Rulings regarding Buying Goods from Black Market

Question:

Assalamu’alaikum.

I want to ask a question, what is the ruling regarding buying goods from Black Market (BM)? For example, yesterday, my friend offered me a glasses (for nearsightedness) from BM, claiming that the item was exactly the similar item as those sold in the famous opticians, but with a far lower price.

May Allah blessed you,

Wassalamu ‘alaikum.

Masyatin Rais

Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer may always be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions.

Buying goods from places or people termed as Black Market is allowed, as long as the seller is truly the owner of the traded goods.

The status of black market is similar to the stores or stalls without business license, or it’s buildings are built without license and the owners do not have any business license, since administration affairs are the responsibility of the goods owner, and business places are not the responsibility of the buyers or consumers.

I want to ask you back: What is the ruling for you buying snacks or any other goods from the cadgers who do not own a business license at their places? Isn’t is also can be called black market, because the sellers do not own any business license? What is the difference between the cadgers and what-so-called black market?,

But if the seller is not the true owner of the goods, for example because he got the goods from stealing, robbing, or the like, it is not allowed for you to buy goods from him, since by buying it, you are helping him maintaining his wickedness. Furthermore, if you know that the seller is a stealer or robber, you are responsible to report his actions to the authorities so they can arrest him immediately and prevent his crime. And Allah knows best.

***

The following is the question of brother Donny E, which was the reply for the answer of Ustadz Muhammad Arifin Badri above. These questions and answers were posted in the mailing lists of Pengusaha Muslim (pm-fatwa) (Muslim Entrepreneur)

Question:

I was a bit surprised with your answer that allow people to buy goods from black market (BM). If the reason was merely due to license of place of business, such answer can be accepted. But what about black market that sells goods from smuggling or goods that enter a country without paying the entrance fee, such as cell phones or other electronic devices. If this is allowed in Islam, wouldn’t it creating loss to the country? Honestly I often get offers of cheap goods from abroad, but because the offers were in black market, I refused it since I know that the prices became low because no tax was imposed to it. Please give me an explanation.

Donny E.

Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer may always be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions.

To address your surprise about rulings regarding buying goods from black market, I’d like to suggest you to calm down a little, and do not be haste in viewing this problem.

Brother Donny, I am sure that you believe and have faith that religious laws must be upheld above all other laws and constitutions currently exist today, and in the future.

Brother, the term ‘black market’ existed as a direct effect of the constitutions or government rules, and not from sharia.

Before I answer your question, I want to ask you back: Will this term ‘black market’ still attached on several goods, if one day the government adopt the free trade system? Or they allow the goods to enter the country without entrance fee due to several reasons?

If so, will the law of Allah keep on changing daily, weekly, or annually in accordance to the changes in policies of some government officials?

And it is also possible, that after the government adopted the free trade system, in the next several months the government decide to walk out from the free trade organization. Is it possible for the Islamic sharia to be so labile, deciding that one thing is lawful in the morning, but unlawful in the afternoon, and it will return to lawful state once again tomorrow?

If this question succeeded to open your mind about the method of determining a rule or verdict in sharia, then you should know brother, that the lawful or unlawful state of a kind of trading, generally influenced by four things:

  • The lawful state of the commodities. If the commodities or goods are unlawful, similarly , to trade is also unlawful. But if the commodities are lawful, trading such things is also lawful.
  • Existence of elements of usury
  • Existence of elements of unclarity (gharar)
  • Existence of requirements that could lead to usury and unclarity

These are the most important factors that could make a kind of trading become unlawful . (Bidayatul Mujtahid 2/102)

If a trading is proven to be free from the four factors above, there are no reasons to prohibit it.

However, as the citizen of a state law, doing something that violate the rules – although it is lawful in sharia- may bring some risk, dealing with the authorities. If that is the condition, we should not do something, for example trading, that could endanger ourselves, although it is lawful in our religion.

The case of a businessman, Pujiono, who marry a 12 years-old girl, is one of the example of this condition. In sharia, there are no indications that prohibit such practice, and even Prophet Muhammad himself once married to a 9 years old girl. But what made brother Pujiono have to deal with the court?

Hopefully, this brief answer can make you understand the problem better, and can broaden your view about the sharia laws of your religion.

And Allah knows best.

Author: Ustadz Dr. Muhammad Arifin Badri, M.A.
Article of www.syaria.com


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Keywords: black, marketing, in, islam, is, it, halal, to, sell, or, buy, smuggled, goods, ramdhan

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Salam,

What about buying a fake item like Croc shoes (actually we are not sure it is fake or not)

Thank for the answer.

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