web analytics
December 28, 2014 / 6 Tevet, 5775
 
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Never Borrowed!

Business-Halacha-logo

Mr. Morris was home one evening, when an acquaintance, Mr. Roth, knocked at his door. “May I have a word with you?” Mr. Roth asked.

“Certainly, come in,” Mr. Morris said, welcoming him into the living room.

“Perhaps you’ve forgotten,” Mr. Roth began, “but last year I lent you $500, which you never repaid.”

Mr. Morris scratched his head and thought for a moment. “I never borrowed from you,” he replied.

“You definitely did,” Mr. Roth insisted. “And you never repaid.”

“Do you have any written evidence?” asked Mr. Morris.

“No I don’t,” acknowledged Mr. Roth.

“That just proves I never borrowed,” said Mr. Morris, emphatically.

“No, it doesn’t,” retorted Mr. Roth. “It just proves that I was a fool for not insisting on a written document!” He stood up and left.

Two weeks later, Mr. Morris was summoned to Rabbi Dayan’s bet din. Mr. Roth was asked to present his claim.

“I lent Mr. Morris $500 a year ago, which he hasn’t repaid,” claimed Mr. Roth.

“And what do you say about this?” Rabbi Dayan asked Mr. Morris.

“I never borrowed from Mr. Roth,” claimed Mr. Morris.

Rabbi Dayan turned to Mr. Roth: “Do you have any evidence?” he asked.

“I have two witnesses to the loan,” replied Mr. Roth. Rabbi Dayan called upon the witnesses to present their testimony. Each testified that Mr. Roth lent Mr. Morris $500 in his presence.

Rabbi Dayan asked the witnesses a few basic questions. When he was satisfied with the testimony, he turned to Mr. Morris. “Witnesses have attested to the loan,” he said. “Do you have anything further to say?”

“I would like a month to seek counter-evidence,” requested Mr. Morris. Rabbi Dayan consented to delay the final verdict for a month.

At the second hearing, Rabbi Dayan asked Mr. Morris: “Have you found any evidence to counter the testimony presented last time?”

“Yes, I also have witnesses,” replied Mr. Morris. “They will prove I don’t owe Mr. Roth any money.”

The witnesses testified that Mr. Morris repaid the $500 loan to Mr. Roth four months earlier.

“See, I don’t owe Mr. Roth any money,” Mr. Morris said. “Even if I borrowed, I paid back what I borrowed.” He sat down with a triumphant smile.

Rabbi Dayan requested that Mr. Roth and Mr. Morris exit for a few moments, while the dayanim convened. The two were called in shortly for the ruling:

“Mr. Morris is liable, and must pay the $500,” ruled Rabbi Dayan.

What?!” asked Mr. Morris, shocked. “How can you hold me liable when witnesses state that I already repaid?”

“I will explain the reason,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “There is an important, well-know concept: ‘hoda’as ba’al hadin k’meiah eidim dami’ – the admission of a litigant is like the testimony of a hundred witnesses. In actuality, his admission is believed – to his detriment – more than witnesses! If a person admits he owes, even if witnesses testify that he doesn’t, he remains legally liable.”

“But I didn’t admit anything,” said Mr. Morris. “I deny the charge completely! The witnesses also say I’m exempt!”

“That is correct,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “However, realize that there are two parts to this case: one, whether you borrowed; two, whether you repaid.”

“You initially claimed in court that you never borrowed the money,” continued Rabbi Dayan. “A person who never borrowed doesn’t pay! Thus, implicit in your claim that you didn’t borrow is an admission that you didn’t repay. This is expressed in the Gemara [B.B. 6a] as: kol ha’omer lo lavisi k’omer lo parati dami ­– whoever says, ‘I didn’t borrow,’ is like saying, ‘I didn’t repay.’ ”

“But since there are witnesses to both parts of the case,” reasoned Mr. Morris, “shouldn’t we follow them?”

“In regards to the loan, obviously we accept the witnesses’ testimony that you borrowed, despite your denial otherwise,” explained Rabbi Dayan. “However, regarding repayment, we accept your implicit admission, even against the testimony of the witnesses. Thus, on the one hand, we believe the witnesses that you borrowed. On the other hand, we believe your implicit admission that you didn’t repay.” (79:1,6)

“I don’t understand, though,” insisted Mr. Morris. “All the time, people initially deny outright all kinds of claim, and then come to bet din and adjust their claim and bring witnesses. Are you saying these witnesses are all rendered meaningless?”

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 “Never Borrowed!”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
IDF Paratroopers training at the IDF Tze'elim base.
2015 IDF Military Intelligence ‘Crystal Ball’ Report
Latest Judaism Stories
Torah-Hakehillah-121914

Why is the tzitzis reminder on our clothing? How does it remind us that there are 613 mitzvos?

Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

The court cannot solely rely on death certificates issued by non-Jewish institutions without conducting its own investigation into the facts of the case.

Business-Halacha-logo

“I’m still not sure we have a right to damage his property,” said Mrs. Schloss. “Can you ask someone?”

Rabbi Sacks

Jacob’s blessing of Ephraim over Manasseh had nothing to do with age and everything to do with names

Slavery was universal; So, why was Egypt targeted in this object lesson?

Rav Akiva Eiger is assuming that the logic of the halacha that both the son and his mother are obligated to honor his father and therefore he must honor his fathers wishes first, is a mathematical equation.

The first requirement is a king must admit when he is wrong.

Reward And Punishment
‘Masser Rishon For The levi’im’
(Yevamos 86a)

Question: If Abraham was commanded to circumcise his descendants on the eighth day, why do Arabs – who claim to descend from Abraham through Yishmael – wait until their children are 13 to circumcise them? I am aware that this is a matter of little consequence to our people. Nevertheless, this inconsistency is one that piques my curiosity.

M. Goldman
(Via E-mail)

Reb Shlomo Zalman could not endure honorifics applied to him because of his enormous humility

Because we see these events as world changing, as moments in history, they become part of us forever.

They stammer “I’m not Orthodox,” as if that absolves them from the responsibility of calling to G-d

It’s fascinating how sources attain the status “traditional,” or its equivalent level of kashrus.

She was determined that the Law class was Dina’s best chance of finding a husband, and that was the real reason she wanted her to go to college.

But who would have ever guessed that Hashem would unlock the key to the birth on same day as the English anniversary of our wedding.

More Articles from Rabbi Meir Orlian
Business-Halacha-logo

“I’m still not sure we have a right to damage his property,” said Mrs. Schloss. “Can you ask someone?”

Business-Halacha-logo

He stepped outside, and, to his dismay, the menorah was missing. It had been stolen.

“I do not owe anything,” Mr. Feder replied. “However, if I must come – I will.”

Mr. Weiss refused to listen and sued Mr. Cohen in civil court.

In the afternoon, he reached into his pocket to check for the money, but it was empty. “The $50 bill must have fallen out,” Alex exclaimed. “It’s got to be in one of the rooms I was just at.”

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.”

“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.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/never-borrowed/2012/08/23/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: