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Ruling 2134

The right to annul a transaction is referred to as a khiyār (option). A buyer or a seller can annul a transaction in one of the following eleven cases:
 

  1. when the buyer and the seller have not departed from each other, even though they may have left the meeting place of the transaction. This option is known as ‘the option while meeting’ (khiyār al‑majlis);
  2. when either the buyer or the seller in the case of a sale, or one of the two parties of a transaction in the case other transactions, has been cheated. This is referred to as ‘the option due to cheating’ (khiyār al‑ghabn). The establishment of this type of option stems from something that is rooted in common custom, namely, that in every transaction each party in the transaction has in his mind that the property he receives should not be drastically lower in value than the property he gives in return; and if it is drastically lower, he should have the right to annul the transaction. However, in the event that in some cases something else is rooted in a particular custom – for example, that if someone receives a property that is lower in value than the property he gives in return, he can claim the difference between the two from the other party, and if this is not possible he can annul the transaction – then in such cases, that particular custom must be observed;
  3. when the parties stipulate in the contract that either one of them or both of them can annul the transaction within a specified period of time. This option is referred to as ‘the option due to a stipulated condition’ (khiyār al‑sharṭ);
  4. when one of the parties of the transaction displays his property in a way that it looks better than what it truly is and this makes the other party desirous of it or increases his desire for it. This is referred to as ‘the option due to deceit’ (khiyār al‑tadlīs);
  5. when one of the parties of the transaction makes a condition with the other that he will do something but he does not fulfil that condition; or, he makes it a condition that the specified property which is to be given by the other party must be of a special type but he discovers that it is not of that type. In these cases, the person who makes the condition can annul the transaction. This is known as ‘the option due to a breach of condition’ (khiyār takhalluf al‑sharṭ);
  6. when there is a defect in the commodity or in the payment exchanged for it. This is referred to as ‘the option due to a defect’ (khiyār al‑ʿayb);
  7. when it is later discovered that part of the commodity that was transacted belonged to someone else. In this case, if the owner does not consent to the transaction, the receiver of the commodity can annul the transaction or take back what he paid in exchange for it, in the event that he had already paid for it. This is referred to as ‘the option due to a partnership’ (khiyār al‑shirkah);
  8. when the owner describes to the other party the particulars of a specific commodity which the other party has not seen and it is later discovered that the commodity is not as it was described; or, the other party had previously seen the commodity and thought that it still possessed the qualities he had seen in the past and it is later discovered that it no longer has those qualities. In this case, the other party can annul the transaction. This is referred to as ‘the option pertaining to seeing’ (khiyār al‑ruʾyah);
  9. when the buyer fails to hand over the payment for the commodity he purchased within three days and the seller has not yet handed over the commodity. In this case, the seller can annul the transaction. This applies when the seller gives the buyer a respite for paying the money but does not specify the period of time. However, if he does not give him any respite at all, he can annul the transaction after a short delay in the payment of the money. And if he gives a respite of more than three days, he cannot annul the transaction until the respite period is over. Furthermore, if the commodity he sold is something like vegetables or fruit which deteriorates before three days, the respite period is less. This option is referred to as ‘the option due to delay’ (khiyār al‑taʾkhīr);
  10. when a person purchases an animal, he can annul the transaction within three days. And if he acquires an animal in exchange for something that he sells, the seller can annul the transaction within three days of the sale. This is referred to as ‘the option pertaining to animals’ (khiyār al‑ḥayawān);
  11. when the seller is unable to hand over the commodity he sold; for example, the horse that he sold runs away. In this case, the buyer can annul the transaction. This is referred to as ‘the option due to an inability to hand over’ (khiyār taʿadhdhur al‑taslīm).