What do we do if the nisab rate fluctuates before our zakat anniversary date?
July 11, 2015
Q: A year ago, I passed the nisab and I took note of the date and nisab amount. Before my zakah due date, I fell below that recorded nisab, but by then the current nisab had also fallen below what I possesed (so I have less than the nisab of the very first day I became zakah liable, but I have more than the current nisab).
Do I have to pay zakah? If so, should I keep the same zakah due date and re-record the new nisab? And if not, since I’m above the latest nisab, should I record the latest nisab as my nisab for next year, or should I base my zakah liability on my recorded nisab from last year, when I first became eligible?
الجواب حامدا ومصليا ومسلما ومنه الصدق والصواب
A: The nisab is always measured by either gold or silver or the lower of the two in value. This is 20 mithqaal [7.5 tolas or 87.48 grams] of gold or 200 dhirhams [52.5 tolas or 612.36 grams] of silver. As the nisab of silver is lower in value it is the adopted nisab for currency. If the value in currency is different at the end of the year but still reaches the current level of nisab then zakat is payable. You keep the same zakat due date according to the lunar calendar. On your next zakat anniversary you will need to look at the prevailing value of silver not the historical value.