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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1answer
122 views

Does Beis Din have the authority to quarantine?

In light of the recent discussions about the legality of quarantining potential Ebola patients, I was wondering if Halacha has the mechanism for such a thing. In an autonomous Jewish society, in ...
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73 views

(How) did the South African rabbinate deal with non-white conversion candidates during apartheid?

As I understand it, during apartheid, the South African government treated the Jews as "white." Did it ever happen that someone in a different racial group expressed interest in converting to Judaism ...
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Can anyone warn a man's wife to give her the status of a sotah?

In the Mishna, Sotah 4:5 (and Bavli 27a) it explains that in certain situations Beit Din may warn a woman not to be secluded with a man and this warning carries the legal status of kinuy such that if ...
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248 views

Is there a penalty under the law for attempted adultery?

If a married man or woman propositions sexual misconduct to a person, or a man or woman propositions a person they know is married, is there a prescribed penalty according to the law, i.e. would a a ...
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Did the Sanhedrin ever convene at night or on holidays?

Were there ever any times or special circumstances in either Temple period where the Sanhedrin would convene on Shabbat, at night or on holidays?
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Looking for a particular idea from Reb Yonason Eibshitz

I recall reading a quote from Reb Yonason Eibshitz concerning a judge on a beis din of 23 faced with a strange situation. The defendant seems to the judge to be guilty of murder, but this judge is the ...
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54 views

What prompted the absent-Sanhedrin-head decree in Rosh Hashana 4:4?

R' Yochanan ben Zakai, in leading the Jewish people during and immediately after the Destruction of the Second Temple, issued many decrees aimed at responding to the new post-Temple reality and ...
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258 views

Relations among King David, the Sanhedrin, and the high priest

Do we have any historical source that discusses the relations among King David, the Sanhedrin during his reign, and the high priest during his reign? Were they on friendly terms? Was there a power ...
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26 views

What is the source for Beis Din's obligation to enforce mitzvos

The Gemarra in Kesubos 86a and Chullin 132b teaches the following: במצות עשה כגון שאומרין לו עשה סוכה ואינו עושה לולב ואינו עושה מכין אותו עד שתצא נפשו With regard to positive mitzvot, for ...
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40 views

Sanhedrin - investigating the evidence, the body and the crime scene?

As I get it, in the Jewish Law, the whole trial is based exclusively on interrogating the witnesses of all the details, but not a need for shreds of evidence or investigation of the crime scene. Say ...
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263 views

Must all parts of Hatarat Nedarim be said in a language which we understand, or only some parts?

Introduction Before Rosh Hashanah, it's customary to do the "annulment of vows" ceremony. There are good reasons for this ceremony. Though the ArtScroll Siddur commentary warns: Annulment is ...
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“Where's the court's power to assess?” Who cares?

The mishna, K'subos 11:5, quotes Raban Shim'on ben Gamliel as saying that a court's property assessment is effective even when found to be far off the mark. The reason he gives is "otherwise, where's ...
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55 views

Exact wording to commit to death penalty

To incriminate a person for a capital sin requires a warning, to distinguish between intentional and unintentional transgression (שוגג או מזיד, Makot 6). A person should be warned that the action he ...
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46 views

Does the proclamation of the New Moon by Beis Din have an effect on nature?

I found in this celebratory volume, p 172 (haoros.com/download.asp?kovetzID=1086&ext=pdf) והנה הרא"ה בספר בדק הבית שלו הובא בש"ך יור"ד סי' קפ"ט סקי"ג הסכים עם קושיית הרמב"ן, ולפיכך כתב שיש ...
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48 views

How frequently should Shatnez laboratories be checked?

Many cities have a laboratory where individuals can take their clothes to check if there is shatnez and if necessary to remove it. Often these laboratories are under the supervision of the local Beis ...
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56 views

What is the judge's job in a bet din?

Here is a story from the Talmud with relevance to current events: It once happened that Tuvia sinned and Zigud alone came and testified against him before Rav Papa. Whereupon, Rav Papa had the ...
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317 views

What is the role of a shofet (as in the book of Shoftim)?

In the book of Shoftim (Judges) we are introduced to a the role of a shofet ("judge"). At first glance, it's a very vague role. Hashem uses judges to prevent the Jews from sinning. But not much else ...
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163 views

Is it a sin to deceive one's converting Beis Din?

I am asking about the situation about a convert-in-progress who lies at some point during the conversion process, either--more to-the-point--in response to the prefatory questions about personal ...
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47 views

Did Rabban Shim'on ben Gamli'el accept the stipulation of the court?

The Mishna (Demay 7:3) gives the case of a worker who doesn't trust his employer to separate tithes. The worker has to separate tithes himself, i.e. 1% (1 fig out of 100) for terumat ma'aser, and ma'...
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41 views

Is a Bet Din allowed to refuse to consider a case?

Frequently, in U.S. courts, a judge can decide not to hear a civil case if he feels that "it's a waste of the court's time" or he doesn't feel that there's sufficient evidence on either side, or ...
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67 views

Sanhedrin Redefining the simple translation of a Passuk

The Sanhedrin are empowered with the capability of defining a certain word or verse in the Torah through a Drasha exegesis (cf. Hilkhot Mamrim 1:3). Firstly, does this mean that before the Sanhedrin ...
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64 views

reckless endangerment

Is it possible to bring someone to beit din on the charge of reckless endangerment? If so - what is the correct terminology to describe this sort of crime? Let's define reckless endangerment ...
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93 views

If a Beis Din Makes a Mistake When Calculating Kiddush HaChodesh, Does it Count?

On one hand, the Rambam says (in 2:10) Once the court sanctifies the new month, it remains sanctified regardless of whether they erred unwittingly, they were led astray [by false witnesses], or ...
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126 views

Devarim Rabbah 2:24 - conversion without beit din?

In Devarim Rabbah 2:24, there is a story where the Rabbis pay condolences to a Roman senator who committed suicide to save the Jews. The Rabbis hint that it was a shame that the senator died ...
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Does a witness in a criminal case have to “volunteer” information?

I have to admit, that I have never been a witness in a criminal case in U.S. However, I asked a lawyer about the swearing to "tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Truth is ...
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31 views

Obligation of a Beis Din to judge and decide on Issurim?

THe question about the baby switch made me think of this question: In the realm of Issurim (Arayos, Mamzerim, conversion, Kohen, etc) when new evidence arises, is a Beis Din and what Beis Din ...
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21 views

Why did the Rambam leave out Beis Din's obligation to enforce mitzvos

The Gemarra in Kesubos 86a and Chullin 132b teaches the following: במצות עשה כגון שאומרין לו עשה סוכה ואינו עושה לולב ואינו עושה מכין אותו עד שתצא נפשו With regard to positive mitzvot, for ...
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The assessment (שומה) of the judges - how it's done?

There are a lot of Mishnayos and Gemoros discussing שומת דיינים. E.g. Kesubos 99b: "מתני׳: שום הדיינין שפיחתו שתות או הוסיפו שתות מכרן בטל" "The assessment of the judges of the value of a ...
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26 views

Was the Sanhedrin open to the public?

Besides the 3x23 rows of the students, were the Sanhedrin meetings open to the public as a rule?
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49 views

Can a Beit -Din force a Jew to save another Jew's life?

A Jew that's terminally ill R"l, and the only treatment is thru a bone marrow transplant. He has a very special type of blood (this is not a biological question). So theoretically and Halachicly (if ...
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56 views

Ten commandments for judges

The Ba'al HaTurim to Devarim 1:13 notes that the word ואשמם, "And I will place [the judges as your head]," is written without the י after the ש. (This is up to debate amongst the commentaries, and not ...
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Flint, Michigan: Who would be HALACHICALLY Liable?

As a hypothetical scenario, we assume that the events of the Flint water crisis are taking place in a location where Beis Din and Jewish law are ascendant. Here's a quick summary of the facts: The ...
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56 views

Where did the sanhedrin get its power from?

I guess we always assume that the power invested in the Sanhedrin comes from "Lo Sasur". However, this posuk is talking about either the Kohanim, or the shofet. Now, I know originally the cohen gadol ...
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54 views

Source for split between דיני ממונות and דיני נפשות

There's a fairly commonly quoted idea in נזיקין masechtos, that a difference exists between דיני ממונות (monetary cases) and דיני נפשות (capital cases); that by דיני ממונות the חייב [whoever is חייב] ...
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184 views

Turn yourself in for a capital offense?

This question assumes that one should accept his punishment after being convicted of a capital offense. Should one turn himself in to (Jewish) authorities after committing an offense for which he ...
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20 views

When and how a court's sale is invalidated?

The topic of דיינים שטעו is common in the Gemmorah. Numerous passages discuss what happens when a court gives a "wrong" ruling as a result of different mistakes, either in Halachic knowledge, common ...
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The Four Authorities of a theoretical Halachic Jewish State

I have found traditionally four types of authorities for the governing/ruling of the Jewish nation: A Prophet (like Moses or Shmuel) A Kohen Gadol (Pinchas) Sanhedrin with Nessi A King (Saul, David) (...
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Yitroh's advice - were the chiefs limited to monetary matters?

Does "הדבר הקטן" refer to monetary matters (דיני ממונות) and "הדבר הגדול" refer to criminal matters (דיני נפשות) or were they also allowed to judge נפשות? (Shmot 18, 21): "...וְשַׂמְתָּ עֲלֵהֶם ...
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Yitroh's advice - was every chief a Beis Din on his own?

This is a follow-up question on "Yitrohs-advise-to-moses-on-appointing-judges (Shmot 18, 21): "...וְשַׂמְתָּ עֲלֵהֶם שָׂרֵי אֲלָפִים שָׂרֵי מֵאוֹת שָׂרֵי חֲמִשִּׁים וְשָׂרֵי עֲשָׂרֹת׃ וְשָׁפְטוּ ...
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Yitroh's advice - did it include hierarchy and subordination?

This is a follow-up question on "Yitrohs-advise-to-moses-on-appointing-judges (Shmot 18, 21): "וְאַתָּה תֶחֱזֶה מִכָּל־הָעָם אַנְשֵׁי־חַיִל יִרְאֵי אֱלֹקים אַנְשֵׁי אֱמֶת שֹׂנְאֵי בָצַע וְשַׂמְתָּ ...
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Does the defendant give his testimony in Nefoshos trials?

The Gemmorah dedicates pages for discussing interrogation of witnesses in Nefoshos trials (NOT MAMONOS, NOT ISHUS), but I don't recall a discussion about the testimony of the defendant. Although the ...