Selling Business to Daughter Who is Smarter than the Sons

By Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Posted: 14 Rabi-ul-Awwal 1423, 27 May 2002

Q.) May one sell a business to a daughter (smart, good character, head for business) so she will be in charge over her two brothers who are not as capable as she? My daughter is smart and trustworthy and while I love my sons, they don't have her maturity or character. If I leave it to inheritance, they would be majority holders and will squander their inheritance. Is this Islamic? Is this okay in Shari'ah? [Paul]

A.) A.) It is emphasized in the Shari'ah to maintain equality between one's children. In a famous hadith Nu'maan ibn Basheer, Radi-Allahu anhu, narrates that once his father gave a gift to one of his sons and told Rasulullah Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam about it. Nabi Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam inquired, 'Did you present to all your children likewise.' He replied, 'No.' Thereafter, Nabi Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam asked him to take back his gift. (Muslim vol.2 pg.36; H.M. Saeed)

The above Hadith indicates the discomfort of Nabi Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam when equality has not been maintained amongst children. Therefore, instead of selling the business to your daughter, we advise you make all 3 children equal shareholders in the business. However, administration and running authority may be handed over to your daughter. In this way, equality will be maintained and the inheritance will be saved from being squandered. And Allah Ta'ala Knows best