The Official Website of the Office of His Eminence Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Husseini Al-Sistani

Question & Answer » Interest

1 Question: Can I take an urgent loan from a non-Muslim bank, even if I know that the bank will charge interest?
Answer: If a Muslim intends to get a loan from such banks, it is necessary that he should do so with the intention that it is a transaction without return, even if he knows that he will end up paying the capital as well as the interest. And he should not do so with the intention of getting the loan with the condition of [paying] interest.
2 Question: Is it permissible to take interest from unbelievers, especially for those who live in a non-Muslim country?
Answer: It is permissible to receive interest from non-Muslims and their banks.
3 Question: If I know that the bank will give me interest even without stipulating the conditions, is it permissible for me to deposit in a savings account that takes the form of a term-deposit?
Answer: Yes, it is permissible, as long as you do not stipulate the conditions of interest.
4 Question: Is it permissible to deposit or borrow money from Muslim banks whereby the interest is either received or paid out?
Answer: It is permissible to deposit money in a bank without prior condition for interest and it is as well permissible to take interest, if the bank in which money is deposited belongs to Muslims. If it belongs to government, it is permissible to take interest provided that half of the interest is given away to poor people (Momineen of them).
5 Question: Is it permitted to pay interest to non-Muslims and also take interest from them?
Answer: Giving interest to a non-Muslim in a deal that is based on interest is impermissible and receiving it (interest) is permissible and there is no objection in it.
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