Question: I suffered from a serious disease in the last ten days of Ramadan, I broke the Sawm (Fast) for four days in this blessed month because of my sickness. I hoped that I could make up for these days when I restore my health, but I am still ill up to now and the coming Ramadan is about to start. I am unable to make up for these days and to fast the next Ramadan. Additionally, I am not sure that I will restore my health later. Would you please tell in writing what I should do and the cash value of feeding at present? If there are a few poor persons in our village, shall I repeat paying this value to these poor people?
Answer: If the case is as you have mentioned, you have to be patient until Allah cures you of your illness.
You then can make up for the days you missed in the months of Ramadan. The basic rule in this respect is the Saying of Allah (Exalted be He): And whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number [of days which one did not observe Sawm (Fast) must be made up] from other days. Your uncertainty of recovery cannot be a basis for deciding that your healing is hopeless or set you free from liability for making up and permit you to the act of feeding the poor for the missed fasts. Rather, you should think good of Allah and hope for recovery while getting ready for the Hereafter. May Allah cure you of every disease and help you perform the obligations. When the doctors decide that your sickness which render you unable to fast is incurable, then you should feed one poor person for every day (past or coming) missed of Ramadan half a Sa‘ (1 Sa‘ = 2.172 kg) of the local staple food, dates or something else. If you give a poor person dinner or lunch for the number of days that you did not fast, that will be sufficient. As to paying in cash, it does not discharge the obligation.
May Allah grant us success! May peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions!