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Many websites and computer applications require users to agree to "Terms and Conditions". However, few users actually read them. Are such conditions halachically binding? Does it depend on whether such conditions are reasonable in some way?

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I remember hearing/reading recently that it WAS binding, although since I don't remember the details or any sources, I can't write an actual answer. –  Salmononius2 May 7 at 21:31
You're signing a contract and agreeing to its contents. You only have yourself to blame if you don't know what you're agreeing to. –  Shmuel May 7 at 21:55
@Shmuel Do you have a source? –  Ypnypn May 7 at 21:58
Many programs now require you to scroll to the bottom, to compel you to actually read it. –  Shmuel May 7 at 21:59

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

The signature of a person on a contract or on any other document involved in any form of transaction between two or more parties is considered be an absolutely valid Halachic Kinyan. A person who has signed such a document may not back out of the agreement that he has signed without the express permission of the other party involved.

The signature of a person on a document constitutes agreement to all terms mentioned in the document, even if witnesses testify that the signer did not read or understand all of the terms mentioned therein. Therefore, before signing any document a person should carefully examine everything mentioned in it, or ask someone whom he trusts to explain to him what exactly it is that he is signing to.

The Halachos discussed above are stated explicitly in the Shulchan Oruch (Choshen Mishpat 69:1), in the Shach there, in the Nesivos in Biurim, and in the Teshuvos HaRashba (Siman 77).


(This answer assumes the digital EULA\Terms and Conditions is a valid halachic contract, and the checkbox is a valid halachic signature. Whether this is true is asked here and here.)

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+1 as that's very relevant, but note that the question is about digital agreements rather than signatures on documents. –  msh210 May 7 at 22:50
@Shmuel I have had this arguement with a dayan here. I maintain otherwise. In secular law if one provides a standard contract he has to tell him if there is any small print. Jewish law is no different. –  preferred May 7 at 22:55
@msh210 - That's a separate question. –  Shmuel May 7 at 23:12
@preferred - I don't understand your point. All the print, large and small, is presented to you. This question is about whether you agree to it without reading it. –  Shmuel May 7 at 23:15
@Shmuel I wrote a standard contract of which there are many. If someone changed it or gave the impression that it was a standard one when it really contained small print and did not tell him his signature does not count –  preferred May 7 at 23:26

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