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Section: Questions   Category: Money Matters
  A r c h i v e s
Money Matters - Pruzbul question
Submitted by Sylvain Blumenfrucht  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: With Shmitta coming up I have a particular issue with my ex-employer owing me money both for unpaid wages(a breach of Dinei de Malchusei Dinei issue), unpaid commissions (a breach of contract problem) and unpaid expenses (a verbal agreement followed for 15 months by a Chazakah of payment). My question is as follows - assuming of course that it is decided/agreed/paskened that these monies are due to me, is a Pruzbul enough to cover these three issues regarding debts to me. Thank you
Answer: Unpaid loans are cancelled at the end of the Shmittah year, Unless a pruzbul is written, which is usually done shortly before the end of the Shmittah year.

The above applies mainly to loans. Unpaid wages and commissions are usually not affected by Shmittah (see Shulchan Aruch, Choshen Mishpat, 67:15), but unpaid expenses that were laid out by the employee may be.

At any rate, any debts that are affected by Shmittah will be recoverable if a valid Pruzbul is executed before the end of the Shmittah year.

posted:2014-08-31 02:27:34  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Dropped Sandwich
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: Reuvein gave me money and asked me to pick up a sandwich for him when I go to the takeaway (where I was going), just before I got back to the office I dropped his sandwich and it was completely ruined. When I got to the office he wasn't there and he left a message saying he had to go and I can have his sandwich. Do I owe him the money for the sandwich which I ruined (and he doesn't know about it)? Please provide as many sources as possible. Thank you.
Answer: It would seem from the story that the sandwich was dropped accidentally, though not in a way that could be described as unpreventable. As such, this would come under the category of "p'shi'ah" - recklessness. Had you taken due care, presumably it would not have fallen. Although you received no remuneration for doing the favour, you nonetheless are financially responsible in such a situation. (Shomer chinam chayav bepeshi'ah.)

Although Reuvain left a message allowing you to eat the sandwich, if he left the message after you had already dropped it, he didn't know at that moment that it was already ruined and that you owed him the value of it instead. Reuvain was not giving a gift, but rather he thought that since he would have no need for it, not being available to eat it , the sandwich would go to waste anyway so he might as well let you eat it. Had he known that there was no sandwich, there is no reason to assume that he wanted to gift you the value.

Thus it seems to me that you would have to pay - or at any rate, to inform Reuvain what happened and leave it up to him.

posted:2013-10-21 17:11:42  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Relationship with Employer
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: Relating to the relationship with my employer in Dinei Momoines. 1/ in 14 months in my current job I have never been paid my monthly wages on time with delays ranging from a few days to nearly two months delay 2/ a pension fund as part of the monthly pay package - where the employer pays in a fixed percentage of the salary, and that is a legal requirement in Israel after 6 month's employment has till not been set up. My employer keeps on blaming his CPA, but when I tried to discuss it with the CPA he informed me that my employer has asked of him NOT to discuss it with me. 3/ my employer discussed with me some ideas he had, to alter the scope of my responsabilities within the company - I told him that a/ I did not think it was fitting to discuss a new direction regarding my responsabilities with the company within the 9 days (in Av) and b/ that I was not sure that his ideas were within the realm of my professional capabilities. I have since been informed by both existing clients and by business contacts of the company that my position has been advertised even though it had been agreed to discuss the matter after Tisha be'Av.# My employer gives the impression of being "an Ehliche Yid" - a close confident and disciple of a well respected Admor but I really feel very hard done by and Halachically not treated correctly. Help - what can I do with the realms of Holocho? Thank you
Answer: Obviously, I cannot say whether you are justified in your complaints or otherwise without hearing both parties resent their case.

If you cannot sort this out through dialogue with your employer, I suggest that you get in touch with a Beis Din and ask them to arbitrate this dispute. If you are in Jerusalem and prefer an English-speaking Beis Din you can find one in the Haredi Directory.

posted:2013-07-21 08:23:31  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Exorbitant Misquoted Charge
Submitted by Devorah  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: If I rent a camera from a shop. on phon they said its 100 Shekel. when my daughter came to get it they said its 100 shekel for every half of an hour of use. I used it for about 2.5 hours but was not planing on paying so much. if I knew before I would call other shops. but it was friday afternoon and to late to go to any other shops. must I pay 250 Shekel?? when I gave it back they didn't ask how long I used it and I didn't say I payed 100 shekel
Answer: If you were aware of the charges at the time that you rented and used the camera, you must pay at the rate agreed. If you were not aware when you used it and only heard afterwards about the exorbitant charge, you need not pay more than the going rate in this case.

If you were the one ordering and paying, and your daughter was picking it up on your behalf, with you being the one who ordered it and is paying for it, then even if your daughter knew about the charge, if she didn't tell you until after you had used it you would not need to pay the full charge.

However if you were aware of the price at the time that you used it, your use of it implies agreement to the terms- if you don't agree then don't use it - and thus you would need to pay the full amount.

posted:2012-11-21 07:49:08  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - contractor over budget
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: We had some work done in the house and before commencment were given a quote. When the work was completed they wanted more money saying that the quote they gave us was for the basic job but because of our specifications there were extra charges and they thought it would be self understood. We argued that though the charges may be justified they hadn't told us about them and may have kept the job simpler had we known. We didn't come to a agreement, but we paid them the original price and they never came back to us. This was five years ago. Do I owe them anything.
Answer: Without hearing the worker's side of the story it is impossible to say for sure. In general though, if the price was agreed for a specific work itinerary, and nothing extra was added after the price was fixed, the worker is not entitled to ask for more at the end.

There may be circumstances in which he can ask for more, such as if the price changes and he cannot complete the work without taking a financial
loss. However, this and other such possibilities can only be ascertained by hearing the full story from both parties.

posted:2012-07-17 05:28:34  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Employee Waiver
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool

1.  It has happend on a number of occasions when checking the receipt after a shop at a supermarket that the cashier has entered the wrong code for a product and as a result undercharged me. Am I obliged to return and pay the difference.

2.  A bus driver accidently printed me a childs bus ticket and charged me such. When I pointed this out to him he said I shouldn't worry about it. Do I have any obligation to the bus company.


1.  Yes, you must return the extra money that you were mistakenly not charged.

2.  The decisive factor in these type of questions is whether the employee of the company has the authority to give a reduction of this nature.
A supermarket cashier, for example, is probably authorized to allow you to pay 10 agorot less than the price. But to give a significant reduction would
require the permission of the manager.

The question here then is whether the bus driver is authorized to waive the extra money. I suspect that in this case he is not, and thus you would need to pay the company.

To be certain, contact the company and ask them if the driver has such authorization.

posted:2012-07-17 05:15:26  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Tsadaka Lottery Winnings
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: Shalom, I was wondering what the din of winnings from a tsadaka raffle are when the tickets are bought with maaser money? What about a present automatically given to anyone donating, would that be any different? Would there also be a difference if the donator was entered into the raffle without asking or even without being aware that his donation had entered him into the raffle? Thank you!
Answer: An almost identical question was asked some time ago.(http://revach.net/ask/archives.php?cid=10&subcat=Tzedaka)

Here's what I wrote then (with a significant additional sentence after the first paragraph):


Answer: With regard to the free gift from a charity organization, it seems to me that one should estimate how much one would have paid for the gift by itself, which one then pays out of one's own pocket, and then the rest can come from ma'aser money. For example if the organization gives a silver cup to anyone who donates $200, and one would pay for such a cup $20, one should give $20 from one's own money, and then one may give the other $180 from ma'aser money.

However, there is room for not making such a deduction, and accepting the gift for free, whilst giving all of the money from ma'aser. This is especially true if the gift is relatively cheap.

One may purchase a lottery ticket from a tzedakkah organisation with ma'aser money. But one should make the following calculation. How much would I have been willing to pay for the ticket had the proceeds not gone to tzedakkah? That amount should come from his own pocket and the remainder may be paid from ma'aser money. For example, if the ticket cost $10, and had the proceeds not gone to tzedakkah he would have been willing to pay $6 for the ticket, he should pay $6 from his own pocket, and may pay the remaining $4 from ma'aser money.

If one wins a prize, one should preferably return to tzedakkah the value of the ticket purchased. As for the rest of the value of the prize, don't forget to take ma'aser from that and give it to tzedakkah!

(R' Moshe Feinstein rules as follows: If there are a fixed number of tickets in the lottery, then there must be a value for each ticket based on the probability of winning, and if the asking price is not much greater than the actual value, such that even one who has no interest in supporting the charity would buy a ticket for that price, one may not purchase the ticket with ma'aser money. If, however, there is no fixed limit to how many tickets will be sold, one cannot fix any value to any single ticket, and thus one may purchase the ticket with ma'aser money.)

If one paid the whole value of the ticket with ma'aser money, and one wins a prize, R' Chaim Kanievsky (Derech Emunah, Matnas Aniyim 7 paragraph "ve'echad me'asarah...") is of the opinion that the entire prize belongs to tzedakkah, as is R' Yisroel Yaakov Fisher (Even Yisrael II 64). However, R' Yaakov Blau (Tzedakkah Umishpot 1:(84)) permits one to pay for the ticket with ma'aser money if one cannot make the above calculation - if one wins a prize, though, one should return the cost of the ticket to tzedakkah as explained above, and tithe the rest of the prize too.

posted:2012-01-29 23:40:25  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Do I have to return the money..
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: For two months I shared a nice relationship with a friend, then out of the blue she became very distant for a reason unkown to me. During the time we were friends she paid for things for me- for example- lunch, coffees etc and refused payment. At this point because the friendship dimished to nothing I'm not sure if she laid out all that money out of good will. My question is do I need to pay her back for whatever she has laid out for me?
Answer: One who gives a gift when on good terms with the recipient cannot demand it back if subsequently he becomes his enemy. Even an ongoing financial
agreement, such as a real-estate rental, that was established when the landlord and the tenant were good friends cannot be cancelled by the landlord due to the tenant becoming unfriendly (Shulchan Aruch, Choshen
Mishpat, 312:9)
posted:2012-01-01 12:37:33  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Maaser for Megilla
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question: Are you allowed to use money set aside for Maaser to purchase a Megilla if otherwise you would not be able to afford one?
Answer: No. Maaser must be used to benefit others, not to purchase objects for yourself, even if they are used for a mitzva.
posted:2011-02-14 09:03:26  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Damages from a goy
Submitted by Adi Salama  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: Shalom, We were recently in Italy and as we were in our hotel room over Yom Tov a full length mirror somehow managed to detach itself from the wall and fall together with its mountings (they simply pulled through the plasterboard wall they had been screwed onto, along with a sizeable piece of the wall too!) onto my 2 yr old son, fracturing his foot in two places. After it had happened and we had returned from the two hospitals we needed to go to, I went to look at an identical mirror in an adjacent room and only then realised that ours had actually been loose from before we had arrived - it would swing at the smallest touch - whilst the other mirror I had seen not only didn't move even a millimetre even when a strong force was used, but even if an fully-grown ADULT, let alone a placid 2 year old, would deliberately attempt to pull it out in the same way ours had fallen out it would be impossible. There were no witnesses at the exact moment it fell, but knowing my son I cannot imagine him having done any more then give it a small tap, perhaps even unintentionally. The hotel we were staying in is part of a major international chain - however our reservation was only ever with Jewish organisers who had rented-out and kashered the entire hotel. What, if any, damages are we entitled to for what happened and who from? Do you have any practical advice as to how to deal with the situation? The expenses we have had so far are primarily taxis to and from hospitals, however my son is unable to walk and stuck in a plaster-cast for some 4-6 weeks. I really appreciate your advice once again! Thank-you very much Adi Salama
Answer: From a Halachic perspective there does not seem to be any room for a financial claim. Nezek does not apply since there is no permanent damage (hopefully). Furthermore, the accident was indirectly caused, and not done actively by anyone.

Technically there might be claim for Sheves - (compensation for lack of wages) but obviously this would not apply for a child, and again, it was caused indirectly. A claim against the organisers would thus not be entertained.

Legally, however, you may well have a claim against the hotel owners, and you are entitled to claim for this if it is applicable.
posted:2010-04-18 16:05:01  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - maaser or debt?
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: An avrech who has some debts but right now earns enough money for saving. should he give out maaser? should he take it from the savings or from his monthly income?
Answer: If he is not using the income to pay off the debts, he should take ma’aser from it (and any money that he puts in savings) unless separating ma’aser will cause him not to pay off his debts, in which case he should first pay off his debts.
posted:2010-02-19 09:22:55  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Tallis with no unique simmon
Submitted by Pinchas  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: About a year ago I left my Talllis at a small Shtiebal that I often daven at on Shabbos. The next day I returned to get it and it seemed that as I had not left it in a Tallis bag someone else used it, and I was unable to find it at the time. Recently, I was at the same Shtiebal and saw what I though was my Tallis. My basis for thinking that it is my tallis is that I recognize the pattern of the black stripes, and after looking at the other tallism available for public use all were clearly not mine. Additionally the tallis in question is the same size as the one that got lost to the best of my memory. May I assume that this is my Tallis?

It is possible that this particular Tallis belongs to someone else, and it is also possible that it belongs to the tzibbur.

As such, you would not be permitted to take it unless you were absolutely certain that this Tallis belongs to you.

posted:2009-12-16 02:51:39  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Maasser
Submitted by shani  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: can I use maasser money to pay for my children's yeshiva tuitions?

The general rule is that anything which is obligatory cannot be paid with ma’aser money, whereas voluntary contributions may be given from ma’aser.

When it comes to children’s education, some Poskim hold that for young boys, since their education is an obligation upon their parents, it cannot be paid from ma’aser, whereas for girls and older boys, since the obligation for their education does not fall on the parents, the costs can be paid from ma’aser. Nonetheless, if the child is studying in a yeshivah or such like that has a dormitory, since the costs of food and board are an obligation upon the father, he cannot pay that portion of the tuition from ma’aser money.

However, Rav Moshe Feinstein (Igros Moshe YD 2:113) rules that nowadays since education is government-mandated, tuition becomes an obligatory cost and cannot be paid from ma’aser money. Nonetheless, he writes that any tuition costs above what is expected from a person of his means a person may pay from ma’aser money; furthermore R’ Yaakov Blau (Tzedaka Umishpot 11 footnote 35) writes that it is commendable to gives one’s ma’aser money to an institution in which one’s children study.

posted:2009-11-23 15:12:39  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Exchanged Talis
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: In error I dry cleaned a talis which I found out afterwards was not mine. The owner of the Talis reimbursed me, Was he liable? I have a feeling that he did not think his Tals needed cleaning.
Answer: When someone performs a service for someone else, even if unsolicited, the recipient must pay for any benefit derived from this.
There are, however, several qualifications to this, and a comprehensive discussion of this issue is beyond the scope of this forum.
However, in this case the ruling would appear to be as follows:
Since the cleaning is irreversible, if the Tallis needed cleaning the owner would need to reimburse you the cost of the cleaning. If it needed no cleaning whatsoever (for example it had just been cleaned by the owner) he need not pay you anything. If it was somewhere in between, he should pay you the amount one who had a Tallis in such a condition would be willing to pay to get it cleaned.
posted:2009-11-11 18:08:26  (0) comments   email to a friend

Money Matters - Thank You For Loan
Submitted by tzvi Schneider  Answered by Rav Yehonoson Hool
Question: Lichvod Ha'Rav: If somebody lends me money... Can I tell him "I apprecciate" ?

It is forbidden to pay any kind of interest on a loan, and this includes even something purely verbal, such as blessing the lender for lending you the money.

To say "Thank you," however, is permitted by some (though not all) authorities, because they regard this not as a favour for the lender but rather as simply good manners.

Saying "I appreciate this" is perhaps similar because it is not so much a blessing to the lender as a statement intended to indicate that I am not so ungrateful as to not acknowledge the loan.

posted:2009-09-17 00:49:39  (0) comments   email to a friend

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