ʿUrf (Custom)
15 December، 1988

In the Name of Allāh,

the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful

Praise is due to Allāh, Lord of the worlds, may the blessings and peace be upon our master Muḥammad, the last of prophets, on his family, and all his companions.

Resolution No. 47 (9/5) ʿUrf (Custom)

The Council of the International Islamic Fiqh Academy of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, holding its 5th session in Kuwait City, State of Kuwait, on 1–6 Jumādā al-Ūlā 1409h (10–15 December 1988),

Having examined the research papers of the Academy’s members and experts concerning ʿUrf (Custom),

Having listened to the discussions on the subject,


First: The term ʿUrf refers to any saying, habit, or a disregard people do and are used to it, which may or may not be recognized by Shariah.

Second: If ʿUrf is a specific custom, it is recognized by those who subscribe to it. On the other hand, if it is a general custom, it is recognized by all.

Third: To be recognized by Shariah, an ʿUrf should meet the following conditions:

  1. It should be in conformity with Shariah. If it contradicts a text or a rule of Shariah, then it is corrupt custom.
  2. It should be permanent or
  3. It should already exist at the time of the issue
  4. The contracting parties should not pronounce against it, in which case it is not enforceable.

Fourth: A Faqih – whether a muftī or a judge – should not confine him- self to the dictums contained in Fiqh books without giving due regard to the changing customs.

Indeed, Allāh is All-Knowing.

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