Is it permissible to under-declare income for a means-tested grant?

Q: I would like to know, if a student applies for a means tested grant, is the money halal, if the parent is required to declare their income in the application and they fail to declare it truthfully.  Is the student blameworthy for applying despite not being able to persuade the parent to declare their full income truthfully.

الجواب حامدا ومصليا ومنه الصدق والصواب

A: It is not permissible to apply for a means-tested grant whilst under declaring actual income.  To do so is fraud.  The award of such grant takes in to account the income of the applicant’s parents and if this is under declared one may receive more than one’s entitlement, or worse, not be eligible at all.  A Muslim should always be truthful and honest in his/her dealings.  Need does not absolve one from the requirement to be truthful and honest.

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