Zaket literally means purification. It is a required donation a muslim has to make once a year to "purify" his wealth, i.e. use part of it for the good and benefit of others.
To fulfill the obligation of Zaket, a Muslim must compute the difference between his/her capital for that year and the year before. If the difference exceeds a minimum amount known as Nisaab [currently estimated at $1000.00 in the US], then he/she must donate 1/40 th of this difference amount as Zaket.
Author: Taoufik Nadji
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