Tuesday | 23 July 2019 | 20 Dhul-Qidah 1440

Fatwa Answer

Question ID: 477 Category: Business Dealings
Working for Banks

Asaalamualaikum,

Alhamdulillah! I am in the process of possibly thinking of stepping down from my position at work for the sake of Allah. I was suggested to first clarify that my position is haram, before I take that step. Inshallah, you can help me understand if it is necessary for me to step down or not. I work in the bank. It is not an Islamic bank. My position is titled as, "Customer Sales and Service Representative". My position requires me to do the following: 

  • Open accounts, including accounts that earn interest. If someone does not have an account, I have to persuade them to open an account. When doing this, if they want a checking account, I must persuade them to want a savings. In many cases it's easy because it avoids them to receive a monthly service fee. 
  • Open many credit products, such as credit cards, loans, line of credit (form of a loan), various insurance products. 
  • I am required to persuade clients to have as many products, even if they don't want or need them. My job is to find a reason why they might want it. The reason is because it is 50% sales, but feels like 100%.
  • Also I work in connection with the tellers (what I was previous and also what I'm thinking of doing again). The teller are also required to referral certain number of customers to the bankers (me) to open accounts and credit products. In order for the teller to refer to me and not others, the bankers make deals. Such as if you refer a customer to me, if I get a customer that walks in, I will give that to you as a free one. So it becomes very morally wrong..
  • I also help many clients with customer service issues, complaints, etc. I can or cannot help some and visa versa. It is hard for me as an individual to say no, but there are cases I have to because of polices and procedures of the bank. I meet with many different people. Some people come in not purified, some have a strong scent of alcohol from drinking, some with blood on identification cards, etc. 
  • The one thing that I am also required to do that I would say is correct under Islam is being happy all the time, smile, welcome customers in the bank, be knowledgeable, understanding, caring, etc. 

Inshalhah, please suggest what I should do. Is my position halal or haram? Thank you in advance to help me with my efforts to please Allah. 

الجواب وباللہ التوفیق

Islam prohibits any type of dealings with interest; either taking or giving.  Based on the description of your job, responsibilities given on page 1, you do deal in distributing interest.  This is prohibited in any case.  Secondly, your salary given to you based on the income of the bank which is derived completely from interest based transactions.  Thus, based on the above two reasons it is better if you look for another employment, in other Halal companies (outside of the banking, insurance, gambling, alcohol industries etc.)

As soon as you do find an alternative source of employment (even if your salary is not comparable) you should quit this job and take the other one.

واللہ اعلم بالصواب