It is an independent administrative system in the Islamic government. It is oriented to resolve all types of legal disputes among people. Islam is a system that ensures to guarantee relative rights of the public. The system also assures the establishment of justice among people stops oppression and punishes the oppressors. The Islamic system follows the directives of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) and the Sunnah, (traditions) of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). There are specific criteria to applying for a position in the Islamic judicial system. The following is a digest list of the criteria requirements:
Moreover, every individual in the Islamic society, regardless of his faith or religious belonging, position or social status, enjoys certain rights. The following is a concise list of such rights:
- The applicant must be a mature, sane and mentally capable.
- The applicant must be fit and healthy in order to surmount the difficulties and challenges of his job.
- The applicant must be well educated and informed about the Shari'ah Islamic rulings and the principles of lawful and unlawful in Islam. In addition, such a person must have the ability and the sense to differentiate between lawful and unlawful matters. In addition, he should have the ability to deduce, assess and offer verdicts in both worldly and religious spheres.
- The applicant must enjoy an honorable, dignified, honest and high moral character. In addition, the applicant must not possess ignoble reputation. He should be a man of upright conduct so that his judgements are well accepted by the parties in dispute.
The right to seek judgement against oppressors. An individual may sue his oppressor to the judicial courts.
Disputing parties: the plaintiff and the defendant must have equal hearings before the judge. This is based on the Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him):“ Whosoever is tested [in his life] to become a judge among Muslims, must be just [and fair] in statement, pointing and seating”.
Additionally, this is based on the Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), instructing Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) when he commissioned him as a judge saying:“ Surely, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) shall guide your heart and fasten your tongue [to the truth]. When the plaintiff and the defendant sit before you do not issue a verdict for one until you hear the statement of the other as you heard the first”.
According to Islam, every one is, essentially, innocent unless proven guilty. This is based on the Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him):“ If people are given [judgements] based on their claims [and statements alone]. You will see people claiming that others killed [their relatives] or possessed their wealth. However, the defendant must offer an oath”.
Baihaqee's report, however, says:The evidence must be produced by the plaintiff and an oath must be offered by the defendant'.
Islam grants rights to the suspect. The accusation on suspicion does not deprive the suspect from his due rights. A suspect may not be forced against his will to say, do or behave in any way. A suspect must not be tortured by any mean. A suspect must not be subjected to any violence, cruelty or hardships in order to force him to give any confession. This is based on the Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him):“ Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) puts down [forgiven] the following items of my Ummah, nation [they are not responsible]: error, forgetfulness and whatever they are forced to do [against their own will]”.
It is, further, reported that the second caliph, Omar bin al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) stated:" If you cause a [suspect] person to be hungry, frightened or imprisoned, do not expect him to be safe and not to confess against his own soul".
Islam affirms personal responsibility. This means no one is to be held responsible for the faults of others. Accusation, suspicion, harassment and punishment must be confined to the guilty person. His family members should not share his indicted penalty. This is based on the verse in the Glorious Qur'ân Sura Fussilat 41:46 the meaning of which is translated as:“ Whoever works righteousness benefits his own soul; whoever works evil, it is against his own soul: nor is Your Lord ever unjust (in the least) to His Servants”.
Moreover, this is based on the Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him):“ No one should be taken [guilty] for the wrong doing of his brother or father”.
Islam prescribes specific code of conduct for judges that should be observed. The letter sent by the second Caliph, Omar bin al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) to one of the assigned judges provides guidelines. The letter states:“ From the second Caliph, Omar bin al-Khattab, the salve servant of Allah to Abdullah bin Qais. Peace be unto you. Sentencing judgements among [disputing] people is a precise and obligatory act that should be followed and executed properly. You should [try your best to] understand the people present before you. Furthermore, [realize that] none will benefit from a right that is not [properly] executed. Give equal looks and seating to [disputant] people in your court so as an influential person may not think to take advantage because of his [super] status. Moreover, a weak person will not despair of [obtaining] justice in your court. The plaintiff must present a proof of evidence. A defendant must take an oath if rejected and denied the claim of the plaintiff. Disputing people may choose to compromise between one another. However, no compromise is acceptable if it renders an unlawful item lawful or vices versa. If you pass a judgement one day, but upon reviewing it on the next, you discover that you made a mistake and the right sentence is not what you passed as a verdict before, then [reopen the case] and pass the right sentence. You should realize that returning to the right sentence and judgement is [much] better than indulging deeper in the falsehood. Try to understand the confusing matters that have no text to support them either from Qur'ân or from Sunnah, traditions of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). You should study the resembling rulings, sentences and similar cases, then assess according to these after obtaining a proper knowledge. Try to choose the most beloved items to Allah and those, which are closest to the truth. Offer a chance to a plaintiff who claims a matter that is not currently present by setting a definite time for him to prove it. If such a plaintiff produces his proof of evidence, adjudicate the case in his favor. If not, then judge against his case. [You must know that] all Muslims are trustworthy insofar as the testimony is concerned, except for a person who is lashed for committing any shameful act in the Islamic society, or a person who is known for false testimonies, or a person who is either a relative or distantly related to the plaintiff. [You should also know that] Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) takes care of all hidden secrets of people and helps you [to judge] by using proofs of evidence. Furthermore, you must not worry, become intolerant, or complain by disputing people for rightful matters where Allah reward for being patient and pleased with the results. [You must also know that] if a person has a good innersole with Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) , Allah will [surely] improve the relations of that man with the public”.
For more information on this subject, please refer to the reference books on adjudication in Islam.
 This Hadith is reported by Darqatnee and Baihaqee.
 Abu Dawoud, Hadith No.3582.
 Bukahri, Hadith No.1711 and Muslim, Hadith No.4277.
 Ibn Majah, Hadith No.2053.
 This statement is reported by Abu Yusuf in his book al-Kharaj.
 Nasaiee, 8:53.
 Tirmithee, Hadith No.3472.