We hereby would like to clarify some uncertainties in the wages being paid to the employees. We have around 135 employees and each of them have different variance in punching time out. This variance covers 15-20 minutes. The likely reasons for the variances are in turn punching of all staffs. All staffs can not punch at once so they have to wait for their turns. Some of them are in process of closing transactions for the last customers then punching out for home. Meanwhile, this extra 15-20 minutes are not accounted in the per minute worked wages. Our concern is that whether this process is acceptable as not to pay. Is it allowable under sharia?
Another scenario we would like to clarify is that if there is a mutual agreement between employers and employees for any extra work rounding off for another 15-30 minutes, it will not be accounted as staffs paid per minute wages. Will this be acceptable under sharia?
The estimated reasoned out circumstances covers around 15 staffs to maximum with total of $40-$50 maximum per week paid. This however varies.
Our internal clerical annoyance and involvement weighs more than per extra minute paid. These timing differences of different employees in turn builds up additional clerical work for the payroll and accounts section, taking out extra time, looking for reasons of staffs extra work, finding availability of seniors to approve the extra time and so on. The likely reasons for that appear to that either staff was with last customer, took time in closing workstations and getting ready for home or was waiting for his turn to punch out.
We would be very grateful if this can be made clear to us whether those put forward for clarification would be acceptable under sharia and if not then what would be the alternative option to take?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
According to the Shariah, the payment (salary) the employee is entitled to is in lieu of him submitting himself to his employer during the specified work hours. Hence, the employer is not entitled to hold back the employee after the specified work hours.
Yes, if the employee has to stay back for punching out etc. for such a short while that it is normal and accepted by everyone then there is nothing wrong. However, compelling the employees to stay back for more than this is not permissible.
It is not permissible for the employer to make it a condition in the contract of the employee that if there is extra work, he will have to work for an extra 30 minutes without getting any payment for it, regardless of whether the employee agrees to it or not.
The solution to your problem is that – apart from making the punching out procedure more efficient – in the contract, instead of stating that the work hours are from 8 am to 5 pm, for example, state that they are from 8 am to 5:30 pm; and tell the employees that they are permitted to punch out and leave at 5 pm once they finish their day's work. This way, if some employees have to stay till 5:30 to punch out or to round off their work, it will be fine, as it will be company's time till 5:30.
And Allah knows best.
Mufti Faizal Riza
Darul Ifta Australia
Checked and approved by:
Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa Mahmudiya, South Africa
أجير وحد (وهو
من يعمل لواحد
في المدة وإن
لم يعمل كمن
بأجر مسمى إلخ. وفي
أو أكثر. قال
أو ثلاثة رجلا
لرعي غنم لهما
أو لهم خاصة
كان أجيرا خاصا
كما في المحيط
وغيره إلخ (
رد المحتار: 9 / 117
، دار المعرفة
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