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How to Make Up Fasting for Ramadan? 11 Missed Fasts Questions Answered 

How to Make Up Fasting for Ramadan? Find the answer to some of the most commonly asked questions regarding fasting and making up for missed days of fasting.  For instance, can you make up Ramadan days? How to make up fasting for Ramadan? When can you make up for your missed days? And what happens if you don’t make up for these days? Keep reading to know the answers to these questions and more!

How to Make Up Fasting for Ramadan 11 Missed Fasts Questions Answered 

In a nutshell: Fasting during Ramadan is obligatory for Muslims, but there are instances where individuals may miss fasting due to valid excuses or deliberate actions. In such cases, it becomes necessary to make up for the missed days of fasting. The rules for making up fasts vary depending on the circumstances. For instance, if fasting is missed due to temporary reasons like illness or travel, individuals are required to make up for the missed days after Ramadan.

However, those unable to fast due to permanent reasons may offer compensation by feeding a needy person for each missed day. Deliberately breaking the fast, especially through sexual intercourse, incurs greater penalties, including fasting for two consecutive months or feeding sixty poor people per day missed. It’s encouraged to make up missed fasts as soon as possible before the next Ramadan, with Fridays being permissible for making up missed fasts. Kaffarah, a form of charity, is also an option for those unable to fast. 

While there’s no specific dua for making up missed fasts, intending to fast is necessary. Failure to make up missed fasts without valid reasons is considered a sin, and individuals must repent and make up for them.

The Rules For Making Up the Fast for Ramadan:

There are two cases where Muslims should make up for fasting. The first case is making up for breaking the fast due to a valid excuse, while the second case is making up for deliberately breaking the fast without an excuse. 

Islam is the religion of Mercy and ease. Therefore, Allah has put many exceptions for fasting so as not to cause difficulty or hardships to Muslims who cannot fast due to various reasons such as health problems, old age, traveling, or pregnant and lactating females.

Now, let us discuss each of these two cases. What happens if you miss a day of fasting during Ramadan and how to make up for fasting in each case?

A) The Rules Of Making up for fasting due to a valid excuse

In case you missed some days of fasting during Ramadan for a valid temporary excuse such as illness, traveling, or menstruation, pregnancy, and lactation in females, you are required to make up for these days after Ramadan either consecutively or separately.

However, those who are unable to make up for the missed days due to permanent reasons such as patients with chronic illnesses or elderly people, are supposed to pay “Kaffarah” which is feeding a needy person instead of each missed day of Ramadan.

B) Making up for intentionally violating the fast of Ramadan

Whoever deliberately breaks his fast during Ramadan has committed a great sin that requires repentance to Allah, feeling regret, and intending to never repeat this act in the future. He must then make up for that day on which he broke his fast.

Nevertheless, if his fast was discontinued due to sexual intercourse, then he must make the “greatest Kaffarah”, which is fasting for two consecutive months, and if he cannot then feed sixty poor people for each day. 

This is according to the Hadith narrated by Abu Hurairah, a man came to the Messenger of Allah and said, 

“l am ruined, O Messenger of Allah!” The Messenger of Allah asked him, “What has ruined you?” The man replied, ‘I had intercourse with my wife during the day in Ramadan while fasting)’ The Prophet said to him, “Are you able to free a slave?” The man said, ‘No.’ The Prophet said, “Can you fast for two consecutive months?” He said, ‘NO.’ The Prophet then asked him, “Can you provide food for sixty poor people?” He said, ‘No.’ Then the man sat down. A basket of dates was brought to the Prophet and he said to the man, “Give this as Sadaqah (voluntary charity)” The man said, ‘To someone who is poorer than us!’ There is no one in this city (Al-Madinah) who is in need of these dates more than us!’ The Prophet laughed until his molar teeth could be seen and said to the man, “Go and feed your family with these dates.” Related by the seven Imams and the wording is from Muslim.

However, if breaking his fast is due to eating or drinking, it is more likely that he does not require the greatest Kaffarah, but rather he must repent and seek Allah’s forgiveness, and make up for that day only.

What If I Delay Fasting Beyond the Next Ramadan?

Muslims are encouraged to make up for the missed days of fasting as early as possible, however, if the reason for breaking the fast remains till the next Ramadan such as in case of illness or lactation, The Imams agreed that whoever breaks the fast on days of Ramadan should spend those days before the next Ramadan comes, and the sooner he makes up for them, the better it will be.

As the Mother of believers ‘Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) used to Make up for the days of fasting that she missed in Sha’ban.

Al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar (may Allah have mercy on him) said: “It is understood from her keenness to do so in Sha’ban that it is not permissible to delay the fast until another Ramadan enters.” 

Whoever delays fasting beyond the next Ramadan, with an excuse, as in case of  illness that continues until the next Ramadan, he is not considered sin due to this delay, because he is excused, and he only has to make up for it.

While if someone delays fasting until the next Ramadan and was not excused, he is a sinner by delaying it, and the imams agreed that he should eliminate it with repentance from that, but they differed whether it is obligatory to feed a poor person for every day in addition to fasting or not?

The imams Malik, al-Shaafa’i and Ahmad (may Allah have mercy on them) said that he had to feed.

On the other hand, Imam Abu Hanifa (may Allah have mercy on him) was of the view that it is not obligatory to feed in addition to fasting. This opinion depended on the Quranic verse, “a limited number of days. So whoever among you is ill or on a journey [during them] – then an equal number of days [are to be made up]. And upon those who are able [to fast, but with hardship] – a ransom [as substitute] of feeding a poor person [each day]. And whoever volunteers excess – it is better for him. But to fast is best for you, if you only knew.” (Al Baqarah 2:184)

Can I Fast on Friday to Make up For Ramadan?

Yes, fasting on Friday to make up for Ramadan is allowed. The same applies for any other obligatory fasting such as vows and expectations.

However, it is not permissible to single out Fridays with voluntary fasts except for those who are used to fasting on alternate days which means that one week they will be fasting on Friday while the next week they will fast on Saturday and so on.

Prophet Muhammad peace and blessings be upon him said, “Do not choose the Friday night among all other nights for standing in (Tahajjud) prayer, and do not choose Friday among all other days for Saum (fasting) except that one you have accustomed to.” [Muslim].

Can You Make Up Your Fasts After Ramadan?

Yes, you can make up for the missing days of fasting at any time before the next Ramadan, as narrated by Aisha: “I would not make up what was due upon me from Ramadan except in Sha’ban, until the Messenger of Allah died. (Jami At Tirmidhi)

Is There a specific Dua for Making up Missed Fasts?

There is no need to make a specific Dua before you make up for your missed fasts. However, making an intention in your heart at any time during the night to fast the next day is necessary for obligatory fasting.

What is the Punishment for Not Making up your missed days?

It is obligatory to fast the month of Ramadan for every adult, able Muslim; for Allah the Almighty says:  “Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was revealed. Guidance for humanity, and clear proofs of the guidance, and the Criterion. 

Whoever of you witnesses the month shall fast it. But whoever is sick, or traveling, then a number of other days. Allah intends ease for you, and He does not intend difficulty for you, so that you may complete the number, and glorify Allah for having guided you, so that you may be thankful”. (Al-Baqarah: 185).

Imam Ibn Kathir said in his Tafseer “Fasting is compulsory for the one who witnessed the beginning of the month, i.e.: He was residing in the country at the beginning of the month of Ramadan.

In other words, if you miss a fast without an excuse, it is considered a sin and you will eventually have to make up for the missed day. 

WHAT IS KAFFARAH? And Who should you give your Fidya and Kaffarah?

Kaffarah (Fidya) is a form of charity or donation that is done as a compensation by those who have missed some days of fasting and cannot make up for them due to a valid excuse such as long term illness. Kaffarah is given as a meal to a poor person for every missed day of fasting.

How Much is Fidya For the Missed Fast?

Fidya for Ramadan 2024 is estimated to be around $5. Nowadays, many websites provide Fidya calculators so that you can easily calculate the exact amount of Fidya that you should pay and also help you pay your Fidya online.

Is it allowed to make up missed fasts from Ramadan on Monday and Thursday fast?

Yes, you can make up for your missed fasts on Mondays and Thursdays. However, you will be rewarded for your intention of making up for the compulsory fasting. 

Nevertheless, you will get the benefit of presentation of your deeds to Allah while you are fasting; as the prophet Muhammad peace and blessings be upon him said: “Deeds of people are presented (to Allah) on Mondays and Thursdays. So I like that my actions be presented while I am fasting.” [At-Tirmidhi].

It is worth mentioning that making up for an obligatory fast requires the intention at any time before Al-Fajr prayer, unlike voluntary fasting in which you can make the intention of fasting at any time throughout the day.

How to make up for years of missed fast?

This is one of the most commonly asked questions especially for females who have missed the fast of Ramadan for successive years due to repeated pregnancy and lactation

If you have missed fasting for several years due to pregnancy and breastfeeding, you should estimate the number of missed days, then make a fasting schedule so that you can make up for these days. In this case, you are free to fast the missed days either separately or successively. You can also make up for the missed days of Ramadan on Mondays, Thursdays, or on the three lunar days in the middle of the Hijri months.

In a different context, and as we previously mentioned, a Muslim who misses several years of fasting without an excuse must repent to Allah and seek his forgiveness. After that, he needs to calculate the number of days that he most likely has missed and fast the same number of days or feed one needy person for every day in case he is unable to fast. 

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Conclusion:

In this article, we highlighted some general guidelines on how to make up fasting for Ramadan. However, in many cases it is recommended to ask for the guidance of a Muslim scholar as Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala said: “We did not send before you except men, whom We inspired. Ask the people of knowledge, if you do not know.” (Quran 21:7)

Making up missed fasts in Ramadan is an essential aspect of Islamic practice, governed by specific rules and guidelines. Muslims are obligated to compensate for missed days due to valid excuses, with options ranging from fasting consecutively after Ramadan to offering charity for those unable to fast permanently. 

Deliberately breaking the fast incurs more severe penalties, emphasizing the importance of repentance and restitution. It’s crucial to seek guidance from knowledgeable scholars in matters of Islamic law to ensure adherence to religious obligations.

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