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I used to do service until last year. Since last year, I amjobless and actively looking for a job. I had some investments and am currently running my family with the profit from the investments. Unfortunately, the whole profit amount is being spent to maintain my family.

Now, is it obligatory for me to give Zakat from the profit of the investments? If I spend some additional amount, then I have to spend it from the original investment and as a result I shall receive lesser profit and shall face hardship to maintain my family. It is mentionable that I have paid Zakat every year. It is also mentionable that my wife owns gold jewelery which had been gifted by me and her family.

Please advise as to whether or not Zakat is obligatory on me.

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Zakat becomes obligatory to a person only when his/her income reaches the Nisab amount (threshold), and that the money has been under the owner's possession for a whole lunar year.

The amount of zakat you need to pay depends on how much your profit amount is. The minimum amount of profit for which zakat becomes obligatory is the price of 85 grams of Gold or 595 grams of Silver, whichever is lesser. The price of gold and silver depends on where you live, so I cannot give you an exact quote here.

As for your wife's gold, you have to pay zakat on it if the amount of gold is over 85 grams. If you do not have the money to pay zakat on gold, you have to ask for your relatives/friends help, or you have to sell a part of the gold to pay the zakat. This is very important because Allah declared very severe punishment for not paying zakat. See this answer to get details about the punishment.

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You are asking 2 questions.

is it obligatory for me to give Zakat from the profit of the investments?

If the investment is in your bank account, then the majority of scholars say that you need to pay Zakat on it. If, however, the investment is not in your hands (say 401k, ROTH IRA, etc..) then you don't have to pay Zakat until you actually get the money and the money stays with you for a year. More on this answer can be found on question like this:

Zakat on State Pension Account value

However, in my opinion, if you think that you have a large sum of money (for example $20,000) and you are afraid paying Zakah on it will deplete the money faster when you don't have a job, you can do the following:

  • Set a separate account and pay the Zakah to that account.
  • Once the account is depleted, you can use that Zakah money on yourself and family. If by that time you already have another job you can easily send that money to Zakah organization.

This opinion comes from the same reasoning many scholars say you are allowed to pay Zakah in advance for 1/2 years. I look at it the same way from the other side. In the future once you have a job, you should also consider paying Zakah in advance to avoid issues like this.

It is also mentionable that my wife owns gold jewelery which had been gifted by me and her family

Your second question about the Gold, it is disputed, some scholars say you need to pay Zakah on the entire Gold, some others would say only that your wife doesn't wear. Similar question can be found here:

Is a woman's jewellery subject to zakat?

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