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If someone is going to be away for Passover, how many days before Passover can one search his home for Chumatz?

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According to Aish.com:

If a person or a family leaves the house before the night of the fourteenth, bedikas chametz must be performed on the evening before departure. In this situation, all the rules of bedikas chametz apply fully (e.g. searching at nightfall, not working or eating beforehand), with two exceptions: 1) A blessing is not recited, 2) it is not necessary to distribute ten pieces of bread. The nullification should be said as usual after the search.

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Clarification #1: it's never NECESSARY to do the ten-pieces-of-bread thing, only customary. (Does the kabalistic view differ?) Clarification #2: If you're leaving home 31+ days before Passover, AND you won't be coming back to the house on Passover, then you need not search for unknown chametz. You can use the declaration of "bitul" (nullification) alone. –  Shalom Mar 11 '10 at 20:59
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