Questions tagged [beit-din-court]

Court of Jewish Law. Nowadays, they mostly adjudicate civil disputes, and are composed of 3 judges. Their decisions are halachically binding, and in most cases, legally as well.

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Litigation vs out-of-court settlement

If I understand correctly, Batei Din encourage litigants to compromise / settle out of court rather than go to trial. Where in Gemarah is this stated explicitly?
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How do you punish a murderer without witnesses?

Imagine such a case: A woman walks into a girls bathroom with a machine gun, killing someone. Note: This is not the only case where we cannot punish the criminal. This would apply, in my opinion, to ...
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Galus - ערי מקלט - by self admittance

If someone comes to Bais Din and says he killed someone Beshogeg and there are no witnesses, Will Bais Din be Mechayev him to go to the עיר המקלט? If yes, can he then after a while say that he only ...
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"God told me so" claim in Jewish court [duplicate]

Imagine a person who is otherwise perfectly sane who claims to see a one-time revelation in his sleep/daydream and commits a crime, despite two witnesses warning him. He understands the magnitude of ...
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Meaning of voting on Halacha in a random gathering

I previously associated "Halachic voting" with an authoritative and representative assembly of rabbis, until I stumbled over the following passage: "דְּתַנְיָא: מַעֲשֶׂה בְּרַבִּי ...
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What was the mechanism of publicizing the ruled Halochos in the Talmudic era?

The Talmud teaches us that on numerous occasions various rabbis gathered at a shul or someone's place (usually a penthouse) and ruled/decided certain Halochos (see "נמנו וגמרו"). Was there a ...
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Is a secular court decision considered stealing in 7 laws of noach?

BH There's a couple of slightly related questions How do you handle possible Shabbat issues when receiving a jury summons? Is trying to get out of jury duty permitted halachically? Regarding secular ...
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Are gentiles accepted as witnesses by a Beis Din in civil law arbitrations?

I assume a gentile is not kosher to give eidus in general, (women, minors etc excluded - kal vekhomer gentiles..) although I may be mistaken. But in a civil case brought before a beis din for ...
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What are some criteria that would allow a spouse to file for divorce in secular court?

Halachically, from my understanding, a spouse cannot file for divorce in a secular court without permission from Bais Din. Are there any specific reasons spelled out, besides explicit permission from ...
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The Mitzvah of establishment of courts before Yitro's advice

Allegedly, the 7 Noahide Mitzvos were given to Adam and passed down to Moses. Even if we follow the approach that our forefathers were Noahides prior to the receiving of the Torah, they would be ...
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How would Beis Din rule in the Aguch v Gourary Case (Didan Natzach)? [closed]

In the case of the Chabad library case (Agudas Chasidei Chabad of United States, v Gourary) a US federal court ruled that the (Previous) Rebbe's books belong to the Chabad community and not his ...
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Would a Beit Din open its proceedings with the recitation of Shehecheyanu?

I have never been present at a Beit Din, but recently came across a fictional representation of one (for the sake of explanation, let's say it was in a film or television program) that struck me as ...
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In the Golden Calf massacre, were the Levites only the executioners or also the judges?

After the Golden Calf worshipping, Moses commands the Leviites to go out and kill the infidels: וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר ה' אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל שִׂימוּ אִישׁ־חַרְבּוֹ עַל־יְרֵכוֹ עִבְרוּ וָשׁוּבוּ ...
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Why did Moses command the Levites to go out to slay instead of bringing the idolaters to the court?

After the Golden Calf worshipping, Moses commands the Leviites to go out and kill the infidels: וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר ה' אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל שִׂימוּ אִישׁ־חַרְבּוֹ עַל־יְרֵכוֹ עִבְרוּ וָשׁוּבוּ ...
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Did Pharisee Semichah tradition (rabbinic ordination) include tests?

IIRC, God commanded Moses to ordain Joshuah, so the latter hadn't had to pass any exams. The next 20 generations were all [considered] prophets, so I guess they had divine revelations also. The ...
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In Golden Calf tragedy, who was hit with Heavenly plague?

Th the aftermath of the Golden Calf there were two rounds of executions: the massacre of 3000 fellow Jews and the Heavenly plague: "וַיַּעֲשׂוּ בְנֵי־לֵוִי כִּדְבַר מֹשֶׁה וַיִּפֹּל מִן־הָעָם ...
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How were the 3000 victims of the Golden Calf Massacre different from the rest?

In the Golden Calf massacre roughly 3000 people were killed: "וַיַּעֲשׂוּ בְנֵי־לֵוִי כִּדְבַר מֹשֶׁה וַיִּפֹּל מִן־הָעָם בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא כִּשְׁלֹשֶׁת אַלְפֵי אִישׁ׃" "The Levites did ...
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How Golden Calf massacre can be reconciled with the Halachah

In Moses' words, God ordered a massacre in a very specific way: infidels should be executed with swords, and one should target his own relatives first: ".וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר ה' אֱלֹהֵי ...
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Why would a malicious declaration of Rosh Hachodesh be legal (R"H 25a)?

R' Akiva famously interpreted a verse to legalize malicious rulings of Kiddush Hachodesh: "אתם אפילו שוגגין אתם אפילו מזידין אתם אפילו מוטעין:" "[You are authorized to determine the ...
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Legitimacy of rulings accepted through spontaneous rabbinic gatherings

The Torah prescribes settling the law in a very special place: "If a case is too baffling for you to decide, be it controversy over homicide, civil law, or assault—matters of dispute in your ...
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Doctors losing their licence/ r'shut beit din

Various sources refer to doctors acting with the permission of the beit din; some suggest that this is a mandatory requirement and that it is forbidden to practice medicine without such permission (eg ...
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Is Yitroh's judicial structure mentioned anywhere else in the Tanakh?

Yitro advised to divide the people into groups of 10, 50, 100,1000 and appoint a corresponding judge for every group. Is the legal process of any of such judges mentioned in the Tanakh? I mean, does ...
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Why does Yitroh's advice disregard the tribal structure of the Hebrews?

IMHO, Yitroh's advice that was supported by Moses and God, of dividing the people into groups of 10,50, 100,1000 completely disregards the tribal structure: וְאַתָּה תֶחֱזֶה מִכָּל־הָעָם אַנְשֵׁי־...
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Can a kofer be a dayan on a giyur beis din?

Assuming a person meets the Rambam's definition of a kofer as outlined in Hilchos Teshuvah Chapter 3, can such a person serve as dayan on a giyur beis din?
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When is the "insanity defense" applicable in Jewish Law? [duplicate]

In regards to the Halimi murder in France, a person made the assertion that Jewish law would agree with the recent verdict, as someone judged to lack discernment is not culpable. My memory is that ...
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Is there any Appeal Process after a Ruling of a Beis Din

Granted Avram Avinu didn't accept the initial sentence, but that was regarding a decree of Hashem. Nowadays, is there in the legal structure an appellate Beis Bin where one can have recourse to have a ...
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How come that nobody could oppose to R' Gamliel in Halachah but could boot him promptly as the President?

I'm trying to understand the mechanics of the Jewish Presidency as presented in Berakhot.28a. In the story R"G asks if there is anybody who could object to him in a Halachic issue, and nobody ...
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Selection of pupils under R' Gamliel in Berakhot 28a

"תָּנָא אוֹתוֹ הַיּוֹם, סִלְּקוּהוּ לְשׁוֹמֵר הַפֶּתַח וְנִתְּנָה לָהֶם רְשׁוּת לַתַּלְמִידִים לִיכָּנֵס. שֶׁהָיָה רַבָּן גַּמְלִיאֵל מַכְרִיז וְאוֹמֵר: כׇּל תַּלְמִיד שֶׁאֵין תּוֹכוֹ כְּבָרוֹ, ...
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What was the Halachic base for establishing the inheritance of the Great Sanhedrin Presidency?

In the line of Nesi'im from Hillel to Gamliel IV, the position passed from father to son even if the son wasn't the brightest sage of the Sanhedrin (see R' Gamliel's testimony to R' Yehoshua). Of ...
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How to understand the requirement for Supreme Judge to be tall and handsome?

Just as the members of a court of law must be cleared with respect to uprightness, so must they be clear of any physical defect. Every effort should be exerted in an intensive search for sufficiently ...
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At what age is a judge too old for the Sanhedrin?

A man who is advanced in years ... must not be appointed member of any Sanhedrin, since he is required to be compassionate. Hil. Sanhedrin 2.2 This is based on several Mishnaic (Horayot 1.4) and ...
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How much wisdom is the priesthood worth for the judges of the Sanhedrin?

It is a mitzvah to have priests and Levites included in the Great Sanhedrin... And if none can be found, it is permissible to have a court of exclusively Israelite judges. Rambam's Hil. Sanhedrin 2.2 ...
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Why did the model of Rabbinic Pairs (Zugot) emerge and why was it abolished?

In What was the position of Av Beis Din vs Nassi in Rabbinic Pairs? I asked about the description of the two positions in the Sanhedrin. However, why did this model suddenly emerge after almost 1500 ...
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What was the position of Av Beis Din vs Nassi in Rabbinic Pairs?

Traditionally, from Moses and on there was always only one head of the Sanhedrin, the president, the prince, the king, the Supreme Judge, Av Beis Din, etc. No other members or titles or names are ever ...
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When can you disregard a Jewish court's ruling?

Tractate Horayot discusses cases where rabbis and Jewish courts issue wrong rulings about Jewish observance, and what they must do to remedy. In particular, it rules: This is the principle: One who ...
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Are expert witnesses allowed in Jewish law?

The Mishna says: If one takes payment to ... give evidence, his evidence is void. (Bekhorot 4:6) So if you are paid to testify, your testimony is invalid. Does this apply to paid "expert ...
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Does the Torah allow lack of modesty?

The Talmud [Sanhedrin 46a; Yevamot 90b] mentions a case in which a man was flogged for having intercourse with his wife in public, which is not forbidden by the Torah. The judges decreed that when &...
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When must we go beyond the Torah?

We are taught that we must sometimes go “beyond the letter of the law” (לפנים משורת הדין) to do "what is right and good in the sight of the Lord" [Deut. 6:18]. The Talmud says: Rabbi ...
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Toen Rabbani in Halacha

My understanding that a To’ein Rabbani is the equivalent of an attorney representing one in the beis din who has the required familiarity and certification of both state law and halacha. Is this okay ...
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Does birchat hachodesh need three people?

Does birchat hachodesh need three (or four) people preferably as a commemoration to Beth Din?
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What is a majority that forces the Sanhedrin to bring an offering?

The Mishna states that a majority who followed an erroneous decision is needed to force the Beit Din to bring an offering. Is this an absolute majority? The majority of people cannot carry out many ...
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Why does the gemara seem to care more about erasing God's name than getting the correct ruling for a sotah?

In the mishna on Sotah 7a , we learn that the beis din intimidates the sotah in order to try to get her to admit to wrongdoing and avoid drinking the sotah water. The gemara on 7b asks why our mishna ...
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Why doesn't the Talmud consider the possibility that the later court was greater in wisdom and number?

In discussing the source that Megillat Esther may be read on the 11th, 12th, or 13th of Adar in addition to the 14th and 15th of Adar, the Talmud (Megillah 2a) has the following exchange: What we ...
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What punitive powers, if any, does a modern day Beit Din posses?

If a person is summoned to a Beit Din today for a legal or monetary dispute and refuses to come to the Beit Din or participate in the process in any way, what punitive powers does a Beit Din in ...
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If G-d is the final judge, what's the point of human courts?

If G-d is the final judge, what's the point of human courts in Judaism? Aside from their obvious function in practical matters like divorce that need to be taken care of here and now and not decided ...
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Charity given to poor person who then becomes wealthy

If someone decided to help a poor family out by giving them a substantial amount of money (years worth) and then subsequently the poor gets yerusha or wins the lottery, according to the halacha does ...
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When is ignorance of the law an excuse?

In capital cases (say, murder or adultery), ignorance of the law is a valid defense. A Jewish court requires two witnesses to give evidence that the defendant was taught ahead of time that his action ...
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Do decentralized arbitration markets satisfy mitzvah to set up courts?

Do decentralized arbitration markets like Aragon satisfy the noahide mitzvah to set up courts? Context: Aragon is a decentralized arbitration market, rather than being tied to any one nation-state it ...
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R' Meir of Rotenburg responsum cited by Mahari Bruna

At the end of Mahari Bruna responsum 111 (שו"ת מהר"י מברונא סימן קיא) he refers to a responsum by R' Meir of Rotenburg in which it was held that anyone could demand, on pain of cherem, a copy of any ...
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How can having witnesses to a crime lessen the punishment?

This answer describes a scenario where if a sin (relations with a non Jew for purposes of marriage) is committed without witnesses, one gets punished with kares, but if there are witnesses he gets ...
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