web analytics
November 23, 2014 / 1 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Lottery

Business-Halacha-logo

Chaim and Zev had been roommates in yeshiva for a number of years. They had purchased, often jointly, many pictures of gedolim to adorn their walls. One of the most beautiful ones was a hand drawing of Rav Elyashiv, zt”l, that was not easy to find anymore.

When the time came to head their separate ways, they had to divide the pictures they had jointly bought. They were able to agree about most of the pictures, except for the one of Rav Elyashiv, which they both desperately wanted, and two other photos.

“I don’t see any way out of this other than a lottery,” said Chaim. “One will get the picture of Rav Elyashiv and the other will get the other two photos.”

Zev was not thrilled about this arrangement, especially since he had found the picture of Rav Elyashiv and suggested that they buy it, but he didn’t have a better way of deciding the issue.

The two cast a lottery and Chaim won Rav Elyashiv’s picture. Zev grabbed the picture, though, and refused to hand it over. “You know that for something to be legally binding there needs to be a kinyan, an act of acquisition,” he said. “A lottery is just a convenient means to help decide but does not carry any legal validity until you take the item. I’m retracting from my agreement to decide by lottery.”

“What do you mean a lottery does not carry any legal validity?” replied Zev. “We often find a lottery is used to determine respective shares, especially between partners. Even Eretz Yisrael was divided by the tribes through a lottery!”

“That was a special case, where Hashem decreed that the Land should be divided through a miraculous lottery,” said Chaim. “That doesn’t mean, though, that a lottery between you and me carries legal weight!”

“But doesn’t our agreement that the division should be through lottery carry meaning?” argued Zev. “What if you had gotten the picture and I wanted to back out? Would you be so quick to say that I could retract?”

Chaim stood silent for a moment. “I would certainly feel upset,” he acknowledged. “But I guess that you would have the legal right to retract if you insisted.”

“What’s the point of a lottery, then?” said Zev. “It doesn’t make sense. Once the lottery is cast – it’s over! Please give me the picture.”

“I’m not giving it until we speak with Rabbi Dayan,” said Chaim. “I wonder what halacha has to say about this.”

“Agreed,” said Zev. They walked over to Rabbi Dayan’s beis medrash.

“We agreed to divide our joint gedolim pictures by lottery,” explained Chaim. “Zev now refuses to honor the lottery and give me a picture of Rav Elyashiv. Is a lottery legally binding?”

“We find, regarding the division of Eretz Yisrael to the tribes, that a lottery has legal consequence,” said Rabbi Dayan. “Although there were additional factors there, such as the urim v’tumim, since the two partners are mutually interested to divide in this manner, any lottery carries validity.” (B.B. 106a)

“Does that mean that after the lottery I already own the picture?” asked Chaim.

“Whether the lottery itself confers ownership is a dispute between the Rishonim,” answered Rabbi Dayan. “The Rambam, cited by the Shulchan Aruch, rules that the lottery confers ownership; thus, Zev has no the legal ability to retract. The Rosh, cited by the Rama, however, maintains that the lottery just determines the shares. It enables each party to posses his respective share without explicit permission from the other, but does not confer ownership until the party makes an act of acquisition on his respective share. According to this opinion, Zev is able to retract until you acquire the picture.” (C.M. 173:2)

“Who is the halacha in accordance with?” asked Zev.

“Shevut Yaakov [3:162] considers the issue unresolved,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “However, Maharsham [3:186] rules in accordance with the first opinion that the lottery confers legal ownership. He adds that if there was a formal kinyan sudar beforehand to divide based on the lottery, or the two parties signed a contract to that effect, the lottery would certainly confer ownership.” (Pischei Choshen, Shutfim 3:72)

“What about a lottery that does not determine shares, but only the order to choose?” asked Chaim.

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.

No Responses to “Lottery”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
US Secretary of State John Kerry with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier before P5+1 talks. Nov. 22, 2014.
BREAKING: West About to Cave on Key Iranian Demand
Latest Judaism Stories
Rabbi Avi Weiss

Yitzchak thought the Jewish people needed dual leadership: Eisav the physical; Yaakov the spiritual

Weiss-112114-Sufganiot

According to the Sefer Yetzirah, the nature of the month of Kislev is sleep.

Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

Though braggarts come across as conceited, their boasting often reflects a low sense of self-regard

Nimchinsky-112114-Learning

Not every child can live up to our hopes or expectations, but every child is loved by Hashem.

Leaders must always pay attention to the importance of timing.

While our leaders have been shepherds, the vast majority of the Children of Israel were farmers.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

If a man dies childless, the Torah commands the deceased’s brother to marry his brother’s widow in a ceremony known as yibum, or to perform a special form of divorce ceremony with her known as chalitzah.

Dovid turned to the other people sitting at his table. “I’m revoking my hefker of the Chumash,” he announced. “I want to keep it.”

Ever Vigilant
‘When Unworthy, One’s Number Of Years Is Reduced’
(Yevamos 50a)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Ramban interprets Korban as self-sacrifice, each Jew should attempt to recreate Akeidas Yitzchak.

Dr. Schwartz had no other alternatives up his sleeve. He suggested my mother go home and think about what she wanted to do.

Why does Lavan’s speaking before his father show that he was wicked? Disrespectful, yes. Rude, certainly. But a rasha?

We find that in certain circumstances before the Torah was actually given, people were permitted to make calculations as to what would better serve Hashem, even if it were against a mitzvah or aveirah.

More Articles from Rabbi Meir Orlian
Business-Halacha-logo

Dovid turned to the other people sitting at his table. “I’m revoking my hefker of the Chumash,” he announced. “I want to keep it.”

Business-Halacha-logo

“That’s what I thought, so I returned the money to Aharon,” said Reuven. “But this morning, Shimon, who owes me $70, told me he left $70 for me under the table last week! Now I don’t know whether the $70 was connected to the note, and was Aharon’s for the purchase of sefarim, or was repayment to me from Shimon, unrelated to the note.”

On Tuesday, Mr. Ross picked up the bris kit. While driving home, he was stopped by armed thugs. They forced him out of the car and drove off with the bris kit inside.

“ ‘We’re almost out of stamps,’ I said. ‘I’ll be happy to run over to the post office and pick up a supply.’ ”

Noach felt a tug, and then heard a rip. His jacket had been caught on the nail, and the beautiful suit had a tear.

Shimon started adjusting the branches on the roof. In doing so, a branch fell off the other side of the car and hit the side-view mirror, cracking it.

Some seforim on a nearby bookcase toppled over and knocked the esrog out of Lev’s hand. It fell to the ground and a piece broke off.

Mr. Fisher contacted Rabbi Dayan. “Am I allowed to use money of ma’aser kesafim to pay the shul for an aliyah that I bought?” he asked.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/lottery/2013/07/04/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: