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Online Quran Academy - Islamic Mentors

How to Make up for Qada (Missed) Prayers


The Importance of the Prayer

To understand why missing Salah (Obligatory prayers) is considered a major sin, we must first understand the significance of Salah. One of the major sins in Islam is missing Salah without a valid sharia reason. Salah is the second pillar of Islam after the Shahadah, and it is the way we communicate and connect with Allah (SWT), the Most Merciful and the Most Forgiving. Allah Almighty granted our Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) the gift of the five daily prayers as a mercy. Therefore, they are a blessing for the Muslims and a means of purification and protection from evil. 

On the Day of Judgment, our first account will be about our prayers, so we should never miss our Salah. We should always strive to pray on time and not delay or miss any. However, if we do miss a prayer unintentionally or due to circumstances beyond our control, we should make up for it as soon as possible. This is called qada prayer or qada namaz, and it is an obligation for every Muslim who misses a prayer.

Punishments for Neglecting the Prayer

One of the severe matters in Islam is neglecting or intentionally missing prayers. The Quran and Hadith do not specify the exact punishment for neglecting prayers but mention warnings and consequences. For example, Surah Maryam (19:59) says:

the punishment for missing a prayer as mentioned in holy Quran
But they were succeeded by generations who neglected prayer and followed their lusts and so will soon face the evil consequences. (Surah Maryam verse 59)

This verse warns about people who have completely ignored or become careless about praying. They have lost their connection with Allah (SWT) and followed their desires. The result of this neglect is punishment in Jahannam (Hell). This shows how important it is to stay connected with Allah (SWT) through regular prayer.

If you want to learn more about the Concept of Jahannam in Islam, you can read our blog.

Consequences of Neglecting Prayer

Neglecting prayer has many negative consequences, such as:

  • Weakening of faith.
  • Loss of spiritual connection with Allah (SWT).
  • Increased liability for sinful behavior.
  • Straying from the path of righteousness.
  • Decreased protection from negative influences.

We should try our best to avoid missing prayers. If we miss a prayer, we should perform the qada prayer or qada namaz as soon as possible. Qada prayer or qada namaz is a way of making up for the missed prayers by offering them later. You don’t want to find out on the day of judgment that you were wrong because, by then, it will be too late.

The Concept of Qada Prayers in Islam

Qada prayer, also known as make-up prayer or missed prayer, is the practice of performing obligatory prayers that we have delayed for some reason. Qada prayer is based on the principle that regular salah is a duty that we must fulfill and that missing a prayer is a grave sin. Therefore, we should make up for the missed prayers immediately.

Offering a Qada prayer is not a substitute for the regular prayer but rather a way of compensating for the missed obligation. Qada prayer should be performed with the same conditions and rules as the obligatory prayers, such as purity (perform ghusl and Wudu), facing the qibla, and reciting the appropriate surahs. We should perform the Qada prayer in the same order as the regular prayer. Hence, starting from the earliest missed prayer to the latest one.

You can read our comprehensive guide to prayer in Islam for more information. 

Scenarios of Missing Prayers

Muslim men are required to pray at the mosque and in congregation, while women are advised to pray at home and in solitude. However, there may be situations where we cannot pray on time, such as illness, travel, forgetfulness, or ignorance. In such cases, we should perform qada prayer as soon as we remember or are able to do so.

Here are two scenarios in which this might occur: 

1. Unintentional missing of prayer: This happens when you forget or sleep, even though you are usually very keen to offer prayers on time. In such cases, you should make up the prayer as soon as you remember or wake up. 

2. Deliberate missing of prayer: This happens when you miss the prayer without an excuse. In this case, it means that you have committed a sin, and you should repent to Allah (SWT) and seek His forgiveness.

Shari’s Excuses for Delaying Salah:

As Muslims, we must perform salah five times a day. Salah is an obligation that we cannot neglect or skip intentionally. However, there are some situations where we are allowed to delay or miss the salah, as long as we make up for it later by performing a qada prayer. These situations are:

  • When we are in a state of war and facing the enemy, and we cannot identify the direction of the Qiblah.
  • Facing dangers such as floods, wild animals, or robbers on the way while we are traveling.
  • When we are midwives and have to attend to a pregnant woman or a child whose lives are at risk, and we cannot leave them to pray.
  • Performing an emergency operation as doctors, and they are unable to pause to pray.
  • When we are sleeping and do not hear the call to prayer or the alarm. And as a result, we wake up after the time of salah has passed.
  • When we forget to pray due to a valid reason, such as being busy with work or study, and we remember after the time of salah has passed.

Islam has excused us from the missed salah in these situations. But, we must perform a qada prayer as soon as possible. This is how we show our gratitude and obedience to Allah, who has given us many concessions and ease in our religion.

Shari’s Excuses for Missing Prayers:

Islam is a religion of ease and mercy that accommodates the difficulties of its followers. Therefore, in some situations, a person is exempted from performing the obligatory prayers (Salah) and does not have to make up for them later (Qada). These situations include:

1. Losing consciousness or sanity: A person who is unconscious or impulsive is not responsible for their actions and cannot pray. When they regain their consciousness or sanity, they should resume their prayers as usual. Yet, they do not have to perform any Qada namaz.

2. Menstruation and postnatal bleeding: Women who are experiencing menstrual cycles (hayd) or delivery bleeding (nifas) are not required to pray during that period. They should also refrain from touching the Quran or entering the mosque. After the cycle or bleeding ends, they should perform a ghusl (ritual bath) and resume their prayers without having to perform Qada prayers.

3. Severe illness or weakness: A person who is too sick or weak to even nod their head for gestures (Isharaa) is excused from praying. If this condition lasts for more than one day and night, they do not have to perform Qada. However, if they recover enough to move their head for gestures within one day and night, they have to perform Qada for the missed prayers.

How to Perform Qada Prayers

If we miss any of the five daily prayers due to a valid reason, such as sleep, forgetfulness, or illness, we should make them up as soon as possible in the same order as we missed them. We should also repent to Allah (SWT) and ask for His forgiveness for any negligence or delay. 

We don’t have to perform the optional (Sunnah or Nafl) prayers along with the obligatory (Fard) ones. However, it is recommended that we do good deeds and increase our worship to compensate for the missed prayers.

Read more about the Significance of Nawafil (Voluntary) Prayers for Muslims.

When should a Person Offer Qada Prayers?

There is no specific time limit for performing qada prayers, but Islam recommends we perform them as soon as possible once the reason for missing them is no longer valid. The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said: “He who forgets the prayer, or he slept (and it was omitted), its expiation is (only) that he should observe it when he remembers it.” [Sahih Muslim 684c]

Some points that we should consider when performing Qada prayers are:

  • We should perform the Qada prayers before the current prayer of the same time. For example, if we miss Fajr and remember it at Zuhr time, we should first pray Qada Fajr and then Zuhr.
  • We should perform the Qada prayers in the same order as we missed them, starting from the earliest one. For example, if we miss Fajr and Zuhr, we should first pray Qada Fajr and then Qada Zuhr.
  • Muslims should not delay the Qada prayers without a valid reason, as this may increase our sin and make it harder to repent. We should make up the missed prayers as soon as possible, preferably on the same day.
  • Islam tells us to perform the Qada prayers with the same conditions and requirements as the regular prayers, such as purity, facing the Qibla, reciting the Quran, etc.
  • We should perform the Qada prayers with sincerity and devotion, as they are a means of seeking Allah’s mercy and forgiveness.

You can learn more about the method of performing missed prayers from

If the Number of Missed Prayers is Unknown?

If we are not sure about the number of missed prayers that we have to make up for, we should estimate it according to what is most likely. For example, if we think we missed between 10 and 20 prayers, we should assume that we missed 20 and make them up accordingly. 

If we are not able to estimate it, we should seek advice from a scholar who can help us determine a reasonable number based on our situation. We should also sincerely repent and make dua to Allah (SWT) to accept our efforts and forgive our shortcomings.

Making Intention for Qada Prayers

The Intention (niyyah) for qada prayers is different from the regular prayers, as it involves acknowledging that one is performing the missed prayer to fulfill one’s obligation. However, the rest of the prayer is the same as the regular one, with the same steps and recitations. 

Missing Jummah Prayer

Jummah, or Friday, is a significant day for Muslims. It means congregation, and it involves performing a special prayer that replaces the regular Dhuhr prayer. This prayer is obligatory for every adult Muslim male who is not sick, travelling, or in danger.

However, if someone misses the Jummah prayer for a valid reason, they do not have to make it up later. They can pray the Dhuhr prayer as usual. There is no way to compensate for a missed Jummah prayer; it is considered a lost opportunity.

Read our blog about the Jummah Prayer in detail.

The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) warned against neglecting the Jummah prayer. He said: “Whoever misses three Jummah prayers out of negligence, Allah will seal his heart.(Sunan an-Nasa’i 1369)

Practical Tips to Avoid Missing Regular Prayers

Salah is a crucial aspect of our faith that not only fulfills our religious obligation but also strengthens our bond with Allah (SWT) and provides us with guidance and peace in our daily lives. To ensure that we don’t miss our regular prayers, we should adopt the following practices:

  1. Understand the significance and benefits of Salah and how it helps us attain Allah’s (SWT) pleasure and mercy.
  2. Organize our day around the prayer times and prioritize Salah over other worldly activities.
  3. Set alarms or reminders on our devices to alert us of prayer times and avoid distractions or procrastination when the time comes.
  4. Find a quiet and clean place to perform our prayers, and have a designated prayer area or mat that we can use regularly.
  5. Make dua to Allah (SWT) to help establish a consistent prayer routine and seek His guidance and assistance to remain steadfast and committed.

Hopefully, these few tips will help you find the determination and courage to continue your daily prayer. Doing so will bring you blessings and rewards in this world and the hereafter. InshaAllah!

In our other, read more about the Five Daily Prayers in Islam.

FAQs about Qada Prayers

How many rakats are there for missed prayers?

If you have missed any prayers (Qadha), you should only perform the obligatory (Fard) raka’hs (units) of each prayer. The number of Fard raka’hs for each prayer is:
Fajr: 2 Raka’hs
Dhuhr: 4 Raka’hs
Asr: 4 Raka’hs
Maghrib: 3 Raka’hs
Isha: 4 Raka’hs and 3 Raka’hs witr

Is missing prayer a major sin?

Missing prayer intentionally and without a valid excuse is a major sin in Islam. Allah commands the believers to establish prayer and warns them of the consequences of neglecting it.

Do sunnah raka’ts make up for missed prayers?

No, performing Sunnah raka’ts does not make up for missed prayers. Sunnah raka’ts are optional and voluntary, while Fard raka’ts are obligatory and mandatory. When you perform Qada namaz, you are only required to pray the Fard raka’hs that you have missed.

What should you do if you miss a prayer?

If you miss a prayer due to forgetfulness, sleep, or any other valid reason, you should perform it as soon as you remember it or as soon as you can.

Can I pray for missed prayers the next day?

Yes, you can pray for missed prayers the next day, but it is better to pray as soon as possible. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever forgets a prayer or sleeps through its time, let him pray it as soon as he remembers it.(Bukhari and Muslim)

What is the punishment for missing a prayer?

There is no specific punishment mentioned in the Quran or the Sunnah for missing a prayer, but it is a serious matter that can affect your faith and your relationship with Allah. Allah says in the Quran: “And woe to those who pray, those who are heedless of their prayer.(107:4-5) The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said: “The covenant between us and them is prayer, so if anyone abandons it, he has become a disbeliever.(Ahmad and Tirmidhi)






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4 months ago

MashAllah ❤️


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