One should not take his 3 steps backward after davening shmoneh esrei if there is a person directly behind him still davening [citation needed]. I believe this is true no matter how far the person behind him is, but I'm certain that it's true if he's less than 4 amot away. Since he is not able to take his steps back to complete shmoneh esrei, I would imagine that he is not able to reply to all (or perhaps any) parts of davening that would normally be responded to such as barukh hu uvarukh shemo and amein to the berakhot of chazarat hasha"tz, kedusha, amein yehei shemei rabba, etc. What kinds of responses are permitted in this state?

Assume that the person has said yihyu leratzon... but has not yet taken three steps back and said oseh shalom.

  • torah.org/advanced/weekly-halacha/5772/lechlecha.html "If those options are not available, he should recite Oseh Shalom without stepping back three steps and then walk away"[10] Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 2:08
  • 1
    Nearly a duplicate of judaism.stackexchange.com/q/53594.
    – msh210
    Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 2:12
  • @joshwaxman that was talking about the case where there is a pressing need to leave.
    – Daniel
    Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 2:19
  • You can also take 3 steps to the side.
    – CashCow
    Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 8:52
  • @CashCow Not if doing that also passes in front of someone still davening.
    – Daniel
    Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 12:24


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