If a family member dies without leaving any children to say Kaddish for them, can another family member take on the job of saying Kaddish? Is it permissible even if the parents of the one saying it are still alive?

I know that some people do not say the Mourner's Kaddish if both of their parents are alive. I am not certain if this is just a custom, or if it is actually forbidden to. If the parents do not object, then why would there be any problem with anyone Sanctifying the Name? Someone should say it for a Jew, right?

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    @DanF, no. My question is not related to the existence of deceased relatives. IIR my question question properly, this is not a dupe. – Noach MiFrankfurt Jun 25 '15 at 23:26
  • @NoachmiFrankfurt "existence of deceased relatives" - Huh??? If they're deceased, how can they exist??? (OK, I know what you meant ;-) Seriously, I don't see the difference between this question and yours. What did I miss? – DanF Jun 26 '15 at 13:14
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    @DanF, that question appears to be particularly about resolving a difference between one's parents and one's rabbi. – Isaac Moses Jun 26 '15 at 13:55
  • @IsaacMoses, if the question isn't a duplicate, then the answer on the other question needs to be deleted and the phrase at the end of that question that justified the answer modified to not mislead future answers about the intention of the question. – Yishai Jun 28 '15 at 18:20
  • @Yishai, I agreee that that answer doesn't answer the question. I've voted to close that question, since, despite the disclaimer, it's asking "what should I do in my specific situation?" – Isaac Moses Jun 29 '15 at 14:57

If one's parents give permission for one to do so, then one may. For example, I was asked by my mother to say kaddish for an aunt who died without any children. However, if the parents object, then it is a matter of Kibud Av Ve'Aim (honoring one's parents) because they could regard it as expressing a wish that for them to die. As seen in the sources, it is a requirement that the parents agree before one starts saying the kaddish.

When the parents do consent, it can be considered that one is honoring his parents by doing this. in their stead.

Can I say kaddish for someone if my parents are still alive?

Rabbi Latowicz: if no one else available, and the grandchild's parents consent... then it is ok

Saying Kaddish for a Person Who Does Not Have an Adult Son

The grandson and son-in-law are permitted to say Kaddish only when one of their own parents is deceased, or if their parents agree to his reciting Kaddish while they are living. However, someone whose parents are strict that he not say Kaddish while they are both alive may not recite the Kaddish for his grandparent or in-law.

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  • A local rabbi in Chicago disallows doing this even with the parents' permission – Daniel Jun 25 '15 at 23:06
  • Parents who don't give permission should really just get over themselves and let the kid do something nice. What kind of chinukh is that anyway? That your own ego and fear of a child's conspiracy against you outweighs chesed shel emet? – Double AA Jun 25 '15 at 23:40
  • @DoubleAA What the parent should do is not part of the question. If the parent believes that the child saying kaddish for the relative will cause him to have to say kaddish for the parent (as some people do), then it is an actual sakannah (in the parent's mind). However, that is not part of this question. – sabbahillel Jun 26 '15 at 3:03
  • @sabbahillel Indeed it is not part of the question. You should know though that just bc a parent believes something doesn't make it a sakana. It is not a sakana. Skipping this opportunity is the same as if your parents told you not to jump rope. You listen because they said so not because they're being even slightly reasonable. – Double AA Jun 26 '15 at 3:04
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    @rosends I would guess that it is better to ask again as circumstances can change – sabbahillel Dec 3 '17 at 16:55

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