Using a credit card.

Q. Can I get the fatwa on using a credit card? Does it fall under the category of riba? Also before getting one {credit card} you sign a contract stating that you would pay interest if you don’t pay on time?

A. With respect to the use of the credit card, some present day scholars have stated that this type of card should not be used by a Muslim, since it is possible that the card holder will have to pay interest in the case of late payment. However, other contemporary scholars (including the great scholar, Mufti Taqi Usmani) are of the view that if the credit card holder is confident that he will make the necessary payments within the fixed period (without delay), then he can use the credit card facility. In this case, the card holder must ensure that he pays the bill ‘on time’ before interest comes upon the account. (Contemporary Fatawa- Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani Pg. 179).

A similar fatawa has been issued by the other great contemporary scholar, Qazi Mufti Khalid Saifullah Rahman: In his fatawa, he stated, ‘It will be allowed to use the credit card when one saves himself from interest by paying the specified amount within the appointed time’. (Kitaabul fatawa No.5 Page 212-213).

In light of the explainations given for the above, we also concur with these verdicts and state that it will be allowed for a Muslim to use a credit card on the condition that he saves himself from interest, by paying the fixed amount within the specified time.

And Allah knows best.

Mufti Waseem Khan