I believe that there are specific restrictions placed on a ger (convert) being a legal decisor on a beit din. What are these restrictions and do those, ipso facto, preclude that individual from receiving smicha yadin yadin?

  • 1
    related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/2842/…
    – Menachem
    Jun 4, 2012 at 2:45
  • I remember a different question or answer that discusses gerim and beit din, but I can't find it now
    – Menachem
    Jun 4, 2012 at 2:52
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    @Menachem While related with respect to restrictions, I think this question is distinct and more practical in nature (e.g., can a ger receive smicha yadin yadin in order to judge on financial matters viz. E''H, Ch''M). Further, YDK's answer makes a distinction based off of who is facing arbitration at the beit din, as does the related question you cite. I'm vaguely aware of certain content restrictions (e.g., ger cannot judge death penalty case) but wonder if others also exist.
    – minhag
    Jun 4, 2012 at 2:58
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    If I thought it was a duplicate, I would have said so. Linking to another post makes it show up in the "Linked" list on the right hand side of the page. It's also useful for people who might be looking into the question.
    – Menachem
    Jun 4, 2012 at 3:10
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1 Answer 1


A convert can:

  • Judge a case as part of a beis din that has been accepted by the Yisrael
  • Force a judgment on another convert
  • Force a judgment even on a Yisrael if the converts mother or father was born of a Yisrael

A pure convert cannot:

  • Force judgment on another Yisrael

These laws are based on the double language of שׂוֹם תָּשִׂים עָלֶיךָ מֶלֶךְ, אֲשֶׁר יִבְחַר יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בּוֹ, any appointments should be restricted to the law of kings. One law is that he must be kin - מִקֶּרֶב אַחֶיךָ, תָּשִׂים עָלֶיךָ מֶלֶךְ--לֹא תוּכַל לָתֵת עָלֶיךָ אִישׁ נָכְרִי, אֲשֶׁר לֹא-אָחִיךָ הוּא. The Shulchan Aruch allows a convert the same status of a Yisrael if his mother or father had a Jewish parent, as this can still be called "your kin".

These laws are based on Shulchan Aruch CM 7:1 and the Shach and Sema there.

  • is there a difference between "A convert" and "A pure convert"? Also, please lead me to a discussion where in certain circumstances, a convert does not have the same laws or obligations as a born Jew?
    – ninamag
    Sep 11, 2017 at 6:35

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