Take the 2-minute tour ×
Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

If I understand correctly, there are certain cases where a convert can't serve on a beis din judging a native-born Jew. Yet when we break into groups of three for hataras nedarim (annulment of vows), I've never seen anyone stop and ask, "excuse me please but are you a convert?" (Generally a good idea as this would be incredibly hurtful.) I'd strongly assume this is okay, but does anyone have a source?

share|improve this question
2  
I've since seen the newly-published Aruch HaShulchan in Hilchos Nedarim who says relatives can be on a panel for hataras nedarim too. –  Shalom Sep 15 '10 at 18:07
    
Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/16813 –  msh210 Jun 4 '12 at 7:03

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

The isur comes from som tasim alecha melech- all appointment that you do should be from your brethren. This refers to positions where you are forcing people into judgement. But in a "non-appointed" position where the baal din or the noder comes of his own volition, that isn't a problem. (Aruch Hashulchan C.M. 7:1)

share|improve this answer
1  
Would that apply to any court that doesn't exercise summoning power? For example, in a zabla (and therefore by definition pre-agreed-to by the parties) court convened for an actual litigation, would there be no restriction? ... Is there any reason a woman couldn't serve, particularly on the lay b"d for Erev R"H? –  Isaac Moses Sep 8 '10 at 18:12
1  
On my side point: It occurs to me that "'melech' - velo malka" is likely not the only technical barrier to women serving on even lay b"d. The fact that they can't testify probably disqualifies them, too. (And of course there are also the broader sociological considerations.) –  Isaac Moses Sep 8 '10 at 18:18
    
Your second comment about women serving as dayan is correct (SMA). (The other exclusion is technically from me'achecha and not me'achosecha) –  YDK Sep 8 '10 at 19:30
    
Even in a zabla, the party who didn't choose dayan x is being forced. So even there it would not work without explicit: "Do you accept this convert as a dayan?" But erev RH, the beit din is not forcing you to do anything, just annuling vows. Similarly, other times a person wants his vows annulled, a convert can be on the beit din. Also the beit din for a bad dream. –  Ze'ev Felsen May 12 '11 at 15:37

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.