web analytics
August 28, 2015 / 13 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Save Me A Seat

Business-Halacha-logo

Shlomo and Kalman planned a trip up north during winter vacation. “We’ll meet at the bus station and board together,” they arranged.

Shlomo arrived at the bus station half an hour early, whereas Kalman got delayed on the way. As departure time approached, Kalman called Shlomo. “I’ll be there in ten minutes,” he said. “Get on the bus meanwhile and save me a seat next to you towards the back.”

Shlomo boarded the bus and settled in. He put his knapsack on the seat next to him, saving it for Kalman.

Someone boarded the bus and asked Shlomo to please remove his knapsack so that he could sit. “I’m saving this seat for my friend,” Shlomo replied politely. “There are other seats available.”

As the minutes wore on, the bus become more and more crowded. Shortly before departure time, Kalman contacted Shlomo again. “I just bought my ticket and am waiting on line,” he said. With relief, Shlomo saw that Kalman was about to board. Before Kalman boarded, though, there were no longer any seats available.

Another young passenger asked Shlomo to move his bag and allow him to sit. “I’m saving the seat for my friend, who’s about to board,” said Shlomo.

“It’s nice of you to look out for your friend,” said the passenger. “However, I’m first and there are no other seats available.”

“But my friend already bought his ticket,” explained Shlomo. “He’s also entitled to a seat, and he asked me to save the seat on his behalf!”

“Who gave you a right to save him a seat?” argued the other passenger. “First come, first served!”

Meanwhile, Kalman boarded the bus. “There’s my friend,” said Shlomo. “He’s coming down the aisle.”

The other passenger, though, removed Shlomo’s knapsack from the seat and sat down.

“What are you doing?” said Shlomo. “You have no right to touch my knapsack.”

“You fellows are rude,” the other passenger said to Shlomo. “You should have been decent enough to remove the knapsack yourself.”

Kalman came over. “I asked you to save me a seat next to you,” he said to Shlomo.

“I did, but all the other seats were taken,” said Shlomo. “This fellow insisted he had a right to the seat.”

When Shlomo and Kalman returned to yeshiva, they asked Rabbi Dayan about the incident. “Did Shlomo have a right to save the seat for me?” asked Kalman.

“The Gemara [B.M. 10a; Kesuvos 84b] teaches that even in cases that a creditor can grab property from his debtor, another person cannot grab on his behalf when there are limited assets and additional creditors who may lose out,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “This is referred to in halacha as ‘tofes l’baal chov bemakom shechav l’achrini.’ The Shulchan Aruch rules that the other person may not do so even if he was an agent of the creditor, who instructed him to grab the property on his behalf.” (C.M. 105:1)

“How does this apply here?” asked Shlomo.

“Each person who buys a bus ticket is entitled, when he pays, to any available seat,” explained Rabbi Dayan. (See C.M. 198:6) “Saving a seat for your friend is like grabbing property on his behalf at the expense of other passengers, who also have a right to that seat. Thus, you are not able to save him the seat if there are no comparable seats available.”

“What if I had bought both tickets?” asked Shlomo. “Does that make a difference?”

“Then it would be permissible to save the seat,” said Rabbi Dayan, “since you are then entitled to utilize two seats. You could even use one seat for the knapsack if you needed.” (See SM”A 105:2)

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 “Save Me A Seat”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Efrat Chief Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, formerly from New York.
One-Third of Americans in Israel Live in Judea and Samaria
Latest Judaism Stories
Rabbi Avi Weiss

The love between Gd & Israel is deeper than marriage; beyond the infinite love of parent for child

Q-A-Klass-logo

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)

Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

Since giving the machatzis hashekel will not change his financial situation, he is obligated to do so even though it is more than a fifth of his income.

Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

Today, few people fast during the Days of Selichot, but the custom is to rise early to recite Selichot.

Each month is associated with a particular tribe. The month of Elul is matched up with Gad. What makes Gad unique?

Sanctions and indictment of the Jew, holding him to a higher standard, is as common and misplaced as ever.

To allow for free will, there are times when Hashem will allow a person the “opportunity to be the messenger.”

“There is a mitzvah to pay the worker on that day,” answered Mr. Lerner.

Be happy. Be grateful. God knows what he is doing. It is all happening for a reason.

We get so busy living our lives, handling our day-to-day little crises that we forget to go that one step deeper and appreciate our lives.

The promise for long life only comes from 2 commandments; What’s the connection between them?

Mighty Amalek deliberately attacked enemy’s weakest members, despicable even by ancient standards

If we parents fail to honor responsibilities then society’s children will pay the price for our sins

Consider how our Heavenly Father feels when He sees His children adopting all other parents but Him

You may wonder, how can we be excited and joyful at a time when His Judgment, not Fatherly Love, reigns supreme?

More Articles from Rabbi Meir Orlian
Business-Halacha-NEW

“There is a mitzvah to pay the worker on that day,” answered Mr. Lerner.

Business-Halacha-NEW

Mr. Steinberg ran downstairs to the ground floor. He saw that the table had fallen onto one of the cars sitting in the parking lot below.

“I don’t understand, though,” objected Mr. Weiss. “If the Torah states that the loan should be remitted, how can Hillel institute that the creditor can collect, against Torah law?”

“So there’s no way to lend past the shemittah year?” asked Eli.

The director picked up the phone to Rabbi Dayan. “One of our counselors lost his check,” he said. “Do we have to issue a new one or is it his loss?”

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

“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!”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/save-me-a-seat/2014/01/09/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: