web analytics
July 30, 2015 / 14 Av, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Missing Payment

Business-Halacha-logo

Dr. Oren had a small psychology practice and rented office space from his colleague, Dr. Wieder, on Thursday afternoons. The rent amounted to $500 for the month. Since the two usually did not see each other, the arrangement was that Dr. Oren would leave the rent money in the top drawer of the desk.

One Thursday afternoon toward the end of the month, Dr. Oren brought the rent money with him. He counted the bills twice: “100, 200, 300, 400, 500 dollars.” He poked around his attaché case for an envelope to put the money in, but couldn’t find one, so he left the stack of bills loose in the drawer.

The following day, Dr. Wieder called. “Did you leave me cash?” he asked Dr. Oren.

“Yes, I did,” replied Dr. Oren. “I didn’t have an envelope, so I left the money in the drawer. I hope you got it.”

“How much did you leave there?” asked Dr. Wieder.

“I left the full amount for the month, $500,” replied Dr. Oren.

“Are you sure of the amount?” asked Dr. Wieder.

“Absolutely; I counted it twice,” answered Dr. Oren. “How much did you find?”

“Only $300,” said Dr. Wieder. “$200 is missing!”

“Do you doubt I left $500?” asked Dr. Oren, slightly offended.

“No, I don’t doubt you,” answered Dr. Wieder. “I’m concerned, though, since I suspect a certain patient of poking around the office. It would have been better had you sealed the money in an envelope.”

“I’m really sorry,” apologized Dr. Oren. “I usually try to leave the money in an envelope. There have been a few times, though, that I left cash loose in the drawer. There was never a problem and you never said anything.”

“I’m not accusing you of doing wrong, but you could have been more careful,” said Dr. Wider. “In any case, you still owe me $200 rent, since I never ended up receiving the money you left.”

“I feel bad,” replied Dr. Oren, “but I shouldn’t have to carry the loss, since I followed our arrangement to leave the money in the drawer. I’d be happy to discuss the issue, though, with Rabbi Dayan.”

“Fine with me,” said Dr. Wieder.

The two met with Rabbi Dayan, and asked: “Who is responsible for the missing $200?”

“There are two issues to consider here,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “One, whether placing money in the drawer is the same as handing it to Dr. Wieder. Two, whether the fact that this was the prearranged agreement is sufficient reason to exempt Dr. Oren.”

“Regarding the first issue,” Rabbi Dayan continued, “a person who owes money remains liable until he hands it over to the lender or his agent [C.M. 120:1]. Here, although the money was not handed directly to Dr. Wieder, placing it in the lender’s house in his presence is like handing it to him.” (Aruch Hashulchan 120:2)

“But I wasn’t present when the money was placed in the drawer,” argued Dr. Wieder. “In fact, I didn’t even find out until after the $200 was taken!”

“When the lender was not aware that the money was placed in his property, there is a question,” explained Rabbi Dayan, “since a person’s property acquires on his behalf even without his awareness [243:20]. Nonetheless, when returning a theft, the owner has to be made aware, so that he knows to guard the stolen object again [355:1]. This likely does not apply here, though, so long as the money was placed in a secure location.” (Pischei Choshen, Halva’ah 5:2)

“Regardless of whether or not Dr. Wieder knew I left the money, how about the second issue?” asked Dr. Oren. “Since our arrangement was to leave the money in the drawer, I don’t see any reason I should remain responsible!”

“Even if the lender instructs the borrower to throw the money to him, the borrower remains responsible if it gets lost, unless the lender explicitly said that the borrower would be exempt,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “This is because the lender presumably meant: ‘Throw the money, but continue watching it.’ However, if the lender said, ‘Give the money to someone specific,’ or, ‘Leave it in a certain secure place,’ the borrower is exempt even if the lender didn’t explicitly exempt him.” (SM”A, Nesivos 120:1)

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 “Missing Payment”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Dore Gold.
Foreign Ministry Calls Sunni Arab Nations ‘Israel’s Allies’
Latest Judaism Stories
011-OT-Maps-Israel-Tribes

One must view the settlement of Israel in a positive light. Thinking otherwise is a grievous sin.

Vaetchanan

Reaching a stronger understanding of what Moses actually did to prevent him from entering the land

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

Anti-Zionism, today’s anti-Semitism, has gone viral, tragically supported globally & by many Jews

The 10 Statements main point was not content but the encounter between G-d & His nation, Israel

Before going in, I had told R’ Nachum all of the things we were doing in Philly, and how it was very important to receive a good bracha on behalf of our newest venture, a Russian Kollel.

Question: When a stranger approaches a congregant in shul asking for tzedakah, should the congregant verify that the person’s need is genuine? Furthermore, what constitutes tzedakah? Is a donation to a synagogue, yeshiva, or hospital considered tzedakah?

Zvi Kirschner
(Via E-Mail)

(JNi.media) Tisha B’Av (Heb: 9th of the month of Av) is a fast day according to rabbinic law and tradition, commemorating the destruction of the First Temple in 586 BCE by the army of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and the destruction of the Second Temple in the year 70 CE by the Roman army led […]

Devarim often parallels the stories in Bereishit but in reverse & can be considered as a corrective

‘Older’ By A Month
‘…Until The Beginning Of Adar’
(Nedarim 63a)

We realize how much we miss something only after it’s gone.

Because the words of Torah gladden the heart, studying Torah is forbidden when Tisha B’Av is on a weekday, except for passages in Scripture that deal with the destruction of the Temple and other calamities.

On Super Bowl Sunday itself, life seems to stop. Over one hundred million people watch the game. About half of the households in the country show it in their living rooms and dens.

Moses begins Sefer Devarim reviewing much of the 40 years in the desert & why he can’t enter Israel

While they are definitely special occurrences, why are they cause for a new holiday?

Torah wasn’t given to be kept in Sinai; Brooklyn or Beverly Hills-It was meant to be kept in Israel!

More Articles from Rabbi Meir Orlian
Business-Halacha-NEW

The two decided to approach Rabbi Dayan. “What is the halachic status of conquered territory?” asked Shalom.

Business-Halacha-NEW

“Does that mean a person can simply renege after payment was made?” asked Benjy incredulously.

“But I’m already dwelling in the apartment,” said Mr. Gold. “Shouldn’t that count? I’m no worse than a neighbor!”

“Is there a difference between rescuing and other services?” asked Ploni.

“What difference does that make?” replied Shraga. “What counts is the agreement that we made. I said two hundred fifty and you accepted.”

“Is the invoice signed by the students?” asked the principal. “They said they didn’t get the pizza.”

“The answer depends on the terms of the purchase agreement and local customs,” replied Rabbi Dayan.

“I wasn’t really thinking,” replied Levi. “Things in the backyard usually don’t need watching. I also didn’t expect you to be away so long. One thing is clear, though: I never accepted responsibility for the cake.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/missing-payment/2012/09/06/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: