Q) Is it valid to give money or clothing to the family of the deceased, and can that takes the place of food of which the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) spoke when he said: “ Make food for the family of Ja’far”?
A) Praise be to Allaah.
Giving clothing or money to the family of the deceased does not take the place of making food for them, because the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) said at the end of the hadeeth: “… for there has befallen them that which is distracting them.” This clearly shows that he only told people to make food for the family of the deceased because they have been distracted by their calamity from making food for themselves. But doing acts of kindness by giving clothing or money to those who need it among the family of the deceased is good in and of itself, and this encouraged by Islam in general terms when there is a need for that for the family of the deceased or anyone else. The one who does that to relieve distress or hardship has done good.
And Allaah is the source of strength and may Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and Companions.
Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah li’l-Ifta’ (9/94).