he recite short Surahs after Al-Fatihah? Please inform us of the most appropriate opinion in this regard.
According to the most appropriate view held by scholars regarding a latecomer is that the Rak`ahs which he catches with the Imam are considered to be the first part of his Salah (Prayer). Accordingly, a person who catches the last Rak`ah of the Maghrib Prayer should stand up to make up for the two Rak`ahs which he missed. In the first Rak`ah he has to recite Al-Fatihah and a short Surah of the Qur'an in a loud voice, then sit for Tashahhud. Then rise up from Tashahhud to offer the second Rak`ah in which he recites Al-Fatihah only in a low voice. Then he should sit for the last Tashahhud. As for the Tashahhud which he caught while praying with the Imam, it is only made so as to follow the Imam.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.