Giving financial aid to those who wish to marry
Is it permissible to give material and financial aid from zakat funds to those who wish to marry but do not have the means to do so?
According to the Malikis and some Hanbalis, it is permissible to give zakat to those who wish to marry but have no means. They said that this includes giving sufficient financial aid from zakat funds to assist such a person if he does not have a wife and needs to marry )Hasheyat al-Rawd al-Murabba', 1/400).
The Maliki scholar, Imam al-Hattab, said: "Al-Burzuli mentioned that an orphan girl is given the expenses of her marriage needs from zakat funds. Based on this, it is a priority that a girl who does not have the articles and jewelry that are necessary for marriage to be given [financial aid] from zakat funds" (Sharh Mukhtasar Khalil, 2/347).
It has been reported that `Umar ibn Abdul-Aziz instructed one of his officials to call upon the people and ask: "Where are the poor? Where are the indebted? Where are those who wish to marry?" He wanted to give them money from the Muslim public treasury.
Zakat is only obligatory upon Muslims because it is taken from their rich and given to their poor.
The principle regarding zakat upon money is that it be paid in cash. However, since the aim of zakat is to benefit the recipient, there is no harm in giving it out as material goods if he is in need of them.
It is permissible to give zakat upon money in cash to those who wish to marry but do
not have the means to do so. It is likewise permissible to give it out as material goods if this fulfills the recipient’s needs.
And God Almighty knows best.