The World Federation One Stop Fiqh

Ruling 1433

The imam of congregational prayers must be bāligh, sane (ʿāqil), a Twelver Shia, dutiful (ʿādil), of legitimate birth, and a person who performs prayers correctly. Furthermore, if the follower is a man, the imam must also be a man. The validity of following a ten year old child, although it has some basis, is problematic [i.e. based on obligatory precaution, one must not follow a ten year old child]. Being ‘dutiful’ means he does the things that are obligatory for him and refrains from doing the things that are unlawful for him. The sign of being dutiful is that he appears to be a good person, [and this is sufficient] as long as one does not have information that contradicts this.