Is it possible to intercept calls to current_user_can() ?


current_user_can('rate', $post_id)

There's no "rate" capability registered, but could I somehow hook into that function and do my own checks, without having to register a role capability?

1 Answer 1


Yes, just filter 'user_has_cap'. You get an array with the current capabilities that you can change without touching the database.

Sample Code

add_filter( 'user_has_cap', 'wpse_53230_catch_cap', 10, 3 );

 * See WP_User::has_cap() in wp-includes/capabilities.php
 * @param  array  $allcaps Existing capabilities for the user
 * @param  string $caps    Capabilities provided by map_meta_cap()
 * @param  array  $args    Arguments for current_user_can()
 * @return array
function wpse_53230_catch_cap( $allcaps, $caps, $args )

  // $args[2] is the post ID
  if($args[0] !== 'beat_chuck_norris' || !isset($args[2]) || !my_checks($args[2]))
    return $allcaps;

  $allcaps['beat_chuck_norris'] = 1;

  return $allcaps;

function my_checks($post_id){
  // here check if the current user can rate this post
  return true;


current_user_can( 'beat_chuck_norris', get_the_ID() )
    and print 'The current user can beat Chuck Norris. Be nice to her!';

Handle super-admins

add_filter('map_meta_cap', 'wpse_53230_catch_cap_for_sa', 10, 4);

function wpse_53230_catch_cap_for_sa($caps, $req_cap, $user_id, $args){

      && is_super_admin($user_id)
      && ($req_cap === 'beat_chuck_norris')
      && !empty($args[0]) // here post ID is $args[0]
      && !my_checks($args[0])
         $caps[] = 'do_not_allow';

  return $caps;    
  • Thanks, but it will return true for super-admins because that filter doesn't run for them as they have all the caps. Commented May 25, 2012 at 11:20

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