Assalamu Alaikum. I am currently living in US and i came here about 5 years ago under student visa for higher study. After my graduation, I got a job and started working here. In US after finishing school or college, government grants a 3-year work permit for the students. Students can work here for 3 years with that work permit under the same student visa. Within this 3 year they have to either change their visa to work visa or green card. Or else they have to leave after 3 years when the work permit expires. So, my employer applied for my green card, and I have still pending application within the immigration department. But unfortunately, due to some complications my processes took longer than expected and now I am out of my work authorization that I received after my graduation. So, I cannot continue working anymore with my current company. But I can stay here is US as long as my applications are pending. The state where I live car is a kind of necessity and you need to drive car for your daily chores and everything. Public transportation is not very good here. As soon as my work permit expired my driving license is also expired and I cannot renew that without a valid work permit. So, the situation is that I cannot work and also I cannot go anywhere in case of any need or emergencies. Also, health insurance is also will be inactive within couple of weeks. I live here with my wife who is on dependent visa and also not authorized to work. I am the only one to support my family. Looking at my situation my company suggested to continue working for them and they are going to pay me in cash. I have some savings that may last 4-5 months. And Allah knows how much time it may take for the immigration office to process my applications. It can take days, weeks or months or even a year. Only Allah knows. Because there is no specific timeline about the processing of applications. Whenever I try to inquire about my case, they just mention it’s in normal processing and the earliest I can inquire about my case is January 2024. They give me a statistics that 80% of the case that they processed within the last 6 months took an estimated of 15-17 months. So, my question is, will my income be halal if I continue working for my employer and take payment as cash? As I said, I have some savings that may last 4-5 months or may be maximum 6 months. I have requested multiple times the immigration office to expedite my application due to financial situation that I will fall in, but they rejected my application. Jazakallahu Khairan.
بسم الله الرحمٰن الرحيم
الجواب حامداً ومصلياً
As-salāmu ʿalaykum wa-raḥmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.
Muslims living in secular countries are subject to two sets of laws – the laws of the country of their residence and the laws of Islām, known as the Sharīʿah. Generally, the laws of secular countries are more broad, whereas the laws of Islām are more narrow. In other words, the laws of a secular country may allow a person to do something, but actually doing that thing remains forbidden for Muslims.
At other times, the converse is true. The laws of a country do not allow at thing, but Islāmic laws do. In such cases, a scholar’s answering that something is ḥalāl or ḥarām is not to be taken as an encouragement to break the law. It is only addressing the religious aspect of the question and not the secular aspect.
In the scenario described, your income would be ḥalāl.
Again, we do encourage everyone to follow the laws of this country. We make duʿāʾ that Allāh alleviates your distress and solves your immigration problems.
والله تعالى أعلم وعلمه أتم وبه التوفيق
And Allāh Taʿālā Knows Best
Muftī Mohammed Wahaajuddin bin Salauddin
(May Allāh forgive him and his parents)
الإختيار، كتاب الإجارة، ج٢ ص٥٠، دار الكتب العلمية
في المختار: هي بيع المنافع، جوزت على خلاف القياس لحاجة الناس
الفتاوى الهندية، كتاب الإجارة، الباب الأول، ج٤ ص٤٠٩، مطبعة الكبرى
(أما تفسيرها شرعا) فهي عقد على المنافع بعوض، كذا في الهداية
الحاوي القدسي، ج٢ ص٨٠،
لا تجب بنفس العقد، اإنما تستحق بأحد ثلاثة أثياء: شرط التعجيل، والتأجيل من غير شرط، واستيفاء المعقود عليه.
بدائع الصنائع، ج٤ ص١٨٠، سعيد
الأجرة لا تجب بنفس العقد على أصل أصحابنا، وإنما تجب عند استيفاء المعقود عليه وهو المنفعة
رد المحتار، كتاب الإجارة، ج٦ ص١٠، سعيد
(و) اعلم أن (الأجر لا يلزم بالعقد فلا يجب تسليمه) به (بل بتعجيله أو شرطه في الإجارة) المنجزة، أما المضافة فلا تملك فيها الأجرة بشرط التعجيل إجماعا. وقيل تجعل عقودا في كل الأحكام فيفي برواية تملكها بشرط التعجيل للحاجة شرح وهبانية للشرنبلالي (أو الاستيفاء)
وفي الشامية: (و) اعلم أن (الأجر لا يلزم بالعقد فلا يجب تسليمه) به (بل بتعجيله أو شرطه في الإجارة) المنجزة، أما المضافة فلا تملك فيها الأجرة بشرط التعجيل إجماعا. وقيل تجعل عقودا في كل الأحكام فيفي برواية تملكها بشرط التعجيل للحاجة شرح وهبانية للشرنبلالي (أو الاستيفاء)