Zakah: On women's jewelry in relation to her social status

Q726 :I have heard that women need not pay zakah on jewelry, if it is within the limits of their social status. Is the above criterion not ambiguous? How does a woman quantify her jewelry in relation to her social status? She may feel that whatever she has is still below her social status. Please explain.

A726 : What you have said about zakah on jewelry is correct. A woman need not pay any zakah for her jewelry if it is within what is considered to be reasonable for women in her social status. Now this is not as vague as you are saying. What a woman should consider is whether her mother, her sisters, cousins or other people who enjoy the same standard of living as herself have a more or less similar amount of jewelry. If so, then what she has is within what is reasonable for her. If she has what other people like herself, or her sisters, etc. consider to be very excessive or luxurious, then this is certainly not reasonable for her. In this case she should consider whether it is truly excessive and, therefore, liable to zakah. We must not forget that in this question we are dealing with Allah who knows everything and who knows our intentions. Persons who do not care about their religious duties, may not bother about the payment of zakah. But that will turn eventually to their detriment. They have to answer to Allah about their failure to meet their religious duties. That sort of question is not the kind one looks forward to. It is much better to be able to say to Allah that we have fulfilled our duties. He will then forgive us our sins. Unfortunately, many people do not behave in this way. On the day of judgment, they will realize that they have much to regret.

Our Dialogue ( Source : Arab News - Jeddah )