The prohibition against owning Chametz-“Tashbisu/Baal Yiraeh Ubaal Yimatzei”:

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The prohibition against owning Chametz-“Tashbisu/Baal Yiraeh Ubaal Yimatzei”:

As explained in the previous Halacha, the Torah prohibited the owning of Chametz under three separate commands, one positive [Tashbisu] and two negative [Baal Yiraeh Ubaal Yimatzeh]. There exists a Biblical and Rabbinical owning prohibition, which are dependent on various factors. In some cases, the possession of Chametz transgresses a Biblical owning prohibition, in other cases it transgresses a Rabbinical owning prohibition, and in some cases, is even allowed. This is dependent on the following factors:

  1. Who is the legal owner of the Chametz?
  2. Where is the Chametz being stored?
  3. Does one have liability over the Chametz?
  4. What is the size of the Chametz being owned?

The definition of ownership-The legal owner:

The Biblical prohibition against owning Chametz only applies if one is the legal owner of the Chametz, or has liability over it as explained in C. In this Halacha we will discuss the Halachic definition of ownership from both a Biblical and Rabbinical perspective.

Possessing unknown Chametz:[1] It is Biblically forbidden to own even unknown Chametz, and hence one who does not plan to disown his Chametz before Pesach is Biblically required to search his home to get rid of the unknown Chametz.

Storing Chametz that one has nullified or disowned:[2] Biblically, one does not transgress the owning prohibition if he does not own the Chametz and does not have liability over it, even if the Chametz remains in his home. Thus, if one nullified or disowned his Chametz prior to the 6th hour on Erev Pesach [i.e. Bittul], it is Biblically permitted to have the Chametz remain in one’s home over Pesach.[3] However, if one owned Chametz past the 6th hour on Erev Pesach, one Biblically transgresses the owning prohibition, even if he disowns the Chametz, until it is destroyed.[4] The above is only from a Biblical perspective. However, Rabbinically, one transgresses the owning prohibition of Baal Yiraeh/Yimatzeh and Tashbisu if he leaves disowned or nullified Chametz in his possession, if the Chametz is clean or a Kezayis of size.[5] If, however, the disowned/nullfied Chametz is less than a Kezayis in size, and is dirty, then it may remain in one’s home.[6]

Storing Chametz of a gentile: The above Rabbinical prohibition only applies against storing one’s Chametz that one disowned. However, it is permitted to leave a gentile’s Chametz in one’s home[7], if one does not have any liability over it even in a case of negligence[8], and one places it behind a Mechitza/divider of ten Tefachim [80 cm.].[9] This, however, only applies from before Pesach, however, on Pesach, it is Rabbinically forbidden to allow a gentile to store/leave his Chametz in one’s home, as will be explained in Halacha 10.[10]

Storing Chametz of another Jew:[11] Although one does not transgress the owning prohibition on another Jew’s Chametz, it is forbidden for one to have Chametz that belongs to another Jew remain in one’s home on Pesach even if one has no liability over the Chametz, unless that Jew performed Mechiras Chametz.[12] See Chapter 3 Halacha 14 for the full details of this subject!

Chametz of a purchased or rented property, home, hotel room: One who rents a home or property acquires all the Chametz that is left in that property, and it thus must be cleaned and checked before Pesach. See Chapter 3 Halacha 13 for the full details of this matter! If one will not be staying in that property over Pesach, see Chapter 3 Halacha 12!

A Chametz Mashkon/collateral: If a Jewish lender received Chametz as collateral from a Jew who he loaned money to, then he is Biblically considered to be the owner of the Chametz collateral, and must get rid of it before Pesach.[13] If a Jewish lender received Chametz as collateral from a gentile who he loaned money to, then the Chametz is not considered to be owned by him, unless an acquisition and stipulation was already made on the Chametz that it should belong to the Jew from before Pesach.[14] Nonetheless, even in the case that the Mashkon does not belong to the Jew, if the Jewish lender entered the Chametz into his property, and he contains some form of liability over it if it were to get lost or stolen, then he is Biblically obligated to destroy the Chametz before Pesach, as explained in C. Thus, the Chametz collateral that one has of a gentile may only be in one’s possession over Pesach if he is not the legal owner of the Chametz and does not have any liability over it, not even liability due to negligence.[15] If a gentile lender received Chametz as collateral from a Jew who he loaned money to, then the Chametz is considered owned by the Jew, and must be destroyed by him, unless an acquisition and stipulation was already made on the Chametz that it will belong to the gentile from before Pesach, and the Jew holds no liability over it.[16]

 

Owning stocks in companies who own/sell Chametz:[17]

Some Poskim[18] rule that owning stocks in a company that owns/sells Chametz, is not considered ownership of the Chametz of the company and hence one is not required to sell his stocks before Pesach. Other Poskim[19], however, rule that owning stocks of a company makes one be considered a Halachic partner of ownership in all their assets, including their Chametz. Accordingly, one must sell all his stocks in a company who owns/sells Chametz. Practically, the custom is to include one’s stocks in the Mechiras Chametz sale that is done before Pesach. 

Wives: It is best for wives to appoint their husbands to include them in the Mechiras Chametz sale, by having him add their name to the Shtar Harsha.[20] [See Chapter 5 Halacha 1 in Q&A!]

 

Money invested in a bank, hedge fund, investment firm:[21]

One who has money in a bank, or firm, who invests their client’s money in Chametz owning companies is not considered an owner of the Chametz owned by the companies that the bank/firm have invested in.[22]

 

The definition of ownership-Possessing the Chametz in an area of ownership:[23]

It is Biblically forbidden to own Chametz on Pesach even if the Chametz will not be within one’s home over Pesach, but will be left elsewhere, in an area that one owns. Likewise, this applies even if the Chametz is hidden away in an area from which the Chametz is not visible. However, this only applies to Chametz that is within one’s property, either through ownership, rental, or borrowing. If, however, the Chametz is within an area that he does not own, and he did not borrow, such as he placed the Chametz in public property or in the house of another person without his knowledge, then Biblically it may be left there over Pesach. However, Rabbinically, he is obligated to destroy the Chametz that he owns, even though it is not within his property. See Halacha 8 for the full details on this Rabbinical prohibition.

Owning Chametz that is under a mound:[24] It is disputed amongst Poskim as to whether one Biblically transgresses owning Chametz if the Chametz is found under a three Tefach mound throughout Pesach and is hence not accessible. However, according to all, he is at least Rabbinically obligated to destroy or disown the Chametz, even though it is under a mound. If, however, the mound is so large that it is not possible even for humans to undo, then the Chametz is considered completely destroyed from the world and one is not considered to own it over Pesach. See Chapter 3 Halacha 5D for the full details of this matter!

Owning Chametz in a different city:[25] It is disputed amongst Poskim as to whether one Biblically transgresses owning Chametz if the Chametz is found in a different city throughout Pesach and is hence not accessible. However, according to all, he is at least Rabbinically obligated to destroy or disown the Chametz, even though it is not within the same city. See Chapter 3 Halacha 12 for the full details of this matter!

 

Q&A

If one were to take his Chametz and place it in a public area without disowning it, would he transgress the Biblical owning prohibition?[26]

No, as the Chametz is not in his property.

 

If one were to disown his Chametz and place it in someone else’s home without their permission, would he still be Rabbinically obligated to destroy it?

Yes.[27]

 

The definition of ownership-Having liability on Chametz that one does not own:[28]

If one does not own the Chametz but carries liability over the Chametz if anything were to happen to it, such as that if the Chametz were to be damaged or stolen one would have liability to pay for the loss [i.e. insurance company], then it is Biblically forbidden to have such Chametz remain in one’s property over Pesach, whether it is owned by a Jew or a gentile.[29] According to some opinions [and so is how we initially rule], this applies even if one only carries liability in a case of negligence, and even if one will be held liable illegally.[30] [Thus, one may not store a gentile’s Chametz in one’s home unless he explicitly arranges with him to have no liability over it, even due to negligence. If no such arrangement was explicitly made, it may not be stored in one’s home over Pesach.[31]]

Definition of one’s property: The definition of one’s property includes even property that one borrowed.[32] Accordingly, it is Biblically forbidden for the Jew to arrange to leave the insured Chametz in another gentile’s property, if that gentile is not the owner.[33] Furthermore, according to some Poskim [and so is how we initially rule], it is even forbidden to rent an area of one’s property to the gentile owner and have him store the insured Chametz there.[34] It is, however, permitted to have the insured Chametz stored in the gentile owner’s property.[35] Likewise, it is permitted for the gentile owner to arrange to have the insured Chametz placed in another person’s property over Pesach.[36]  

What to do with Chametz that one has liability over:[37] One who has liability over Chametz that is in his property must return the Chametz to the Jewish/gentile owner, or sell the Chametz to another gentile[38] [or remove his liability from it] before the 6th hour on Erev Pesach. It, however, does not even Biblically help to nullify the Chametz, even before the 6th hour.[39] If the 6th hour has already arrived, and one has not done any of the above, then two options remain: 1) Return the Chametz to the gentile owner.[40] 2) Destroy the Chametz, as stated in Halacha 6B. He, however, may no longer sell the Chametz to another gentile once the 6th hour has arrived, as explained in Halacha 3!

Liability over stored Chametz of a Jew:[41] One who has liability over Chametz of a Jew that is stored in his property Biblically transgresses the owning prohibition, as stated above. One is thus required to verify that the Jewish owner performs Mechiras Chametz before Pesach, thus removing one’s liability, as explained in Q&A below! If one could not verify this then he must sell the Chametz of behalf of the Jew, as explained and Chapter 3 Halacha 14.

 

 

Summary:

It is forbidden for a Jew to have any form of liability [even due to negligence] over Chametz during Pesach, if the Chametz is being kept in property that is owned, rented, or borrowed, by the Jew. It is permitted for the Chametz to be stored in the property of the gentile owner, or another property that the gentile owner arranged for it to be stored in.

 

Practical Application-Q&A

A gentile acquaintance asked me to hold his Chametz for him in my home over Pesach until he returns from a trip, may I do so?

No, unless one explicitly arranges with him that he is not to be held liable for loss and damages even if he is negligent in guarding the Chametz.

 

If one is storing the Chametz of a gentile in his home, and he did not relinquish liability, does it help for him to perform Mechiras Chametz through a Rav to avoid the prohibition?

No. The Mechira only helps to remove one’s personal ownership over Chametz, and does not remove any liability that one may have on the Chametz of someone else. Thus, one must relinquish any liability from the Chametz in order to be allowed to store it in his home, even if he performs Mechiras Chametz. However, if one explicitly includes in the Mechira that he is also selling the gentile’s Chametz that he has liability over, then seemingly the sale is valid, and his liability ceases to exist.[42] However, in such a case, he must pay the gentile back for the Chametz sold.

Do we retain liability over Chametz that remains in our home and was sold to the gentile through Mechiras Chametz?[43]

Allowing the Chametz to remain in one’s home after the sale does not make it into a Pikadon, and does not make one liable for damages, even due to negligence, unless the gentile stipulated otherwise.[44] [Thus, by a normal Mechiras Chametz sale in which the sold Chametz remains in one’s home, the Jewish homeowner does not carry liability.] Nonetheless, since it appears as if the Jew has accepted to store the gentiles Chametz in his home and has thus accepted liability, therefore, the custom is to include as part of the sale transaction, the renting of the rooms in which the sold Chametz is found, as now the Chametz is no longer in our property.[45] [Some Poskim[46], however, rule that in today’s form of Mechiras Chametz, there is some form of liability that the Jew has for the Chametz that was sold to the gentile and to counteract this issue, part of the sale transaction must include renting the rooms in which the Chametz is found in the gentile, as although we remain liable, the Chametz is not in our property.[47] However, according to the stringent opinion above who forbids to leave the insured Chametz even in a room rented to the gentile, this does not help.]

May a Jewish insurance company insure Chametz over Pesach?[48]

It is permitted for Jewish owned insurance company to insure Chametz products over Pesach so long as they have no involvement in where the Chametz is stored, and the Chametz being insured is stored either in an area owned by the owner, or in an area prearranged by the owner, without any interaction of the insurance company. Thus, a Jewish owned insurance company may continue to insure the Chametz of a company, or supermarket, if the Chametz is kept in the warehouses of the company/supermarket. This applies whether the owner of the Chametz is Jewish or gentile, and even if the Jewish owner does not plan to sell his Chametz before Pesach.[49]

 

May a Jewish storage company hold Chametz over Pesach?

A Jewish owned storage company may not allow any Chametz products to remain within their storage if they provide any type of insurance to the items found in the storage. This includes even if they only have liability in a case of negligence. [Some storage companies may be defined as a Shomer Sachar, and are hence automatically Halachically held fully liable for the items found in the storage.[50]] The only option they have is to sell their company [and its insurance coverage] to a gentile over Pesach. Alternatively, they are to make a legal arrangement that they are not held legally responsible for liability of the items in the storage, even due to negligence, and all the liability is rather provided by an external insurance company, of which the clients pay on their own. [It, however, does not help to contract an external insurance company to insure the Chametz, if legally the storage owners are also able to be held liable, such as if they were negligent in guarding the Chametz.] A final option would be to stipulate in the contract that the storage company’s liability, even in case of negligence, is limited to only non-food items, and thus have Chametz items automatically excluded from any and all forms of liability.

May a Jewish shipping company ship Chametz over Pesach?

This matter poses several Halachic issues, which include liability over the Chametz and doing business on Pesach with Chametz.[51] The best option they have to avoid all these issues, is to sell their company [and its insurance coverage] to a gentile over Pesach.

May a Jew deliver a Chametz package for a gentile on Pesach?

If the Jew will be held liable if he is negligent and causes loss or damage to the product, it is Biblically forbidden for him to deliver it. This is aside for other prohibitions involved as explained in Halacha 11 in Q&A!

Purchasing Chametz before Pesach and leaving it in the Jewish owned store to pick up after Pesach:

It is forbidden for one to purchase a Chametz product before Pesach from a Jewish owned store, and have it set aside for pick up after Pesach even if one performs Mechiras Chametz, if the Jewish storeowner retains liability over the Chametz. Thus, one should not purchase duty free alcohol in a store prior to Pesach and leave it in the store to pick up after Pesach by one’s return trip, if the store retains liability over the Chametz alcohol if damages occur. This applies even if one includes the alcohol in Mechiras Chametz. Under normal circumstances, however, the Mechiras Chametz removes liability from the owner of the property in which the Chametz is stored, as explained above. See Chapter 17 Halacha 2!

 

The verses from where the above is derived:

Lo yeirahe…..bigvulcha:[52] This verse teaches us that one cannot own Chametz and have it left in an area that one owns, even if the area is not in one’s house. This includes even an area which one has rented or borrowed. Thus, if the Chametz was placed in someone else’s house for him to guard and he had that area where the Chametz is staying lent to him, it is Biblically forbidden to own this Chametz over Pesach.

Lo yiraeh Licha:[53] This verse teaches us that that Chametz which is un-owned, or Chametz which is Hekdish, or Chametz that belongs to a gentile, may Biblically be left in one’s property over Pesach.

Lo Yimatzei Bivateichem: This verse teaches us that it is forbidden to own Chametz even if it is placed in an area which is out of sight. Thus, one cannot hide the Chametz in his pit.[54] The lack of the word “Lachem” by “Lo Yimatzeh” teaches us that even if a certain Chametz does not belong to a Jew, but he has liability over that Chametz, then if the Chametz is within his property [Bivateichem], he is nevertheless Biblically forbidden in having this Chametz over Pesach.[55]

Gvulcha/Bivateichem:[56] This verse teaches us that Chametz which one owns, or has liability over, is only forbidden to be left in property which one owns or has borrowed, however, if it is not in one’s property, then it may be left there over Pesach.

 

Does one transgress both commands of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh upon owning Chametz?[57]

Yes. One who owns Chametz in a forbidden way always transgresses both negative commands.

 

The definition of ownership-The amount of Chametz prohibited to be owned:[58]

Biblically: It is Biblically forbidden to own a piece of Chametz that is a Kezayis in size. If the piece of Chametz is less than Kezayis in size, it is Biblically permitted to be owned.[59]

Rabbinically:[60] Although a piece of Chametz which is less than a Kezayis in size, is Biblically permitted to be owned, nevertheless, it is Rabbinically forbidden to be owned.[61] This applies even if one nullified it before Pesach.[62] However, if the piece less Kezayis piece was nullified before Pesach and is dirty to the point that it is not fit for eating, then it does not need to be destroyed.[63] Likewise, if the less than Kezayis nullified piece is stuck onto a wall or vessel, then it does not need to be destroyed, so long as within the entire room or vessel there isn’t a kezayis amount of scattered Chametz.[64]

Kernels of grain:[65] A Kezayis worth of Chametz kernels [and possibly even Chametz flour[66]] which are piled together, is judged as a Kezayis and is under a Biblical owning prohibition, even though the kernels [and flour] is not actually attached to each other.[67] [However, less than a Kezayis of Chametz grains is only Rabbinically forbidden to be owned.]

Taaruvos Chametz: See next!

Chametz vessels:[68] Clean Chametz vessels are permitted to be owned over Pesach even though they contain Chametz absorbed within their walls.[69]

The types of Chametz prohibited to be owned:

Taaruvos Chametz-food products: Mixtures of food that contain Chametz, at times contain a Biblical owning prohibition, at times a Rabbinical owning prohibition, and at times is permitted to be owned, as explained in Halacha 1H!

Taaruvos Chametz by non-food products: All non-food products that contain Chametz ingredients which have disintegrated into the product, are permitted to be owned and benefited from over Pesach. See Chapter 6 Halacha 4 for the full details of this subject!

Owning spoiled, inedible, Chametz: Chametz that became inedible even for dogs, before the 6th hour on Erev Pesach, is permitted to be owned, as explained in Halacha 1G!

Owning Matzah Ashira; Chametz Nuksha; etc: See Halacha 1E-F!

 

When does the prohibition against owning Chametz begin to apply?

The negative command of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh:[70] One only begins to transgress the negative commands of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh from the night of the 15th of Nissan and onwards.[71] [Accordingly, the negative command against owning Chametz only begins to apply the night of Pesach, the night of the 15th. Nonetheless, the positive command of destroying Chametz, and its consequential prohibition against owning it, begins on Erev Pesach, as explained next.]

Tashbisu-Destroying the Chametz from midday and onwards on Erev Pesach?[72] Although one does not transgress a negative command when owning Chametz prior to the night of the 15th, nevertheless, [he is Biblically obligated due to a positive command, to destroy all Chametz from his home] from midday of the 14th and onwards. If he did not destroy his Chametz [at that time], then he transgresses the positive command for every moment thereon.[73] See next Halacha for further details!

The Rabbinical time of prohibition-From the 5th hour of Erev Pesach:[74] Although Biblically the prohibition to own Chametz only begin from the end of the 6th hour, nevertheless, the sages added one more hour towards the owning prohibition.[75] In the next Halacha we will explain when the Chametz is to be destroyed and hence no longer owned; before the arrival of the 6th hour, or after it begins.

 

Summary:

It is Rabbinically forbidden to own Chametz beginning from the 6th hour of the day on Erev Pesach. It is Biblically forbidden to own Chametz beginning from the 7th hour of the day on Erev Pesach, due to the positive command of Tashbisu. On the night of Pesach, the Biblical negative command against owning Chametz [Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh] begins.

 

Q&A

If a person has traveled to a different time zone for Pesach, by when must his Chametz in his home town be destroyed?  

It is disputed amongst Poskim whether one goes after the area that the Chametz is in or whether one goes after the time zone of the area that he is in. See Chapter 5 Halacha 3 for the full details of this matter!

 

 

Transgresses at every moment:

Beginning from the 7th hour of the day on Erev Pesach, one transgresses a Biblical positive command every moment of which he possesses Chametz from there on, and is not involved in destroying it.[76] So too Rabbinically, beginning from the 6th hour of the day on Erev Pesach, one transgresses a Rabbinical positive command every moment of which he possesses Chametz from there on and is not involved in destroying it.[77] Likewise, beginning from the night of Pesach and onwards, one who delays destroying his Chametz transgresses the Biblical negative commands of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh at every moment.[78]

How does one disown the Chametz:

Chametz can be disowned in many ways, such as 1) Selling it; 2) Throwing it into public property; 3) Declaring it Hefker or Batul; 4) Destroying it. Some of these methods are only Biblically valid, while others are not valid at all. The details of the validity of these methods, which one is preferred, and when and how they work, will be discussed in Halacha 6-8!

Owning Chametz for medical reasons:[79]

It is permitted [and an obligation] to purchase and eat Chametz on Pesach for the sake of saving a life. This matter will be discussed in chapter 6 Halacha 5-See there!

 

General Summary

One transgresses the Biblical owning prohibition if all the following conditions are fulfilled:

1.       One owns the Chametz [has not disowned or performed Hefker before the 6th hour], or has liability over it.

2.       The Chametz is within one’s personal property, or property that he has borrowed or rented.

3.       The Chametz is more than a Kezayis.

 

The Rabbinical owning prohibition applies in the following cases:

1.       The Chametz is less than a Kezayis

2.       If one does not own the Chametz and does not contain liability over it, it is Biblically permitted to have the Chametz remain in one’s home over Pesach, although Rabbinically, it is forbidden to have such Chametz in one’s home, unless one of the exceptions mentioned next apply.

 

The cases in which the owning prohibition does not apply even Rabbinically:

1.       The Chametz was disowned and placed in a public for all area. [See Halacha 8]

2.       The Chametz in one’s home belongs to a gentile, and one made a Mechitza in front of it.

3.       The Chametz was nullified before Pesach, is less than a Kezayis and is dirty.

Q&A

What is one to do if he ordered Chametz before Pesach and it did not yet arrive to his home?

If one performed Halachic acquisition on this Chametz, then he must sell his Chametz to a gentile before Pesach, as is normally done today through the community Rav.

If one purchased an airplane ticket for after Pesach, is it considered that he owns the Chametz food that comes with his meal?

Some[80] write that at the time of the purchase one is to stipulate that he has no intent to purchase the Chametz meals

 

 

 

May one rent a home or hotel room which was not cleaned for Chametz if he will arrive in middle of Pesach?

See Chapter 3 Halacha 13 in Q&A!

If one picked up Chametz on Pesach, is it considered as if he acquired it?[81]

One who picks up unowned Chametz on Pesach is considered to have acquired it and transgresses the Biblical prohibition of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh. This possibly applies even if he has no intent to acquire the Chametz, such as he is picking it up for the sake of throwing it out, nevertheless, some Poskim[82] rule that he possibly acquires it. Accordingly, one who picked up unowned [i.e. Hefker] Chametz on Pesach, must immediately burn it, or destroy it in one of the other valid methods.

 

What is one to do if he purchased Chametz on Pesach?

One who purchased/acquired Chametz on Pesach, whether purposely or accidently, is required to immediately destroy the Chametz through one of the valid methods of destruction, as explained in Halacha 6B.

 

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[1] Admur 433:12; Rashi; Ran; Pri Chadash

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that that even if one did not check his house, and did not nullify his Chametz, he does not retroactively transgress Baal Yiraeh when he finds Chametz on Pesach, and any Chametz which he did not find on Pesach he does not transgress at all, as the Torah only prohibits one from owning known Chametz. [Opinion in Admur 467:4; M”A 434:5, in his understanding of Rambam and Rosh, brought in Kuntrus Achron 433:3] Although Admur 433:12 and Kuntrus Achron ibid clearly negates this opinion, in 467:4 he joins it for a lenient ruling

[2] See Halacha 7-8, and Chapter 3 for the full details of this matter!

[3] Admur 431:2; 440:2 regarding Chametz of gentile

[4] Admur 445:1

[5] Admur 431:3

[6] Admur 442:28

[7] Admur 440:2 and 8

[8] Admur 440:9-16; See C below!

[9] Admur 440:5 and 8; See Halacha 10 and Chapter 5 Halacha 5!

The reason: The Mechitza serves as a Heker/reminder, so he not come to forget about the prohibition of eating Chametz, and not come to using it. [Admur 440:5]

The reason it does not help to place the Chametz behind a Mechitza by disowned Chametz: The reason the Sages allowed one to place the Chametz of a gentile behind a Mechitza, even though one who disowns Chametz must destroy it completely from the home, is because by a gentile’s Chametz, one is more hesitant to eat from it, and thus placing it behind a Mechitza suffices. However, by Chametz of Hefker, that was disowned, one is not hesitant to eat from it even if a Mechitza is placed. [Admur in gloss on Kuntrus Achron 440:11]

[10] Admur 440:3 and 8

[11] Admur 443:6; See also Admur 436:3

[12] The reason: One must destroy his friends Chametz in order so his friend not transgress Baal Yimatzei, as all Jews are cosigners/guarantors for [the fulfillment of Mitzvos of] all other Jews, and since here one does not know for certain that the Chametz was already sold he therefore has to destroy it, as the existence of Chametz is certain. [Admur ibid and 436:3] If the Jew has liability over the Chametz, then he is obligated to destroy it in his own right, so he does not transgress Baal Yiraeh, as explained in Chapter 3 Halacha 5C!

[13] Admur 441:1

The reason: It is learned from a Gzeiras Hakasuv that a Mashkon automatically becomes the property of the lender for all purposes, even if the borrower stipulated at the time of giving it to him that it will only become his if he does not pay back the loan. Therefore, the lender must destroy the Mashkon before Pesach [even though that upon doing so he loses his loan, as explained in chapter 443:8]. [Admur ibid]

[14] Admur 441:10-12

In which circumstances is the collateral considered owned by the Jew? In general, a Mashkon of a gentile is not considered the property of the Jew even if he did an acquisition on the Chametz and brought it into his home. However, if when the gentile delivered the Mashkon to the Jew, he told him that if he does not pay him back by a certain date [after Pesach] then it will retroactively be considered his, then if the Jew did a form of acquisition on the Chametz, it is possible that the Jew will retroactively transgress the owning prohibition. Accordingly, the Jew must destroy it before Pesach. [Admur 441:10] If the Jew did not destroy the Chametz before Pesach and the gentile comes to pay him back with cash for the loan, then the Jew may accept the money and the Chametz may be returned to the gentile, being that the Chametz was never considered to belong to the Jew. [Admur 441:11] The above, however, only applies if the Jew did a form of acquisition on the Chametz Mashkon. If, however, no acquisition was made and the Mashkon remained in the gentile’s house, then even if the gentile told him the above stipulation, the Chametz does not need to be destroyed. The reason for this is because without a form of acquisition, the Chametz cannot retroactively transfer to the Jews ownership, as by a gentile, the giving of money alone does not suffice to make an acquisition. [Admur 441:12]

[15] Admur 441:14 [Vetzaruch Iyun how this does not contradict Admur 441:12]

[16] Admur 441:2

In which circumstances is the collateral considered owned by the Jew? In general, a Mashkon that was give by a Jew to a gentile is considered the property of the Jew even if the gentile did an acquisition on the Chametz and brought it into his home. However, if when the Jew delivered the Mashkon to the gentile, he told him that if he does not pay him back by a certain date [after Pesach] then it will retroactively be considered his, then if the gentile did a form of acquisition on the Chametz, and the Jew does not plan to pay back the gentile, then he is not obligated to destroy it before Pesach. [Admur 441:2] If after Pesach the Jew did pay back the gentile, then he is considered to have retroactively owned the Chametz during Pesach and it is forbidden in benefit. [Admur 441:3] If the Jew did not make the above stipulation that the Chametz would retroactively belong to the gentile if he does not pay him by the set date, then the Chametz is considered the Jew’s, and must be destroyed by him before Pesach. This applies even if the due date arrived before Pesach, so long as the gentile has yet to make an acquisition on the Chametz. [See Admur 441:4-7 for a dispute on this matter in a case that the Mashkon is of equal worth to the loan]

[17] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 440:1

[18] Cheishev Haeifod 1:82 in name of Tchebiner Rav based on Mahariy Levi 2:124

[19] Minchas Yitzchak 3:1; 7:26; Moadim Uzmanim 3:269

[20] Heard from Harav Yaakov Yosef za”l

The reason: As all businesses today separate money from one’s salary which goes to a pension fund, and the money of that fund may be used to purchase Chametz stocks, in one’s name. Now, since according to law the husband has no access to that money, and even in case of divorce, he may not be able to have access to her funds, therefore it is considered under her ownership, and must be sold by her. Certainly, if she began working, and receiving a pension fund, prior to the marriage, then she retains the legal rights over it.

[21] Minchas Yitzchak 3:1; Piskeiy Teshuvos 440:1

[22] The reason for this is because the money given to the bank or firm is considered a loan, and hence it is the bank/firm who have purchased stocks or partnership into the invested companies, and not the original person who gave them the money. [Minchas Yitzchak ibid]

[23] Admur 440:1

[24] Admur 433:30

[25] Admur 436:6

[26] Admur 440:1; 445:1-2; Furthermore, it can be learned from 436:20 that even Rabbinically one does not transgress, as when placed in a public area there is no greater form of disowning then this, and the sages did not decree in such a situation. However, Tzaruch Iyun from 445:1 which implies that one must also be Mafkir it. Whatever the case, it is forbidden for him to retake his Chametz after Pesach. [See Admur 448:29]

[27] In 436:20 Admur rules explicitly that he is obligated to destroy the Chametz, see there. Vetzaruch Iyun from 445:1-2 from where it’s implied that one is not even Rabbinically required to destroy it. 

[28] Admur 440:1 and 9-17

[29] Admur 440:1 and 9-17

If the Chametz belongs to a Jew: If this Chametz belongs to a Jew, then both the owner, and the Jew who is storing it in his property with liability transgress the Biblical prohibition of Baal Yiraeh Ubaal Yimatzeh. [Admur 440:1] Thus, it is possible for two people to transgress the owning prohibition on the same Chametz, just as if they are partners in the ownership.

[30] Background and Other opinions-The definition of liability: Some Poskim [Rambam Chametz 4:3] rule that one is only considered to have liability if he is legally responsible for loss and theft even if there was lack of negligence. However, if he is only responsible for loss and theft which are result of negligence, then he is not considered to have liability on the Chametz, and he may thus leave it in his house over Pesach by placing a Mechitza in front of it. [Admur 440:9] This applies even if he knows the gentile will illegally hold him liable for loss and theft even if he was not negligent. [Admur 440:10] Thus, if a legal acquisition was not made to enact this liability, such as the signing of a document or the making of an acquisition with the owner, or through other legal manners of that country, then he is not considered to have liability. [Admur 440:9-10] Other Poskim [Rashi], however, rule that if one has any type of liability over the Chametz, even if it is limited to only cases of negligence, and even if he is not legally liable but knows that the owner will illegally force him to pay for loss and damages, then it is Biblically forbidden to be in one’s home over Pesach. [Admur 440:13] Practically, one is to be stringent like the latter opinion even in a case of illegal liability, or legal liability only over negligence, and return the Chametz back to the gentile owner, or sell the Chametz to another gentile [or remove his liability from it] before the 6th hour on Erev Pesach. If the 6th hour has already arrived, and one has not done any of the above, then he is to return the Chametz to the gentile owner. If the owner is not around, then one may be lenient like the first opinion and not destroy the Chametz. Likewise, one may be lenient to benefit from this Chametz after Pesach. [Admur 440:16] 

Definition of negligence: Negligence here refers to that one was negligent in the guarding of the Chametz, and thus allowed it to get stolen or damaged. However, if one will be held liable for physically damaging the Chametz, such as eating it or destroying it, this is not called liability at all, as every person is held liable for damaging anyone’s objects, and this is called paying for damages rather than insurance. [See Admur 440:10 in gloss]

[31] The reason: As according to some opinions, one automatically carries liability due to negligence when an item is stored in one’s property [i.e. Shomer Chinam], even if the item belongs to a gentile. [Shach C.M. 66:126 and 301:3 according to Rambam Sechirus 2:3] Accordingly, one may not agree to store the Chametz of a gentile in one’s property unless he negates any liability of loss and damage. [Admur 441:14; 440:13 “But to guard for free”; Kuntrus Achron 440:13]

[32] See Admur 440:14

[33] Admur 440:12-16

Background-If the Chametz was brought to a gentile’s property: If a Jew stored the Chametz of a gentile in his property, and accepted liability over it, then if he later moves the Chametz back into the property of the gentile owner, he does not transgress owning it even Rabbinically. [Admur 440:15] If, however, he moved the Chametz into another gentile’s property, then if that gentile did not accept liability, according to all the Jew Biblically transgresses owning the Chametz even though it is no longer in his property. [Admur 440:12] The reason for this is because such property is considered borrowed to him. [See Admur 440:14] Furthermore, even if the Jew never brought the Chametz into his property, but simply arranged for it to go from the owner’s property to the property of another gentile [or Jew], then according to all he Biblically transgresses the owning prohibition, if the person storing the Chametz did not accept liability. [See Admur 440:14 that the property where he arranged for the Chametz to be stored is considered borrowed to him, and is thus considered his; See Kuntrus Achron 440:5] If, however the gentile did accept liability, then according to some Poskim it does not need to be destroyed being that it is not in his property. [Admur 440:12] Other Poskim, however, rule that it must be destroyed even in such a case [as this is still considered “Bateichem”, being that he has ability to move the Chametz around as he sees fit]. [Admur 440:13; See Kuntrus Achron 440:5] Practically, one is to be stringent like the latter opinion and return the Chametz back to the gentile owner, or sell the Chametz to another gentile [or remove his liability from it] before the 6th hour on Erev Pesach. If the 6th hour has already arrived, and one has not done any of the above, then he is to return the Chametz to the gentile owner. If the owner is not around, then one may be lenient like the first opinion and not destroy the Chametz. Likewise, one may be lenient to benefit from this Chametz after Pesach. [Admur 440:16]

[34] Admur 440:13 “And even if he rented him a room”; Rambam, as explained in Kuntrus Achron 440:8

Background and other opinions-Designating an area for the gentile’s Chametz: If one designates a corner of the home on behalf of the gentile for him to store his Chametz, then it is disputed amongst Poskim whether it may remain there during Pesach even if the Jew has liability over it. Some Poskim rule it is permitted for the Jew to tell the gentile owner that a specific area of his home has been designated to store the Chametz, and then have the gentile bring his Chametz to that designated area, and have it remain there throughout Pesach even though he has accepted liability, so long as he places a Mechitza of ten Tefach in front of the Chametz. Alternatively, the Jew can bring the Chametz to that area, if the gentile owner is supervising him do so. [Admur 440:11] Other Poskim, however, rule that even if one gives the gentile a designated spot, and even if he rents him an entire room, one is Biblically obligated to destroy it. If he has liability over it. [Admur 440:13; See Kuntrus Achron 440:5 that there is no Kinyan for renting or lending to a gentile] Practically, one is to be stringent like the latter opinion and return the Chametz back to the gentile owner, or sell the Chametz to another gentile [or remove his liability from it] before the 6th hour on Erev Pesach. If the 6th hour has already arrived, and one has not done any of the above, then he is to return the Chametz to the gentile owner. If the owner is not around, then one may be lenient like the first opinion and not destroy the Chametz. Likewise, one may be lenient to benefit from this Chametz after Pesach. [Admur 440:16] The above leniency, however, only applies if the Chametz remains in the designated area. If, however, one moved the Chametz out of the designated area, then according to all he Biblically transgresses owning it, and must either destroy it or return it back to the area designated to the gentile. [Admur 440:12]

Mechiras Chametz in today’s times: Vetzaruch Iyun based on the above, how today we allow our Chametz that we sell to remain in our homes, if we have liability of negligence. Some Poskim rule that it is for this reason that we rent them the room of the Chametz [so writes Admur in Shtar], as although we remain liable, the Chametz is not in our property. [Makor Chaim 448:9; See Seder Mechiras Chametz Levin p. 162] However, according to the stringent opinion above who forbids to leave the insured Chametz even in a room rented to the gentile, this does not help. However, in truth we carry no liability, even of negligence, as the gentile is storing his Chametz in his room, and we never agreed to accept liability. See Q&A for the sources on this matter!

[35] Admur 440:14-15

The reason: As the verse states “Lo Yimatzeh Bivateichem”, thus teaching us the one who has liability over Chametz only transgresses its ownership if it is within his property. One does not need to destroy the Chametz even Rabbinically, being that the actual Chametz is not his. [Admur ibid]

If the Chametz never entered one’s property: If one never entered the Chametz into his property, but rather gave it to a gentile [who accepted liability], then he does not need to destroy the Chametz. [Admur 440:14]

[36] Admur 440:14

The reason: As in such a case, the gentile who is storing the Chametz has not lended the area to the Jewish person who has liability, but rather to the gentile owner who has asked for the Chametz to be stored by him. [Admur ibid]

[37] Admur 440:16

[38] See Kuntrus Achron 440:11 as to how the sale is valid if the actual Chametz does not belong to him

[39] Admur in gloss on Kuntrus Achron 440:11

The reason: As the Chametz is not his to nullify.

[40] Admur ibid and 440:12 that after the 6th hour he can return the Chametz to the area designated to the gentile owner; By doing so one escapes transgressing the owning prohibition on Chametz that he has liability on, as explained in Halacha 5C, that the prohibition of liability only applies if the Chametz is in one’s property. The novelty here is that this method is valid anytime throughout Pesach, and one is not required to destroy the Chametz, as is the law by classical Chametz that one owns, in which case it must be destroyed after the 6th hour of the day!

[41] Admur 443:6-7

[42] See Admur 440:16 who permits selling the Chametz to another gentile in order to escape ownership due to liability, perhaps here too, if one includes in the Mechira any Chametz that he has liability over, then he no longer transgresses. To note that some Batei Dinim include in their Shtar Mechira that it includes also any Chametz that they have liability over. [See Piskeiy Teshuvos 440 footnote 13]

[43] See Seder Mechiras Chametz Levin p. 162

[44] Admur 448:7; M”A 448:4; Taz 448:4; Bach 448

[45] See Admur 448:7 “Nevertheless, if possible it is proper for the gentile to remove the Chametz from the property of the Jew before Pesach as otherwise it appears as if the Jew has accepted to store the gentiles Chametz in his home and has thus accepted liability of damage over it.”

[46] Makor Chaim 448:9; See however Sheiris Yehuda 8, brought in Shaar Hakolel 18 who counters this claim; Seder Mechiras Chametz Levin p. 162

[47] Makor Chaim 448:9

[48] Shearim Hametzuyanim Behalacha 114:29; Piskeiy Teshuvos 440:2

[49] As although Jewish owner is obligated to sell his Chametz to a gentile before Pesach, this does not cause another Jew who has liability on the Chametz to transgress, if the Chametz is not in his property. However, see Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid that the custom is for the insurance companies to sell the Chametz under their liability when they perform Mechiras Chametz, as is detailed in the Mechira document. Vetzaruch Iyun as for what purpose this is done, however, perhaps it’s done as a form of Zachin Leadam Shelo Befanav, to save a Jewish owner from transgression.

[50] See Michaber C.M. 303:2 and Shach C.M. 301:3 that according to the Rambam this applies even by the Chametz of a gentile regarding liability for negligence, and so rules Admur 441:14, 440:13 and Kuntrus Achron 440:6 to suspect for this opinion Lechatchila.

[51] See Halacha 11 regarding doing business with Chametz, and Q&A regarding delivering Chametz

[52] Admur 440:1

[53] Admur 431:2; 440:2

[54] Admur 440:1

[55] Admur 440:9

[56] Admur 440:1; 440:11

[57] Rambam Chametz 1:2-3; It is implied from Admur 440:1 that whenever one transgresses the prohibition of owning Chametz, one transgresses both prohibitions, even if the Chametz is not seen, or it is not in his house. However, there are Halachas where Admur rules that one only transgresses Baal Yimatzei. See Kuntrus Achron 446:2 where Admur states “According to some opinions Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh are two negative commands over the same transgression.” Vetzaruch Iyun

[58] Admur 442:28; Kuntrus Achron 442:17; M”A 444:14; Chok Yaakov 444:15; Chacham Tzevi 86; Beis Hilel in Mishneh Beitza 2a

[59] The reason: As the verse states “Lo Sochal Alav Chametz…Velo Yeraeh Lecha Seor.” From here the sages learn that just like regarding prohibition of eating Chametz there is a minimal measurement of a kezayis [for the penalty of kareis], so too regarding the prohibition of owning Chametz, it is only prohibited if one owns a Kezayis. [Admur ibid] The reason we do not Biblically prohibit it due to Chetzi Shiur, is because the rule of Chetzi Shiur only applies by eating prohibitions. [Implication of Admur ibid; Chacham Tzevi 86, brought in Admur Kuntrus Achron 442:17] This applies even according to the Rambam and Michaber ibid. [Kuntrus Achron ibid]

[60] Admur 442:28; 446:3-4; Kuntrus Achron 442:16-17; Michaber 442:8; Rambam 2:16

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule it is permitted even Rabbinically to own less than a Kezayis of Chametz even if it was not nullfied. [Admur Kuntrus Achron 442:8 in understanding of: Abayey in Pesachim 45a; Riy in Tosafos ibid; Rosh 3:2; Tur 442 in name of Rosh; Peri Chadash 442:7; Teurmos Hadeshen 2:164; Ramban; Ran] However, the M”A 442:12 [brought in Admur 446:3] understands them to only permit owning nullified Chametz that is less than a Kezayis. Admur in Kuntrus Achron ibid negates his understanding

[61] The reason: The Sages forbade one from owning even less than a Kezayis, due to worry that it may lead one to own a Kezayis. [Admur 442:28]

[62] Admur 442:28; 446:3; See Chapter 3 Halacha 2 for the full details of this matter

The reason: The reason one needs to destroy the Chametz even if he had already nullified it, is because [otherwise] perhaps he will forget and come to eat it. [Admur 442:28] It, however, is not prohibited due to a Rabbinical Baal Yiraeh prohibition [as if it was already nullified it would be a double Dirabanan, which is a decree upon a decree]. [Kuntrus Achron 446:1] Due to this, one does not say a blessing of Bedikas Chametz if one only has suspicion that less than a Kezayis of Chametz has remained to be checked for. [Admur 432:5] Likewise, when burning less than a Kezayis of nullified Chametz on Pesach, a blessing may never be said. [Admur 446:3; Kuntrus Achron 446:1]

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule it is permitted even Rabbinically to own less than a Kezayis of Chametz which has been nullified before Pesach. [Opinion brought in Admur 446:3; M”A 442:12 in his understanding of: Abayey in Pesachim 45a; Riy in Tosafos ibid; Rosh 3:2; Tur 442 in name of Rosh; Peri Chadash 442:7]

[63] Admur 442:28; M”A 442:10; Yireim 301; Hagahos Maimanis 2:15 Taf; Vetzaruch Iyun if one finds a less than a Kezayis piece of Chametz which was nullified, if it sufficed for one to dirty it to the point that people will not come to eat it, or to simply throw it out of one’s house on Pesach.

The reason: As less than a Kezayis of nullified Chametz is not prohibited due to a Rabbinical owning prohibition of Baal Yiraeh, but rather simply due to worry that one may come to eat it. Now, since when the Chametz is dirty there is no need to suspect that one will come to eat it, therefore, there is no need to get rid of it. [See Admur Kuntrus Achron 446:1]

Must one actively nullify a less than Kezayis piece? All insignificant size crumbs of baked Chametz which are less than a Kezayis is considered automatically nullified, and thus it is not necessary to actively nullify it before Pesach. However, a significant size crumb of baked Chametz even if less than a Kezayis is not considered automatically nullified, and thus must actively be nullified before Pesach. [See Admur 434:6; 460:5] A piece of dough is considered significant and must be actively nullified before Pesach. [Admur ibid]

[64] Admur 442:28; See Chapter 3 Halacha 4!

[65] Admur Kuntrus Achron 442:18

[66] Admur ibid does not discuss flour, although in his discussion of dough he states that even if the kernels of flour are not considered attached according to Halacha, such as one kneaded them with fruit juice, nonetheless, it is considered a Kezayis, as we follow the eyes of people regarding this matter. Hence seemingly a Kezayis of flour is also viewed as a Kezayis and not as individual specs. Vetzaruch Iyun.

[67] The reason: As we follow the eyes of people regarding whether an item is considered attached and viewed as Chashuv. [Admur ibid]

[68] Admur 447:3

[69] The reason: The Chametz taste that is absorbed in the pots [is not prohibited in ownership] being that it is not considered “found/matzuiy”, and thus one does not transgress Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzei upon owning it. Thus, one is allowed to own them throughout Pesach, as the sages were not worried that if one were to be allowed to own it then he may forget and come to cook in it on Pesach. However, they did decree against owning Chametz foods [that were nullified] due to worry that one may come to eat it. [Admur ibid]

[70] Admur 431:1; Admur Kuntrus Achron 432:1 in name of Rambam; Raavad; Kesef Mishneh; Maggid Mishneh; M”A and Chok Yaakov; M”B 443:1 in name of Poskim ibid and Maharam Baruch

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule one begins to transgress the prohibition of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimatzeh from midday of Erev Pesach. [Rosh, brought in Admur Kuntrus Achron 432:1; Shaar Hatziyon 443:2 in name of Rashi, Rabbeinu Chananel; Ittur]

[71] The reason: As the verse states “For seven days yeast shall not be found in your home,…and you shall not see yeast in all your property for seven days”. [Thus, we learn from the verse that] prior to the 7 days, one does not transgress a negative command if he owned Chametz in his house. [Admur ibid]

[72] Admur 431:1

[73] The source to destroy on the 14th: This is learned from the verse “Seven days you shall eat matzos, although from the 1st day you should destroy [Tashbisu] the Chametz from your homes”. The oral Torah teaches that the “1st day” in this verse refers to the 14th of Nissan, and [when it] is called the first day of the seven days of Pesach, it means to say that it is prior to the seven days. Accordingly, the verse intends to say that Matzahs are to be eaten for the 7 days, [although] the Chametz is to already be destroyed the day before the seven days.

The proof to destroy from midday: A proof to this matter [and the fact that only from midday of the 14th must it be destroyed] is learned from the verse which says, “You shall not slaughter over the Chametz the blood of the sacrifice”, which means to say that one may not slaughter the Pesach sacrifice while one still owns Chametz. Now, the time for the Pesach sacrifice [begins] from midday of the 14th and onwards, thus from this [above verse] you learn that the time for destroying the Chametz is at the time of the Pesach sacrifice, which is from midday of the 14th and onwards.

[74] Admur 443:1

[75] The reason: In order to prevent one from transgressing if he gets mixed up on a cloudy day and comes to think that midday is really an hour later than its true time. [Admur ibid]

[76] Admur 431:1; 440:1; 444:16; 445:1; M”A 444:11

[77] Admur 440:1; 445:1

[78] Admur 446:5; Implication of Admur 434:6 “He may delay destroying it and on this delay he transgresses”

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule one does not transgress Baal Yiraeh at all if he plans to destroy the Chametz later on, even if he delays destroying it. [M”A 446:2, brought in Kuntrus Achron 446:2]

[79] Admur 450:24-26; 466:5 regarding owning and benefit; Rambam Yesodei Hatorah 5:6;

[80] Piskeiy Teshuvos 450:2*

[81] Rivash 401; Biur Halacha 446 “Biveiso”

[82] Rivash ibid clearly states that he does not acquire it if he does not have intent to do so, however see Machaneh Efraim Hilchos Kinyan Meshicha 4 that Biblically one can acquire an item by picking it up even if he does not want it. See Kinyan Torah 5:43; See Admur 448:3 regarding Kinyan Chatzer that it does not work against one’s will

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