If one drops tefillin without their cover, they must fast or give charity (Kitzur Shulchan Aruch - Yalkut Yosef, Siman 44:2). If one is wearing tefillin and fell with them on, must one fast or give charity? Maybe, if the person fell and not the tefillin, they would not be required to.

Would the halacha change if the tefillin itself touched the ground when the person fell?

  • Why would you assume this to be different than if the tefillin themselves fell? – Jewels Apr 29 '14 at 12:30

The Beis Halevi quoted in the Piskei Teshuva (Chelek 2 : Siman 157) discusses the question of when there are two people heading for the same entrance. We have a Halacha that applies to seforim and respectable people and holy objects in that that we allow them to enter first (kind of like ladies first. See Brachos 47a). The Beis Halevi's asks, what would the halacha be if one person was holding a pair of teffilin and one person was wearing the teffilin, who goes first? Basing himself on the Mishna in Negaim (chap. 13) which states that a person who entered a Beis Hamenugah - a house inflicted with tzaraas while holding objects, the objects become tamei. However, if a person was wearing those objects only he is tamei but the objects remain tahor. The Beis Halevi rules that the one holding the teffilin goes first instead of the one wearing the teffilin. He explains that wearing something is not considered as if you are holding it. Thus, based off this Beis Halevi, it follows that when falling, your not "dropping" the teffilin rather YOU are falling. And even if the teffilin touched the floor, for the teffilin are considered tafel - secondary and subsumed to your body

Quoted Beis Halevi:

פסקי תשובה סימן קנ"ז

הגאון מהור"ד ז"ל מבריסק, נזדמן לפניו שני אנשים בדרך כניסתם לביהמ"ד שאחד מהם היה לבוש טלית ותפילין. והשני נשא את הטו"ת, ויהיה מבוכה בין הלומדים למי מהם יש דין קדימה לכבדו לכנוס ראשון והשיב הגז"ל כי יש להוכיח זה ממשנה דנגעים (פי"ג מ"ט) דמבואר משם דהבגדים בדרך לבישתן אינם נקראין שבאו אל הבית, ואם נושאן ביד, קרינן גם עליהן, והבא אל הבית ולכן הנושא טו"ת קודם לכנוס

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    Can you do us a favor, and type up an English summary of what you copied here? Not everyone can read that picture you posted. – MTL Feb 12 '15 at 2:26
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    I like the discussion from Negaim. But can you show that as regards the penitential customs viz-a-viz dropped tefillin, the distinction between wearing and holding is relevant? It could still be that their touching the ground is detrimental to their Kavod even while you wear them. – Double AA Mar 12 '15 at 17:29
  • @DoubleAA why would you assume that penitence and Hilchos Kedimus are seperate, this halacha is saying mtzad kibud hakedushas teffilin it is "non existent" – Shoel U'Meishiv Mar 13 '15 at 7:41
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    @Mefaresh Ad kedei kach that can't be. Can you walk into a bathroom while wearing it? It's just that you aren't considered carrying it. You still have to respect it. – Double AA Mar 13 '15 at 17:19
  • @doubleAa kedimus is respect. Going into the bathroom is bizui – Shoel U'Meishiv Mar 14 '15 at 17:14

As far as I know (and it's not too far), if someone is sick, G-d forbid, he is allowed to put tefilin sitting or layed down. Maybe falling would fit in this category, of a quick sickness in wich it is allowed to wear tefilin during that short period of time. But ask your rabbi for a truly reliable answer.

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  • welcome to Mi Yodea! When answering questions sources are most valuable. Opinions without supporting sources don't really help anyone and might be very wrong. – Yoni May 8 '14 at 21:54

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