Questions about the Jewish Code of monetary and civil law.

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5
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2answers
233 views

Are robo-calls permitted?

A robo-call is an automated phone call that does not involve a human caller. The majority of these are uninvited solicitations (either for money or votes), and these are the ones I'm asking about. ...
12
votes
1answer
225 views

Insurance against משיח

According to this rather amusing blog post, there is apparently a common clause in rental contracts in Jerusalem, called the Messiah clause, in which, when a landlord outside of Israel rents out a ...
4
votes
2answers
110 views

In auctions today are you still obligated after being out-bid?

A mishna on Erchin 27a discusses buying land back after it has been consecrated. It says that if one offered ten selas, another twenty, etc. up to one who offered fifty, and then that last guy ...
1
vote
0answers
60 views

Is Sephardi Chief Rabbi Sholomo Amar's recent psak on fiduciary responsibility really “unprecedented”?

HaAretz, last week, reported that Sephardic Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar issued a halachic decision that "[b]usiness owners whose actions, either intentionally or through negligence, cause the public ...
3
votes
2answers
104 views

Can a judge take an equal bribe from both sides?

It says in CH"M Siman 9 that it is forbidden for a Dayan to take a shochad (bribe.) What about if a particular Dayan is dealing with a case between Reuvan and Shimon that they both want to give the ...
8
votes
1answer
266 views

Neighbors inappropriate mail

If I see a neighbors inappropriate mail, am I allowed to throw it out?
6
votes
3answers
272 views

Investing in Halacha

Does anyone know some halachik sources that discuss investing in stocks? There are many potential issues. For example, do you need to worry (about ribbis) if your money is used to lend with interest? ...
7
votes
1answer
86 views

Is Dina D'Malchusa a din in Gavra or in Cheftza?

Let's say that Reuvain owes Shimon money in American law, and Dina Demalchusa applies, does that mean: Reuvein has a halachic monetary obligation to Shimon which is as strong as any other ...
5
votes
0answers
106 views

Is it halachically permissible to click on contextual ads with no intention of buying?

Contextual ads are those ads you see when you do a search on Google. The advertisers only pay if someone actually clicks on their ad. It seems "pashut" to me that clicking an ad if you know you're not ...
4
votes
2answers
150 views

Using a Stamp from an RSVP Card

Many invitations come with return card envelopes that are already affixed with proper postage. Suppose, the recipient of such a card has no intention of replying (or decides to reply by some other ...
7
votes
2answers
80 views

Dressing similarly at a Din Torah - When did this change and why?

Gemara Shevuos 31a says that if two people come to Bais Din one dressed in rags and the other dressed in expensive clothing, we make them dress similarly. Sefer Hachinuch Mitzva 235 indicates that ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

Receiving money for a day's work, considering it to cover a debt?

I will pose this general question by presenting the following scenario: Reuvan works for Shimon. One time, at the end of the day, when Shimon came to pay Reuvan for that day's work (which was $100.), ...
1
vote
0answers
94 views

Genevas Daas (deception) with a gift

The Shach in YD Siman 117 Sif-Katan 13 writes, דאין במתנה משום גניבת דעת With regard to a gift there is no problem of "genevas daas" (deception). The Shach writes this in regard to selling ...
2
votes
1answer
151 views

What is the status of a library loan?

When you borrow something from the (secular) library does it follow the same halacha as a loan from one Jew to another?
5
votes
4answers
153 views

Ditch school: stealing?

If your parents pay for you to go to school and you ditch, is that stealing?
6
votes
1answer
89 views

Why can't we Mafkiya kiddushin?

According to DoubleAA, R' Shechter says that any three people have a right to declare items hefker through Hefker Beis Din Hefker. According to that, why doesn't an average Beis Din have a power to ...
14
votes
1answer
192 views

How much must one do to to sign a contract?

Nowadays most software comes with a EULA. In order to install the software one must click the "agree" button. However, there are some software that says are distributed through different licenses. For ...
5
votes
2answers
129 views

Recording music from radio

When I was a kid, I used to enjoy recording music from Jewish radio programs onto cassette tapes (remember those?). Nowadays the process is much easier, as many portable music players include an FM ...
5
votes
0answers
117 views

Which beis din can declare items Hefker?

There is a rule that Hefker Beis Din Hefker, that a court can declare items ownerless. What are the requirements for a Beis Din to declare items ownerless? Are there any courts nowadays with such ...
7
votes
1answer
121 views

Product liability in halacha

What does Judaism say about product liability? That is, if I sell someone a product and — because it was manufactured poorly or not as advertised — the purchaser sustains damage, to ...
6
votes
2answers
188 views

Can I defend my animals with lethal force?

We know that it is permitted, in self-defense, to kill one who is trying to kill you, and I have heard that this applies to other people too (I see someone trying to kill someone else and I ...
13
votes
2answers
217 views

Can a book with ancient text really be copyright?

Pick up your local chumash, siddur or gemara. Open it to the front page. There it is, the dreaded ©. But to me that seems quite odd. Can the text of the actual davening or talmud really be ...
7
votes
1answer
171 views

Transfer of loan / mortgage from non-Jew to Jew

What happens if a Jew borrows money on interest from a non-Jew, and then the lender turns around and sells the debt to a Jew? (Such transactions are very common in the mortgage industry.) Is it ...
8
votes
1answer
99 views

Animal rights vs other considerations in halacha and hashkafa

On a boat, Reuven owns five ostriches and one of them eats a diamond off of Shimon's hat which is on his head. Though we are not sure which one ate it we know with certainty that one of them did. ...
6
votes
2answers
132 views

Do you have to pay if you damage someone in order to stop them from sinning?

There is a story in Brachos where R' Ada bar Ahava ripped a Karbalta (a red non-tznius garment) off a woman, and then discovered that she was not Jewish. He then was fined for that act 400 zuz. He ...
8
votes
1answer
113 views

Does one have to return the specific bills that one stole?

If one stole a hundred dollars in regular cash (e.g. no rare bill editions), and still has those bills, does he have to return those particular bills or can he return any hundred dollars?
10
votes
4answers
378 views

what are the limits of “mesira”?

It seems that most people have an idea that you cannot report a Jew to the non-Jewish authorities (police, government, etc) except for extreme circumstances (imminent danger, abuse, etc). However, ...
7
votes
1answer
186 views

Are kickbacks prohibited?

Would a person be allowed to give/take bribes to a person responsible for purchasing in a company? Would it be forbidden directly as "shochad" (bribery) or under a general prohibition of Gnevas Daas, ...
16
votes
2answers
219 views

Does Jewish Law Recognize Bankruptcy?

If someone borrowed money and then declared bankruptcy, does he still have a halachic obligation to pay it back? If the lender was a corporation (bank, etc.). If the lender was a friend. Do we say ...
4
votes
2answers
155 views

Do non-Jews inherit?

Inspired by this question. If a non-Jew dies, do his children (or other inheritors) automatically assume possession of his properties (karka), loose items (metaltelin), and debts the way Jewish ...
7
votes
4answers
354 views

Patents in Halacha?

If someone invents something new (and unique), does Judaism recognize that he has ownership over the invention [for x years]?
3
votes
0answers
43 views

Ethical business dealings [closed]

A synagogue (shul) employee who is not empowered to obligate the shul financially, convinced a member to get a loan against her house to lend the synagogue money to put on a concert of Jewish music. ...
4
votes
2answers
173 views

Handling Conflict between Jewish and Civil Law

This question is an offshoot from the one titled "Questions about Polygamy in Jewish Law and Culture" Taking under the knowledge that the previous question was well answered with an observation: It's ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

How can one who contradicted witnesses use those witnesses later?

Case 1 Plaintiff Reuvein made a claim against Shimon that Shimon owes $100 to Reuvein through a loan. Shimon said: "I never borrowed anything from you". Reuvein brought two witnesses (Pair A) that ...
5
votes
3answers
198 views

Is there any issue except for Dina Dmalchusa in counterfeiting money?

If someone were to find a way to make exact forgery of currency (in such a way that it would be impossible for anyone to find that it's counterfeit), would there be any prohibition to do so (except ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

No one's ticket collected on the train: destroy?

This is a rolloff of this question: Train ticket not collected: destroy? IF one is on a train that is too packed for any conductor to go on. Or it is a day where there is bad whether and the ...
7
votes
2answers
218 views

Stealing from or causing damage to a third party to save life or limb

Suppose Fred is in danger of death or injury, and the most direct way to avoid that fate involves stealing or damaging property belonging to Ernie, an uninvolved person. Examples: Fred is being ...
4
votes
1answer
94 views

Using physical force to get past a passive blockader

Suppose that Billy wants to enter a building that he's legally entitled to enter, but Augustine places himself in front of the building's entrance in such a way that Billy cannot enter without coming ...
4
votes
1answer
59 views

A worker who did Shich'cha

If a worker forgot a sheave in a field, thereby making it Shich'cha (one of the gifts which the owner of the field must leave to the poor), does he have to pay back the owner?
3
votes
2answers
155 views

Card Counting Permissibility

For what it is (if you haven't heard of it), see Card Counting (wikipedia) Also assuming Gambling is not a problem in that scenario. It's perfectly legal in the U.S. So would it be a problem in ...
11
votes
2answers
229 views

Receiving Too Much Change

Do I have an obligation to give back extra change I receive? Would it matter if the store owner or person giving it to me was a Jew?
6
votes
2answers
159 views

Is one allowed to cancel a check?

If I give a check to someone (as a gift) and I change my mind, am I halachically allowed to cancel it, or do we say that the check is a shtar, and by signing it is considered as if I gave him the ...
6
votes
1answer
53 views

Why can't a minor's rights to eat while harvesting crops be waived?

The Torah grants workers who are harvesting a field to consume some of it while on the job. The Mishna in Bava Metzia (7:6) points out that a worker can waive his Biblically-granted rights, and make ...
3
votes
1answer
82 views

Is one allowed to sell a forged painting?

One makes an exact carbon-copy (perfect copy, in such a way that one will never be able to tell the difference between an original and a copy. For arguments sake, lets say through witchcraft) of (say) ...
1
vote
2answers
90 views

Scratch on a car: liability if panel was later paid by another

If someone scratches my car door and then later a second person knocks it off completely and the second person has to compensate, is the first person who scratched the door still responsible to pay ...
5
votes
1answer
163 views

Car falls into my ditch- I'm not responsible?

Halacha dictates that if someone were to dig a huge hole in the middle of the street and a car fell into it, he would not be responsible to pay for the damage to the car. The language of the Talmud ...
3
votes
1answer
42 views

Do I need to use damage compensation for repairs?

If I get a scratch on a car door and I am compensated, do I have to repair or can I just keep the money and live with the dent or scratch? (This may be a similar question but I am unsure so I made ...
12
votes
3answers
365 views

Are parents responsible if their children damage in a store?

If a parent brings a child (defined as under 13 for a boy and under 12 for a girl) into a store, and that child damages an item, is the parent responsible to pay? Would it matter if the child simply ...
3
votes
2answers
93 views

Am I allowed to use borrowed money for something else?

Reuven goes to his good friend Shimon and tells him that he needs $10,000 for X. Shimon naturally agrees. Reuven then realizes that he needs the money for Y instead. Is Reuven allowed to use the ...
6
votes
1answer
106 views

Can an ex-employee steal customers?

Character definitions: Reuven is the proud owner of Big Business A. Shimon was hired to work for Big Business A. As part of his job, Shimon is responsible for interacting with various Big Business A ...