Rules of Property Found
2707. Any lost property other than an animal, which does not bear any sign by means of which it may be possible to locate its owner, irrespective of whether its value is less than a Dirham (12.6 chickpeas of coined silver) should be given away as Sadaqah on behalf of the owner, as an obligatory precaution.
2708. If a person finds a property whose value is less than a Dirham, and if its owner is known, and the person who finds it does not know whether or not the owner would be happy about it, he cannot pick it up without his (i.e. the owner’s) permission. And if its owner is not known, the person who finds should, as an obligatory precaution, give it away as Sadaqah on behalf of the owner, whoever he may be. And when the owner is found, the replacement should be given to him if he does not approve the Sadaqah given on his behalf, and the obligatory precaution is that what is articles left in Haram of Mecca should not be taken.
2709. If a person finds something which bears a sign by means of
which its owner can be located, and even if he comes to know that its
owner is a non-Muslim whose property must be protected, and if the value
of that thing reaches one Dirham, he should make an announcement about it
at the place of gathering of the people for one year from the day on which
he finds that thing.
2710. If a person does not wish to make an announcement himself, he can ask another reliable person to make the announcement, on his behalf.
2711. If the person who finds such a thing makes announcement for one year, but the owner of the property does not turn up he should act as follows: he can retain it on behalf of the owner, so that he may give it to him when he appears, or give as Sadaqah to the poor on behalf of the owner. But, obligatory precaution is that he should give it away as Sadaqah.
2712. If the person makes announcement for one year and the owner of the property does not turn up, and he continues to care for it on behalf of its owner, and in the meantime it is lost, he will not be responsible for the loss if he has not been negligent nor over cautions about it. And if he gave it as Sadaqah on behalf of the owner, or taken it for himself, he is responsible. But, if the owner approves the Sadaqah, he is not responsible.
2713. If a person finds a property, and purposely does not make an announcement according to the rules mentioned above, he commits a sin, and at the same time remains Wajib on him to make an announcement
2714. If an insane person or a child who is not Baligh finds something, his guardian must make an announcement. And if the owner is not found even after having announced for a year, he should act as rule mentioned, but if it is to the interest of a minor, he may own it.
2715. If during the year in which a person has been making announcement about something having been lost and found, he loses all hope of finding the owner, he should give it away as Sadaqah, as an obligatory precaution.
2716. If the property is lost during the year in which he has been making an announcement, and he has been negligent in caring for it, or has been over cautious, he will be responsible to the owner for replacement, and should also continue announcing. But, if he has not been negligent nor over cautious, it is not obligatory for him to pay anything.
2717. If the property, which bears a mark and has value equal to one Dirham, is found at a place where it is known that the owner of the property will not be found by means of announcement, he should give it to the poor persons as Sadaqah on behalf of the owner on the very first day, and he should not wait till the year ends. And if the owner is found and does not approve Sadaqah, he should give its compensation and the Thawab belongs to him
2718. If a person finds a thing and possesses it under the impression that it is his own property, but learns later that it is not his property, he should announce one year. The same applies, as an obligatory precaution, if he has moved it with is foot.
2719. The announcement for the lost article should be made in such a way that it can be said that he has defined it. For example, he must say: “I found a book or dress” and if he says: “I have found something”, it is not sufficient.
2720. If a person finds something and another person claims that it is his, and also mentions certain marks of identification, the former should give that thing to him only if he is satisfied that it belongs to him.
2721. If the value of a thing which a person finds is equal to one Dirham, and he does not make an announcement about it, but leaves it in the mosque or at places of general assembly, and the thing is lost or somebody picks it up, the person who found the thing will be responsible.
2722. If a person finds something, which its value is less than one Dirham (12.6 Nokhod of coined silver) and he does not do any action and leaves it in Masjid or some other places, then if one takes it, it is Halal for him
2723. If a person finds a thing which is perishable, he should keep it for as long as it does not perish, and as an obligatory precaution, announce about it, and if he does not find the owner, as a precaution, he should fix its value with the permission of the Mujtahid or his Wakil and sell it, keeping the money with him. In the meantime, he should continue with the announcement till one year, and if the owner is not found, he will give it as Sadaqah on his behalf.
2724. If the thing found by somebody is with him at the time of performing Wudhu and offering prayers, and if he has no intention of returning it to its owner if he is found, his Wudhu and prayers do not become void; otherwise, it is not in order.
2725. If a pair of shoes of a person is taken away and is replaced
by another pair of shoes, and he knows that the pair of shoes which is now
with him belongs to a certain person who would not mind if he took his
shoes instead of his own, he can take them. Similar rule applies if he
knows that he has been unjustly robbed of his shoes; but in this
particular case, the value of shoes left behind must not exceed the value
of his own shoes; otherwise, the difference of the price will be paid to
the owner when he is found and if not, he may give it as Sadaqah.
2726. Clothes which are taken to tailor for stitching and gold items taken to goldsmith for repair, books taken to bindery for binding or selling to him or book seller, and other items which are taken to repairmen for repair and improvement, if their owner is unknown and they do not appear to collect their property, then after investigation, if it does not lead to any conclusion, as an obligatory precaution, must be given as Sadaqah on behalf of its owner.