Does Halacha recognize a concept of Kerovim (close relative) when it comes to a legal fiction of selling Chometz?

I believe a convert would inherit halachically from their father. Does this relationship affect the Mechiras Chometz relationship?


1 Answer 1


While you are correct that a convert inherits from his father, this is just a rabbinic enactment to prevent the convert from returning to his gentile roots in order to get the money (Rambam Nachalot 6:10).

The issue of inheriting forbidden objects via this enactment is not a new one and is dealt with already in the Talmud (Kiddushin 17b). The discussion there is about divvying out the Avoda Zara material from the estate to the other heirs in exchange for neutral materials from the estate (which is ordinarily considered benefiting from Avoda Zara). The Talmud rules that in this instance it is ok to do that, so long as the Avoda Zara hasn't already come into the convert's domain. Tosfot there explains this is due to the rabbinic enactment not applying to forbidden objects. In other words, the rabbinic enactment allows a convert to inherit, but only objects that he is allowed to have.

Accordingly, even if the gentile father who owns the Chametz would die over Pesach, the convert wouldn't acquire the Chametz unless he goes and physically takes it. So there's no real concern that all the Chametz will end up being prohibited through ownership of a Jew.

  • 1
    Perhaps a more interesting question is what happens to the Chametz after Pesach if there are no other heirs (if that's possible): is it Hefker or do the convert's rights kick in and you can buy it back from him?
    – Double AA
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 16:31
  • Possibly related is the sugya in BM 96b regarding meilah through yerushah.
    – DonielF
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 16:50
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    What about a born-Jew with a non-Jewish father?
    – Daniel
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 16:53
  • 1
    @Daniel No Yerusha. Also a convert father to a convert son. See Rambam. The enactment was just for a convert with a gentile father.
    – Double AA
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 16:55

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