Business Fatwa QA

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Q: Online Auctions and Purchase without actually seeing the item

I was interested to know if participating in Auctions such- either in the actual physical ones or via the Internet like through EBAY is allowed in Islam ?
Also, is buying things online (which you cannot feel and confirm to be in good condition allowed? I heard it is Sunnah to make sure what you are buying is of good value and condition. What if we can get an assured warranty on the online product?)

Answer:

It is permissible to buy and sell items in an auction, whether it is physical or online, as long as the principles laid down by Shariah are upheld. The concept of auctioning items is established from the practise of Rasulullah (صلى الله عليه وسلم).

عن أنس بن مالك أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم باع حلسا وقدحا وقال من يشتري هذا الحلس والقدح فقال رجل أخذتهما بدرهم فقال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم من يزيد على درهم من يزيد على درهم فأعطاه رجل درهمين فباعهما منه سنن الترمذى ج1 ص231,سعيد

Generally, items that are being auctioned or sold are sufficiently described and specified. In most cases, an image of the commodity is also displayed which may give the purchaser sufficient clarity on what he is purchasing. This is as good as seeing the item. As such, the purchaser’s right of Khyaar-ur-Ru’yah falls of.

كذلك الذي يشتري مالا بدون أن يراه له حق خيار الرؤية فهو إذا باعه من آخر أو وهبه أو آجره قبل أن يراه أو بعد أن رآه يسقط حق خياره بمقتضى المادة فعلى هذا لو أراد بعد ذلك رد المبيع بحق خيار الرؤية فليس له رده كذا الصالح الذي يجري بين الطرفين لأنه يتضمن إسقاط بعض الحقوق فليس للطرفين حق الفسخ فيه درر الحكام شرح مجلة الأحكام - ج 1 / ص 49

And Allāh Ta῾āla Knows Best

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

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