Q. Is it permissible to appoint a non-Muslim or a non Muslim bank as an executor of an estate?
A. A Muslim testator (a Muslim making a will) should nominate an upright righteous Muslim as an executor of his estate to ensure the correct distribution of his estate according to the Islamic Law of Succession and Inheritance. By appointing a non-Muslim or a non-Muslim bank as an executor of one’s estate, this purpose might not be achieved. Therefore, if one had nominated a non-Muslim or a non-Muslim bank as an executor of his estate, an upright righteous Muslim executor or institution should be nominated instead.
Note: The nomination of a non-Muslim executor or bank will not invalidate the Last Will and Testament of a Muslim. (Tabyeenul-Haqaaiq 6/207) At the same time, it is not guaranteed the estate will be distributed in full conformity with the Islamic Law of Succession and Inheritance even though a person had made an Islamic Will. Therefore, the necessary steps should be taken in nominating an executor of an estate according to Shari’ requirements as stated above.
Allah Ta’ala Knows Best
Mufti Ismaeel Bassa