Narrated Ma’n bin Yazid:
My grandfather, my father and I gave the pledge of allegiance to Allah’s Apostle. The Prophet got me engaged and then got me married. One day I went to the Prophet with a complaint. My father Yazid had taken some gold coins for charity and kept them with a man in the mosque (to give them to the poor) But I went and took them and brought them to him (my father). My father said, “By Allah! I did not intend to give them to you. ” I took (the case) to Allah’s Apostle . On that Allah’s Apostle said, “O Yazid! You will be rewarded for what you intended. O Man! Whatever you have taken is yours.”
Al-Haafiz said in al-Fath:
It is as if he did not think that it was acceptable to give charity to his son, or that it was better to give charity to strangers, but the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) explained to him that he would have what he intended, because his intention was to give charity to one who was in need, and his son needed it, so it went to the right place, even if it had never crossed his mind that he would take it. And he explained to his son that he had the right to keep what he had taken, because he had taken it in a lawful manner and he needed it. End quote (2/292).
1. This Hadith leads us to the conclusion that if Sadaqah (charity), goes to a needy son of a Muslim, there is no need to take it back from him for the reason that the father had intended to give it to a deserving person. The former gets the reward for it on account of his Niyyah (intention). This however, will be reckoned as Nafli Sadaqah (voluntary charity) because the obligatory Zakat (Sadaqah) cannot be given to the donor’s own dependents.
2. It is permissible in Shari`ah to make someone a Wakil (attorney or agent) for Sadaqah.
3. It does not amount to disobedience on the part of a son to take his father to a competent authority or scholar to know the legal position on any issue, in the same way, as mutual discussion and debate on matters of Shari`ah does not amount to insolence.
(Fath Al-Bari, chapter on Zakat).
Fiqh of the Hadith:
- The hadith contains the permissibility of proclaiming the heavenly (Lordly) gifts and mentioning the favors of Allaah.
- The permissibility of appointing someone else to distribute charity, especially the optional charity, because this contains an aspect of concealing one’s identity.
- It is permissible to act upon general statements taking them as general, It is permissible for the father and son to seek judgement [concerning a mutual dispute] and that this, in and of itself, is not to be considered disrespect and disobedience [on the part of the son].
- The one who is giving charity has the reward of what he intended even if the charity reaches those who do not deserve it.
- The father does not have the right to take back charity that he has given to his son, but this is not the case with a gift.
And you can read about spending (charity) on the family here.