What means form over substance?

Gassner's picture

Form over substance is an expression in jurisprudence, when the legal form is considered fully valid but the substance is totally different. In the context of Islamic finance certain techniques exist to find a way around a prohibition, which can be acceptable (a different case avoiding the prohibited) or unacceptable (a pure circumvention with bad intention). The discussion regarding such techniques remains a day to day topic, as many financial techniques used nowadays are from an Islamic perspective on the borderline betweeen the disliked and the prohibited and the opinions differ on which side they belong (e.g. Tawarruq, Waad mechanism).

see also: http://www.islamicfinance.de/?q=node/1461