Hajj Ritual

The Rules for Pilgrimage by Proxy

#103: Qualifications of the representative:

First: Adulthood

Any obligatory pilgrimage performed by a minor acting as proxy is not valid, even though the minor may be mumeyyiz.

This applies as a matter of precaution (´ala-l-ahwaṯ). However, it seems apparent that a voluntary pilgrimage, being performed on behalf of another person by an underage representative who has the consent of their guardian, is deemed valid.

Second: Sanity

A pilgrimage performed by a representative who is mentally ill is not valid if the mind-affecting disease occurs even for a short moment during the pilgrimage, regardless of whether the disease usually occurs intermittently or is permanently present.

There are no objections to appointing a person who is safīh as representative.

Third: Set of Beliefs

As a precautionary measure, a person who does not belong to the Twelver Shi'ism cannot be a representative, even if they were willing to perform the pilgrimage according to the rules of our school of thought.

Fourth: The Freedom of the Representative

In the year for which the representative is appointed to perform a pilgrimage they must not be themselves subject to the obligation of an obligatory pilgrimage. However, if they are unaware of this fact or had forgotten about it, the assignment is effective even so.

This state of freedom is a condition for the validity of the appointment and not for the validity of the performed Hajj.

Therefore, if the representative performs the pilgrimage in spite of being themselves obliged to perform the pilgrimage, the principal is released from the obligation.

If the pilgrimage is made under these conditions, it is deemed valid, but the representative is not entitled to receive the agreed-upon remuneration but another reasonable amount.

#104: It is not necessary that the representative be a righteous person (´ādil), but they have to be trustworthy in regard to performing the pilgrimage on the principal's behalf. If one had no confidence in them, it would not be certain whether or not the pilgrimage had really been made.

#105: The principal's obligation will be deemed to have been fulfilled once the representative has successfully completed the pilgrimage. The representative has to be familiar with the procedure of pilgrimage and its rules or they must follow a guide through the performance of all ceremonies. If there is any doubt about the accuracy of the performance, the doubt may be ignored and the pilgrimage is deemed valid.

#106: There no objection to appointing a representative for the pilgrimage of a minor who is mumeyyiz or for an insane person. Indeed, it is an obligation to assign a representative for an insane person as soon as, during a period of sanity, the pilgrimage has become an obligation for them, even if they relapse into their illness or die thereafter.

#107: It is not required that the representative be of the same sex as the principal.

It is valid if a man performs a pilgrimage by proxy for a woman and vice versa.

#108: There is no objection to appointing a representative who has never performed the pilgrimage before, whether or not the principal has already undertaken a pilgrimage. The gender of the representative is irrelevant. However, there are some scholars who do advise against assigning a representative who has never been on pilgrimage before, although there is no evidence to support this. Actually, if the principal has not yet performed Hağğatu-l-Islām, it is preferable to choose a representative who has also not been on pilgrimage before. The same applies, if the principal has already died.

#109: The principal is required to be a Muslim, and the appointment of a representative for a person who is a kafir is void. If a person who is a kafir dies and leaves property behind, which is inherited by a Muslim, it is not their obligation to assign a representative to perform the pilgrimage on behalf of the deceased.

As for a person who is nāsibi (someone, who is openly hostile to Ahlul-bayt), it is not permitted to represent them at the pilgrimage, except for a son representing his father. Regarding other relatives who are nāsibi, it is problematic (ishkāl), but it is possible to donate the reward (thawāb) of one's own Hajj to another person.

#110: There is no objection to appointing a representative to perform an optional pilgrimage for a living person, whether or not for payment. The same rule applies for the performance of an obligatory pilgrimage, but only for someone who is not capable of undertaking it themselves.

The assignment of a representative for a deceased person is always valid, whether for payment or not and whether the pilgrimage is an obligatory or an optional one.

#111: For a pilgrimage to be valid the intention of the representative must be set in the name of the person whom they are representing. In order to do so, the principal has to be an identifiable individual who is known to the representative. However, it is not necessary to utter the principal's name, but it is recommended that they keep them in mind during all situations.

#112: Just as the assignment to perform a pilgrimage is valid regardless of whether it be for payment or not, it is also valid in case of a generally delineated assignment (Ǧa´āla), without appointing a particular person, or when the assignment is a term of a contract.

#113: Of course, in terms of the rules of Hajj, the representative has to act as if it were their own pilgrimage. It is not permissible to assign someone, who is known to be unable to perform some ceremonies, even though they would do it free of charge.

However, there is no objection in choosing a representative who is known to move in the shadow and who will omit ceremonies which would not render the Hajj invalid, even if this were to be done on purpose, e.g. leaving out the ṯawāf-un-nisā or not staying in Mina in the evening of the 11th and 12th day.

#114: If the representative dies before entering the state of ihrām, the principal's pilgrimage is not valid and another representative has to be assigned to perform the pilgrimage. If they die after assuming the state of consecration and entering the area of Haram and if the pilgrimage was done for payment, the pilgrimage is valid (´ala-l-ahwaṯ). There is no difference in this regard between Hağğatu-l-Islām or another obligatory pilgrimage. However, if the representative agreed to perform the pilgrimage without payment, it is ambiguous whether or not it is valid. (ishkāl).

#115: If the representative dies after assuming the state of consecration and after entering the area of Haram, they are entitled to receive the full payment if they were appointed to release the principal from their obligation.

However, if the representative previously determined a specific price for each ritual, they receive financial rewards for those rituals that they actually performed. If they die before entering the state of ihrām, they are not entitled to receive any payment, unless the preparations for the journey were part of the actions that were cited in the contract. Then they may receive a proportional payment.

#116: If the representative was assigned to start the pilgrimage journey in the land of the principal but without any further specification of the route, they are free to choose any route they like. But if the route was specified, they are not allowed to deviate from that. If the representative has already completed the pilgrimage and the routing was part of the contract but was disregarded by the representative, the principal is can deem the contract void. In this case, the representative receives a reasonable compensation.

#117: If a person agrees to perform the obligatory pilgrimage personally on behalf of another person in a particular year and then enters into an agreement with another person to also personally undertake their obligatory pilgrimage in that same year, the second agreement is void. Both of the arrangements would be valid if they were made so as to take place in different years or if for at least one of the pilgrimages the agreement did not stipulate that it was to be personally performed by the representative.

#118: If a person agrees to perform a pilgrimage by proxy in a particular year, they are not allowed to undertake it in an earlier or later year without the consent of the principal. If the representative performs the pilgrimage at a time other than the one arranged, the principal is allowed to cancel the agreement and – depending on the contract – the representative receives an adequate remuneration. However, in this case, the person on whose behalf the pilgrimage was performed is released from their obligation.

#119: If a representative is prevented from performing the ceremonies or if they are unable to do so, the same rules apply for them as for someone making their own Hajj. These rules are explained below.

#120: If the representative commits an act for which an expiation (kaffārah) is due, they have to meet these costs from their own funds, whether or not the pilgrimage was done for payment.

#121: If the remuneration for the pilgrimage is a fixed sum which proves to be insufficient to cover the expenses, the principal is not obligated to bear the shortfall. Likewise, they are not allowed to reclaim an overpayment.

#122: If a person has been appointed to represent another person for an obligatory or optional Hajj but makes it void by having sexual intercourse before reaching Mash'ar, it is their obligation to complete the pilgrimage and it is valid for the principal. But the representative must perform an obligatory pilgrimage the following year and make an expiation (kaffārah). In this case, it is obvious (adh'dhāhir) that they are entitled to receive their remuneration. If they do not perform the pilgrimage the following year, with or without good reason, their obligation to make one Hajj on their own account remains.

#123: It is obvious that the representative is entitled to insist upon getting paid in advance, even if this was not made explicit in the initial agreement.

#124: If there is an agreement that someone will personally perform a pilgrimage as a proxy, they are not allowed to delegate the task to another person without the consent of the principal. If they simply agreed to arrange the pilgrimage (not to personally perform it), they may engage someone else to do so.

#125: If a person is appointed to perform Hağğu-t-Tamattu´ (first the ´Umrah and then the Hajj) and the time had seemed to be sufficient but then suddenly they run out of time so they have to alter Hağğu-t-Tamattu´ into Hağğu-l-Ifrād and after completing it they perform the ´Umrat-ul-Mufradah (that is the Hajj is performed first and then the ´Umrah), the principal is released from the obligation to perform the obligatory pilgrimage.

The representative is not entitled to receive the agreed-upon remuneration if the arrangement included performing the ceremonies for Hağğu-t-Tamattu´. On the other hand, they are eligible for their payment if the agreement was to absolve the principal from their obligatory Hajj.

#126: If the pilgrimage is an optional one, there is no objection to the representative performing one pilgrimage on behalf of a number of people. In case of an obligatory pilgrimage, the representative is restricted to performing it on behalf of only one person.

There is an exception for one type of obligatory pilgrimage, which has e.g. become a collective obligation on two people due to a solemn promise, which is fulfilled by jointly appointing a third person to perform the pilgrimage for payment on behalf of both of them.

#127: If it is an optional pilgrimage, there is no objection to a number of representatives performing pilgrimages (for or without payment) in the same year and on behalf of the same person, whether living or dead. The same rule applies if the person who is being represented has to fulfill several obligatory pilgrimages. For example, it is possible that a person, deceased or not, is obliged to perform two pilgrimages due to two vows, or one might be Hağğatu-l-Islām and the other might have became an obligation as a result of a vow. Under these conditions, it is permitted to assign two representatives, each one performing one obligatory pilgrimage.

It is also possible to appoint two representatives if one performs an obligatory pilgrimage and the other an optional one. It seems likely that even the assignment of two representatives for the same obligatory pilgrimage is permitted as a precautionary measure if it is to be feared that it could be performed poorly.

#128: Ṯawāf is a recommended ´ibādah (act of worship). Performing the ṯawāf on behalf of another person is permitted. This person may or may not be deceased, may be alive but not in Mecca or be in Mecca but not capable of doing it for themselves.

#129: On completion of their task, there is no objection to a representative performing the ´Umratu-l-Mufradah (which is the ´Umrah after a pilgrimage) for themselves or on behalf of another person. Similarly, they are allowed to perform the ṯawāf on their own or on someone else's behalf.