Praise be to Allaah.
The fuqaha’ are unanimously agreed that forgetting is an
excuse which means that there is no sin or accountability in all matters,
because of a great deal of evidence in the Qur’aan and Sunnah, but they
differed as to whether the fidyah is still required in cases of
With regard to the issue of forgetting to make up missed
Ramadaan fasts before the next Ramadaan comes, the scholars are also
unanimously agreed that they must still be made up after the second
Ramadaan, and they are not waived as a result of forgetting.
But they differed as to whether the fidyah (which is feeding
a poor person) is required when making up the missed fast (after the second
Ramadaan has come and gone). There are two points of view:
1 – That the fidyah is not required, because forgetting is an
excuse that means there is no sin and the fidyah is waived.
This was the view of most of the Shaafa’is and some of the
See: Tuhfat al-Muhtaaj by Ibn Hajar al-Haytami
(3/445); Nihaayat al-Muhtaaj (3/196); Minah al-Jaleel (2/154);
Sharh Mukhtasar Khaleel (2/263).
2 – That the fidyah is required, and forgetting is an excuse
that means there is no sin only.
This was the view of al-Khateeb al-Sharbeeni among the
Shaafa’is, who said in Mughni al-Muhtaaj (2/176):
It seems that it means there is no sin only, and that the
fidyah is not waived.
This was also stated by some of the Maalikis.
See: Mawaahib al-Jaleel Sharh Mukhtasar Khaleel
The more correct view is the former, in sha Allaah, for three
1 – The general meaning of the verses and ahaadeeth which say
that people are not held accountable for forgetting, such as the verse in
which Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Our Lord! Punish us not if we forget or fall into error”
2 – The basic principle that one is not subject to any
expiation or fidyah except with evidence, and there is no reliable evidence
in this case.
3 – There is a difference of opinion as to whether this
fidyah is required in the first place, even in the case of one who delays
making up the fasts deliberately. The Hanafis and Zaahiris are of the view
that it is not obligatory and Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen was of the view that it
is only mustahabb, because there is no report to suggest that it is
prescribed except from the actions of some of the Sahaabah, which is not
strong enough to suggest that people be obliged to follow it, let alone
oblige them to do it in a case where Allaah has granted an excuse.
See the answer to question no.
To sum up, he only has to make up the missed fasts, and he
does not have to feed the poor, so he should make them up after Ramadaan.
And Allaah knows best.