This is a contract between: (i) the owner of the item – the depositor – and (ii) the trustee, who is entrusted to keep the entrusted item – the deposit – safe. This is formed in any form which indicates it, whether by word or conduct. It is necessary for both parties to have discretion over their affairs and free choice in the matter. .
Ruling 486: It is not permissible to treat the deposit in a way that would expose it to danger or harm.
Ruling 487: If no specific manner of protection is stipulated, it is obligatory on the trustee to protect the deposit in a usual manner, such that it is not regarded as negligence. If the depositor specifies a particular manner of protecting the deposit, the trustee must act upon it.
Ruling 488: It is obligatory on the trustee to undertake the upkeep and maintenance of the deposit, such as the provision of food and drink, the allowing of the circulation of air, or exposing it to the sun, etc. If he fails to do so, he will be regarded as being negligent. All this is applicable if there are no terms in the contract to the contrary.
Ruling 489: The trustee, like in all cases of trusteeship, is not liable for any loss unless he transgressed or acted negligently, or it was mutually contractually agreed that he will be liable even without transgression or negligence.
Ruling 490: The contract is not binding, so either party may exit it at any time, except if there is a condition that requires continuity, in which case it will be necessary to adhere to it.
Ruling 491: It is prohibited to act with transgression and negligence in respect to the entrusted item, whether its depositor is a believer or a non-believer, and whether he is a Muslim or a non-Muslim.
Ruling 492: It is obligatory on the trustee to return the deposit to its owner or his agent whenever he requests it, and whenever it is exposed to danger.
Ruling 493: If the depositor – the owner of the entrusted item – dies, the deposit must be returned to his heir. If the trustee does not know his heir and is despondent about discovering him, he should give the deposit away as sadaqah on the depositor’s behalf. However, if the heir subsequently appears and is not satisfied with it being given as sadaqah, the trustee will compensate for it; the divine reward of the sadaqah will then be for the trustee.