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30. Usurpation (Ghaṣb)

Usurpation is when a person unjustly takes control over the property or right of someone else. It is something that the intellect, Qur’an, and traditions all judge to be unlawful (ḥarām). It has been reported that the most noble Messenger (Ṣ) said: ‘Whosoever usurps one span of land from another, seven layers of that land will be hung around his neck like a collar on the Day of Resurrection.’

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  • Ruling 2563

    If a person does not allow people to make use of a mosque, school, bridge, or any other place that has been built for public use, he will have usurped their right. And if a person reserves a …

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  • Ruling 2564

    If a depositor and a depositee agree that the item that has been deposited [as security] will remain in the depositee’s possession or in the possession of a third party, the depositor cannot take back the item before …

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  • Ruling 2565

    If an item that has been deposited with someone is usurped by a third party, both the owner of the property and the depositee can claim the usurped item from the usurper. And in the event that they …

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  • Ruling 2566

    If a person usurps something, he must return it to its owner. And if the item is destroyed and it was of some value, he must replace it for the owner as per the explanation in Rulings 2576 …

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  • Ruling 2567

    If some gain is acquired from an item that has been usurped – for example, a usurped sheep gives birth to a lamb – it will belong to the owner. Similarly, if a person usurps a house, for …

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  • Ruling 2568

    If a person usurps property that belongs to a child or to an insane person, he must return it to their guardian (walī). And if the property is destroyed, he must replace it.

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  • Ruling 2569

    If two people usurp something together and each of them has complete control over it, they are both responsible (ḍāmin) for it even if neither of them could has usurped the property on his own.

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  • Ruling 2570

    If a person mixes something that he has usurped with something else – for example, he mixes wheat that he has usurped with barley – then, in the event that it is possible to separate the two items, …

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  • Ruling 2571

    If a person usurps a piece of gold that has been crafted, such as an earring, and melts it, he must return it to the owner along with the difference in its value before and after it was …

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  • Ruling 2572

    If a person changes something that he has usurped into something better – for example, he makes an earring from gold that he has usurped – then, in the event that the owner says, ‘Give me the item …

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