web analytics
July 22, 2014 / 24 Tammuz, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Handing It Over

Business-Halacha-logo

At the conclusion of a morning class, Moshe turned to his classmate Yossi.

“I’m heading to a cousin’s bris and then going shopping,” he said. “Could you take my backpack home with you? I’ve got a new laptop in it. ”

“No problem,” said Yossi, taking the backpack.

During lunch break, Yossi met with some friends in the park. While they were eating, his father called, saying he was stuck with the car and needed help.

“I’ve got to run,” Yossi said to his friends. He turned to Nachman, who lived a few doors away from him. “Someone asked me to watch his backpack, with a laptop inside,” he said. “Can you please take it home? I’ll pick it up in the evening.”

“Sure,” said Nachman. “Give it to me.”

Yossi handed the backpack to Nachman, who put it down next to him.

While the group was sitting there, someone came from behind Nachman. He grabbed the backpack and fled. They jumped up and began to chase him, but the thief hopped on a bicycle and got away.

In the evening, Yossi came to collect the backpack. “I’m sorry, but a thief came and stole it,” Nachman related. “You can ask the rest of the group; they witnessed it with their own eyes.”

“You’re kidding!” exclaimed Yossi. “What am I going to tell Moshe?”

“You were an unpaid guardian [shomer chinam] and so was I,” replied Nachman. “Just say that an unpaid guardian is exempt from theft [C.M. 291:1]. Sorry about the loss, but there’s nothing to do.”

Yossi called Moshe. “Real sorry about the backpack,” he apologized. “I was at the park with some friends. My father needed help with his car, so I entrusted the backpack with one of my friends, Nachman, and it got stolen in broad daylight.”

“It was wrong of you to have given the backpack to Nachman,” Moshe said. “You were negligent. You’ll have to pay for the laptop.”

“How was I negligent?” replied Yossi. “Nachman’s a reliable fellow.”

“Why should I trust Nachman?” asked Moshe. “I barely know him.”

“But there were witnesses there,” said Yossi. “They’ll tell you it was stolen!”

“It’s still your fault,” argued Moshe. “Had you kept the backpack with you, it wouldn’t have been stolen.”

“That doesn’t make me negligent,” replied Yossi. “I entrusted the backpack to someone competent.”

“Well, let’s take it up with Rabbi Dayan,” Moshe said. Yossi agreed.

“I entrusted my backpack with Yossi,” Moshe told rabbi Dayan. “He handed it over to his neighbor Nachman, and it was stolen. Is Yossi liable for the backpack?”

“If there is no evidence to the theft, Yossi is liable,” answered Rabbi Dayan. “However, if there are witnesses to the theft, Yossi is exempt.”

“There is evidence of witnesses here,” said Yossi. “But why couldn’t Nachman swear the backpack was stolen, like other guardians?”

“The Gemara [B.M. 36a-b] discusses the case of a guardian who handed the entrusted item over to another guardian [shomer shemasar l'shomer],” explained Rabbi Dayan. “Rav exempts the initial guardian if the item was stolen, because he gave it to a competent person. However, the ruling is like Rav Yochanan, who obligates the initial guardian.”

“Why is he liable?” asked Moshe. “What is Rav Yochanan’s rationale?”

“This is a dispute between Abaye and Rava,” answered Rabbi Dayan. “Abaye explains that a person does not want his item entrusted with a third party. Thus, the initial guardian was inherently negligent in handing it over to another person. Rava, however, explains that although it was wrong to hand the item over to another person, this does not constitute negligence and does not make him liable. Rather, the first guardian is liable because the owner can refuse to believe the oath of the second guardian that the item was stolen, so the concern of actual negligence remains.”

About the Author: Rabbi Meir Orlian is a faculty member of the Business Halacha Institute, headed by HaRav Chaim Kohn, a noted dayan. To receive BHI’s free newsletter, Business Weekly, send an e-mail to subscribe@businesshalacha.com. For questions regarding business halacha issues, or to bring a BHI lecturer to your business or shul, call the confidential hotline at 877-845-8455 or e-mail ask@businesshalacha.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

Please use the Facebook Tab below to leave your comment:

One Response to “Handing It Over”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Current Top Story
Newly completed control tower at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv. June 2, 2014
US and European Flights to Israel Cancelled Due to Rockets
Latest Judaism Stories
PTI-071814

Perhaps, just perhaps, we can relate to this: whenever we feel distant from Hashem, that is the Churban.

Parshat Matot

Over the next 2 weeks covering portion Matot and Maasei, Rabbi Fohrman will bring order to confusion.

Lessons-Emunah-logo

Our home is in the center of the Holy Land, surrounded by (what else?) green hills and valleys.

Business-Halacha-logo

“Sound fine,” said Mrs. Schwartz. “In the middle, paint their names, Shoshana and Yehonasan. He spells his name Yehonasan with a hei and is very particular about it!”

Question: I recently returned from a trip abroad and wanted to say HaGomel. When I mentioned this to the officers of my synagogue, however, they told me – as per the instructions of the synagogue’s rabbi – that I would have to wait until Shabbos to do so. I was not given any reason for this and did not wish to display my ignorance, so I quietly acquiesced. Can you please explain why I had to wait?

Name Withheld
(Via E-Mail)

We may not recognize the adverse affect of eating forbidden foods, but they leave an indelible imprint.

There are several rules that one must adhere to when making a neder.

Important message for Jews in the Diaspora: In times of need run to Israel rather than from Israel.

The negotiation between Moses and the tribes of Reuven and Gad is a model of conflict resolution.

Once again we find ourselves alone – a little lamb among wolves.

When we return to our routines, things don’t have to go back to exactly the way they were.

The Three Weeks determines the “who we are and how we live” as Jews.

Sometimes when Chazal say that two different people are really one, they do not mean it literally, but rather figuratively.

The midrash says that Pinchas, (this parsha), and Eliyahu, prophet of Kings, are one and the same.

More Articles from Rabbi Meir Orlian
Business-Halacha-logo

“Sound fine,” said Mrs. Schwartz. “In the middle, paint their names, Shoshana and Yehonasan. He spells his name Yehonasan with a hei and is very particular about it!”

Business-Halacha-logo

“It is sometimes possible through hataras nedarim, nullification of vows,” replied Rabbi Dayan, “but it’s not simple for charity pledges.

Mr. Haber called Rabbi Dayan. “We sold various household items, including my bicycle, the refrigerator and some professional tools with the expectation of being relocated,” he said. “It turns out we’re staying. Can I annul those sales?”

“You cannot restrain Ari from building a fence on his property,” answered Rabbi Dayan.

“I would understand if I became sick and could not finish,” said Mr. Braun. “But here it was my choice to stop the work and go take care of my mother.”

“David is also entitled, since he is also learning,” Moshe replied. “He’ll be back in a few minutes. Anyway, I’m on a diet and didn’t take one for myself, so I don’t see any problem taking for him.”

Shlomo called Rabbi Dayan. “I lent someone money, and he now denies the loan,” he began. “If the opportunity presents itself, am I allowed to grab money from him?”

“I have no doubt you should pay the full value of the repair,” replied Zvi, “but I’m willing to ask Rabbi Dayan how much you owe.”

    Latest Poll

    Israel's Iron Dome Anti-Missile System:





    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/handing-it-over/2014/02/06/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: