The practice of selling chametz to remove it from Jewish ownership on Pesach has gone through four historical stages, according to R. Shlomo Yosef Zevin in his remarkably accessible book, Ha-Mo’adim Ba-Halakhah (Pesach, ch.4). We may be witnessing the development of a fifth. The first stage was individuals permanently selling their chametz to gentiles; the second was selling and then repurchasing it after the holiday; the third was, additionally, selling it without removing it from the Jew’s house; and the fourth was authorizing a rabbi to conduct the entire sale and repurchase on behalf of the community. Each stage was controversial but took hold with the support of major halakhic authorities. The fourth stage — the communal sale by the rabbi — was extremely controversial because the farther an individual Jew is removed from the sale, the more of a formality and less of a true transfer the sale can become. If you are not even selling the chametz directly to a gentile, there is a greater chance you may not really intend to sell it and are you just performing a ritual.

Cyber-Selling Chametz

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I. Four Stages of Selling Chametz

The practice of selling chametz to remove it from Jewish ownership on Pesach has gone through four historical stages, according to R. Shlomo Yosef Zevin in his remarkably accessible book, Ha-Mo’adim Ba-Halakhah (Pesach, ch.4). We may be witnessing the development of a fifth. The first stage was individuals permanently selling their chametz to gentiles; the second was selling and then repurchasing it after the holiday; the third was, additionally, selling it without removing it from the Jew’s house; and the fourth was authorizing a rabbi to conduct the entire sale and repurchase on behalf of the community. Each stage was controversial but took hold with the support of major halakhic authorities.

The fourth stage — the communal sale by the rabbi — was extremely controversial because the farther an individual Jew is removed from the sale, the more of a formality and less of a true transfer the sale can become. If you are not even selling the chametz directly to a gentile, there is a greater chance you may not really intend to sell it and are you just performing a ritual.

II. Distance and Sales

Selling one’s chametz is a loophole — a ha’aramah — which like an eruv can only function within rabbinic prohibitions, not biblically proscribed food (or carrying). Some contend that the recitation of the bitul formula, nullifying all chametz in your possession, satisifies the biblical requirement and thereby allows the sale. Others only allow the sale of chametz mixtures that are rabbinically forbidden.

Despite the rabbinic rather than biblical context, authorities require the seller to utilize multiple forms of property transfer and specially worded contracts when food is not transferred from the Jew’s property (see Sha’arei Teshuvah 448:5). The complexity of the transaction demands expertise — hence the development of a communal sale by a rabbi. While this further distances the seller from the transaction, the benefit gained by having an expert seller conduct the procedure takes precedence.

In the fourth stage of sales, which has dominated for over a century, individuals appoint a rabbi as an agent to sell the chametz. Each individual is technically the seller but the rabbi serves as an agent for many people and conducts one communal sale on behalf of all those who appointed him.

III. Click and Sell

Over the past decade, we have witnessed a new development — internet sales of chametz. This entails the seller entering address and other information on a web form and clicking on a button to appoint a rabbi — sometimes unspecified — as an agent to sell chametz. Without seeing or even speaking to the rabbi performing the sale, the seller is even further removed from the transaction. Does this work?

Technically, one may appoint an agent merely by stating that you are appointing him (Shulchan Arukh, Choshen Mishpat 182:1). However, the Rambam (Mishneh Torah, Hilkhos Mekhirah 5:12-13) records a custom to solidify an appointment of an agent by making a kinyan sudar, performing a symbolic act of acquisition which demonstrates the transfer of authority. In this way, the Rambam says, you make clear that you truly want to appoint this agent to act on your behalf:

נהגו רוב המקומות להקנות למקצת אלו הדברים או כיוצא באלו ואומרים וקנינו מפלוני שעשה פלוני שליח… קנינו זה שנהגו להקנות באלו הדברים אינו מועיל כלום אלא להודיע שאינו אומר דברים אלו כמשחק ומהתל אלא שגמר בלבו ואחר כך אמר. לפיכך אם אמר בלב שלם אני אמרתי וגמרתי דבר זה אין צריך דבר אחר כלל.

The custom in most places is to make a kinyan from some of these things or the similar and we say he made a kinyan from this person and appointed him an agent… This kinyan that is the custom does not affect anything except making known that he is not saying it as a joke but made a firm decision and afterward said [that he appoints someone as an agent]. Therefore, if he says “I wholeheartedly said and decided this” he does not need anything else.

We normally follow this custom only when appointing a rabbi as an agent to sell chametz, not when otherwise appointing an agent. When the seller signs a document appointing an agent, some consider this kinyan unnecessary (She’arim Metzuyanim Ba-Halakhah 114:8 kuntres acharon), others a stringency (She’eilas Shlomo 4:111), but others — most notably R. Soloveitchik — consider it an established custom (Nefesh Ha-Rav p. 179; see Nitei Gavriel, Hilkhos Pesach, vol. 1 38:1). Presumably, this custom arose because of the danger inherent in the distance of the seller from the actual sale. When it comes to chametz, even if only rabbinically forbidden, we try to strengthen the agency and minimize the risk of the sale becoming a mere ritual.

IV. Long Distance Sales

Authorities of the past have allowed appointment of a rabbi to sell chametz over the phone, when necessary (Piskei Teshuvos ch. 448 n. 72 in the name of R. Yosef Shalom Elyashiv; I have heard similar in the name of R. Yosef Eliyahu Henkin; and see further in the name of R. Soloveitchik). The custom of making a kinyan sudar can be set aside under extenuating circumstances. R. Joseph B. Soloveitchik (Nefesh Ha-Rav, ibid.) recommended that, in keeping with the Rambam’s words, the telephoner should state that he appoints the rabbi “wholeheartedly”. This fulfills the custom without the in-person kinyan sudar.

Sales on the internet further remove the seller from the transaction and provide convenience but no halakhic benefit. Additionally, these sales do not allow for the custom of making a kinyan sudar. For these reasons, it seems to me that these sales are not optimal. They work but should be a last resort.

If you cannot appoint a rabbi as an agent in person or over the phone, only then should you appoint a rabbi as your agent via the internet. That rabbi should preferably identify himself on the webpage and include a checkbox specifying that the seller appoints the rabbi “wholeheartedly” (while many people perfunctorily click on checkboxes, it seems to me that it will add a little to the transaction).

Is this the start of a new method? Will the internet change the sale of chametz like it has changed so much else? In this case, I think it will only be to the detriment of the user, who will increase the risk of turning a religously-motivated transaction into a perfunctory, religious ritual. When your role in selling your chametz is reduced to fifteen seconds and click, it will be a less serious exercise.

Slightly adapted from this post: link

About Gil Student

Rabbi Gil Student is the founder, publisher and editor-in-chief of Torah Musings.

43 comments

  1. “will increase the risk of turning a religously-motivated transaction into a perfunctory, religious ritual. When your role in selling your chametz is reduced to fifteen seconds and click, it will be a less serious exercise”

    on the way out of shul tonight i stopped by the rabbi’s shtender, scribbled my name and address and did the kinyan. took less than 15 seconds

    i don’t see how doing it over the internet makes mechiras chametz less of a serious exercise than this.

  2. The ultimate test should find itself simply in whether the person is serious or not about the sale. If the chametz buyer were to walk into your house and start eating up your chametz, would you stop him, yes or no? There are many people who, I am certain, do not treat this sale as being real in the first place and they would stop him, showing already the whole ritual is not taken seriously, despite signing a contract with the Rabbi and doing the kinyan.

    The fact that they sent an email/letter to a rabbi to sell their chametz instead of using the phone or in person meeting would not really be the significant detail here. There’s no reason to bend over backwards to relegate it to the realm of shaas hadachak if the original way doesn’t actually work any better.

  3. The Rambam writes that the kinyan sudar is customary. Nowadays, consumers routinely make purchases over the internet. Clicking a button is minhag socharim and legal al pi dina demalchusa. Therefore, why should clicking a button be any less optimal than the kinyan sudar of old? Your concern seems to be that the purchaser should take the transaction seriously. Why should an internet transaction be less serious when people part with thousands of dollars online at the click of a button?

  4. See R. Shlomo Aviner’s and Rav Elyakim Levanon’s letters approving online appointment of a shaliach to sell chametz (in Israel):
    http://www.kipa.co.il/passover/sell.asp
    You can even watch a video of the sale procedure, and see a picture of the fellow they sell the chametz to. This makes the sale process more real to me, not more distant.

  5. Great post. It should be noted that the Chazon Ish did not do a kinyan sudar when selling chametz (see Orchos Rabbeinu, Mechiras Chametz 1).

  6. Why don’t we say “devarim shebalev einam devarim” with regard to people who may not take the sale seriously? You signed a contract, what gives you the right to say “oh, I didn’t mean it”?

    What I see as more of a threat to the validity of the sale is the unclearness, even among knowledgeable people and rabbis, about the mechanism of the sale. At the end of the holiday do you buy the chametz back, or is the original sale cancelled, and how does all of this formally take place?

  7. “At the end of the holiday do you buy the chametz back, or is the original sale cancelled, and how does all of this formally take place?”
    I have witnessed the scenario and typically the Rabbi and the goy meet just after YomTov andthe Rabbi asks the goy to settle up terms -the goy states he has second thoughts and does notwish to go through with the sale-doesn’t want to/doesn’t have money to pay FMV. Deal cancelled-goy returns shtar to Rabbi all completed often right after Maariv.
    For what its worth since the Mycroft residence doesn’t have liquor we get rid of our chametz and don’t “sell” it.

  8. “Why don’t we say “devarim shebalev einam devarim” with regard to people who may not take the sale seriously? You signed a contract, what gives you the right to say “oh, I didn’t mean it”?”
    The contract involves a non Jew and would not be enforceable against him in secular law. It is considered in secular law some religious mumbo jumbo to premit Jews to keep chametz overPesach. Neither party expects that there is a sale-the Jewish owners nor the Goy neither believe it is a sale.

  9. “Sales on the internet further remove the seller from the transaction and provide convenience but no halakhic benefit.”

    you neglect to clarify how internet is any different from telephone. while it is clear that kinyan sudar is not possible through the web, how is checking the “wholeheartedly” box any less binding then saying the words through the phone? btw, the phone conversation may take less than 15 seconds too.

  10. The issue of the gravitas of the sale has been arounfd for years, iirc R’YSE added some language to the document to reinforce this. IMHO the internet concern is more a metahalachic one than a microhalachic one
    KT

  11. Abba’s Rantings: i don’t see how doing it over the internet makes mechiras chametz less of a serious exercise than this.

    hubscubs: you neglect to clarify how internet is any different from telephone

    You are right and I apologize for not being explicit. My assumption is that the less interpersonal contact for an otherwise equivalent exercise, the less distance between the seller and the agent. Face-to-face is better than on the telephone, which is better than on the internet. But this is beside the point. The custom is to do a kinyan sudar. Absent that, R. Soloveitchik recommended saying that you are doing it wholeheartedly.

    HaDardai: The Rambam writes that the kinyan sudar is customary. Nowadays, consumers routinely make purchases over the internet. Clicking a button is minhag socharim and legal al pi dina demalchusa. Therefore, why should clicking a button be any less optimal than the kinyan sudar of old?

    But the custom is still to do a kinyan sudar, even though you are signing a contact. People make billion dollar deals by just signing a contract but we still do a kinyan sudar.

    See R. Shlomo Aviner’s and Rav Elyakim Levanon’s letters approving online appointment of a shaliach to sell chametz (in Israel)

    R. Aviner’s approbation is hardly overwhelming.

    J: It should be noted that the Chazon Ish did not do a kinyan sudar when selling chametz (see Orchos Rabbeinu, Mechiras Chametz 1)

    Reportedly. I’ve learned to be skeptical of reports about the Chazon Ish.

    Joel Rich: IMHO the internet concern is more a metahalachic one than a microhalachic one

    Not according to RYBS

  12. Steve Brizel

    Great post-as Mycroft hinted-RYBS and RMF disagreed as to whether a standard meciras chametz could be used to sell Chametz Gamur or to sell the Chametz in a Jewishly owned supermarket chain.

  13. What possible reason would R. Horowitz, the author of Orchos Rabbeinu, who was the Rosh Yeshiva of the yeshiva the CI founded, R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach’s brother in law, a noted talmid chacham in his own right and a ‘ben-bayis’ of the Steipler, have for not reporting the CI’s practices during mechiras chametz correctly?

  14. When your role in selling your chametz is reduced to fifteen seconds and click, it will be a less serious exercise.
    ================================================
    This is what I meant as a metahalachic issue – IIRC some view the issue as ensuring that the seller really is selling, others that the transaction be a maaseh that represent a bona fide transaction. To the extent that the former is the issue, it’s more “meta” and doesn’t lend itself to technical corrections (e.g. doing 64 different kinyanim)
    KT

  15. I, too, have issues with selling chametz that is biblically prohibited, and therefore do not keep such chametz over Pesach. In fact, I find it strange that some very frum people keep cakes loaves, and pasta over Pesach so that they may have quick access to chametz immediately after the chag. Nontheless, selling “chametz” is a well-established minhag and provides additional income to the rav. The minhag also serves as an added safeguard lest items containing some chametz are inadvertantly put away. I, therefore, choose to participate in mechirat chametz, and would advise like-minded people to do the same.

  16. MiMedinat HaYam

    i believe its SA that says its part of the rav’s income.

    nevertheless, i see in suburban american areas, ppl dont pay the rav (its part of his salary, i guess. similar to shul / contract prohibitions of the rav taking $ for chuppa vekidushin, etc).

    2. the part about the contract must be enforceable under secular law bothers me. no one does that. (power of atty for sale of property must be notarized. no deed stamps. nyc transfer tax. other issues.) if its a lease or contract of sale (which is what it usually is, then maybe.)

    then again, other halachic contracts must also be enforceable in secular law, like a ketuba. now thats a laughable contract, as practiced today. that should be changed, but rabbonim wont do that, considering the text sacrosant (which it historically isnt.)

    a number of years ago, i visited a dayan on the badatz who does the “mechira” for the badatz. he showed me the shtar (to a christian arab from abu ghosh. the position is a “yerusha” for several generations.) with tax stamps.

    3. i mentioned in last year’s post a recommendation for a $1 fee for the online “mechira” to reinforce its seriousness.

    4. recommendation for a future post — the various contracts for a jewish owned food store open on pesach selling chametz. we may not like it, but such a shtar is done all the time, at least here in the states.

  17. when we buy and sell things with the click of a mouse (Amazon) even when we do not know the identity of the seller/buyer (eBay, Amazon Marketplace), that is a complete sale nowadays. So selling chamezt this way, while new, is similar to many of other sales and transactions we do today.

  18. Shasdaf: when we buy and sell things with the click of a mouse (Amazon) even when we do not know the identity of the seller/buyer (eBay, Amazon Marketplace), that is a complete sale nowadays. So selling chamezt this way, while new, is similar to many of other sales and transactions we do today.

    Of course that’s true but so is signing a document. Yet we still have the custom of performing a kinyan sudar.

  19. MMHY: the part about the contract must be enforceable under secular law bothers me

    Not everyone agrees that it must. Would make a good, if highly technical, post.

  20. Deal cancelled-goy returns shtar to Rabbi all completed often right after Maariv.

    Cancelled? Retroactively? Have you thought through the implications of that?

  21. I don’t want to sound snotty, but kol zman it was Chabadniks and fly-by-night types, I wouldn’t do it. Now, Tzohar is doing it, and I’m really stuck here- so we just sold it on Tzohar’s site.

  22. Where I live in Riverdale, every year on Erev Pesach I take my kids to shul (Young Israel of Riverdale) to watch R’ Willig – in the presence of at least 30 other rabbanim and many members of the community – sell all the chometz for which he was appointed agent to Mr. John Brown. I think it would be a good idea for all rabbonim to make the sale a public event in which all members of the community are invited to attend, thereby making the transaction much more tangible for everyone.

  23. shaul shapira

    “Now, Tzohar is doing it, and I’m really stuck here- so we just sold it on Tzohar’s site.”

    I guess, if they can’t perform marriages at least they can seel Chometz!

  24. It would be a terrible thing for congregants to conduct mechirat chametz only (or predominantly) online. It seems to me that in many of the large kehillos, this may be the only time of year when a congregant has “personal time” with the rav. It is an opportunity for the rav to meet the head (or co-head) of each family, exchange a few words, perhaps learn some new things about the congregant’s personal/family situation, and conduct a one-on-one ma’aseh mitzva. This phenomenon may not move or impress those of you who only see value in an experience if it has intrinsic halakhic necessity, but this modern-day experience of mechirat chametz is a core feature of our Jewish society and serves many wonderful pastoral functions. It would be a shame for it to go by the wayside. (Note — I am not a congregational rabbi, and have a close relationship with my mara d’asra throughout the year: these are just musings.)

  25. “Where I live in Riverdale, every year on Erev Pesach I take my kids to shul (Young Israel of Riverdale) to watch R’ Willig – in the presence of at least 30 other rabbanim and many members of the community – sell all the chometz for which he was appointed agent to Mr. John Brown. I think it would be a good idea for all rabbonim to make the sale a public event in which all members of the community are invited to attend, thereby making the transaction much more tangible for everyone”

    And determine if one believes that Mr. Brown is buying the chametz the same way he would be buying a car-I suspect the value of the chametz that he is buying may be worth more than his assets-often the nonJew is asuperintendent of the local synagogue-very practical-ensures he is around to both buy the chametz and to see if he wants to go through after Pesach with the sale.
    I doubt anyone belives the sale is an actual civil sale in NY law-it is at best Halachik legal fiction.

  26. anonymous 1150 was me

  27. “, but this modern-day experience of mechirat chametz is a core feature of our Jewish society ”
    “core feature” really?

  28. Rabbi Steinberg of Kew Gardens Hills does it on behalf of dozens of Queens shuls and rabbis. I used to attend every year (I think I even attended the sale back once), and then we went to an apartment building’s furnace for some good chametz burning. It’s not exactly open to the public, but anyone can come.

    I remember one year the regular buyer (Roy, who seemed to know hilchot kinyan better than most rabbonim) couldn’t make it, and they got a guy from down the block at the last minute. He was terrified. They tried their hardest to make him feel comfortable.

  29. Me: “, but this modern-day experience of mechirat chametz is a core feature of our Jewish society ”
    mycroft: “core feature” really?

    I maintain that it is, at least in the MO community. Take the commonplace Shomer Shabbos/Kashrus MO Jew, who works for a living, goes to shul on Shabbos, but does not go to shul during the week (I am not judging, just describing the phenomenon: there is a reason why daily minyanim in MO shuls are not in the main sanctuaries). Apart from keeping kosher, sending his kids to day school, and going to shul on Shabbos, his Orthodox Judaism is very much seasonal-cyclical: it for the most part imposes special obligations on him at periodic points on the calendar. For this type of MO Jew, relatively minor practices like hataras nedarim on erev R”H, mechirat chametz, or the siyyum on erev Pesach for Taanis Bechorim acquire special significance that those more immersed in the Olam Shel Halakha/Yam haTalmud may not appreciate. They are key elements of the MO Jewish lifestyle and provide anchoring points for MO Jews’ observance.

  30. “Josh on April 3, 2012 at 12:32 pm
    Me: “, but this modern-day experience of mechirat chametz is a core feature of our Jewish society ”
    mycroft: “core feature” really?

    I maintain that it is, at least in the MO community.”

    I guess I must not be MO-since I don’t sell chametz. Dos that make me chareidi? Or maybe not since the truest believers of mechiras chametz are the followers of the Chasam Sofer and certainly many skeptics of the practice are followers of the Rav?

  31. Eliezer Ben-Porat

    For more information regarding the halachic issues related to the selling of chametz on the internet, see Hadarom, Internet in Halacha [written in Hebrew, the last issue found on the RCA website]
    http://www.rabbis.org/hadarom.cfm
    and in English on the Ottawa Torah Institute website
    http://www.ottawatorah.org/mechirat_chametz.htm

  32. Mycroft wrote:

    “And determine if one believes that Mr. Brown is buying the chametz the same way he would be buying a car-I suspect the value of the chametz that he is buying may be worth more than his assets-often the nonJew is asuperintendent of the local synagogue-very practical-ensures he is around to both buy the chametz and to see if he wants to go through after Pesach with the sale.
    I doubt anyone belives the sale is an actual civil sale in NY law-it is at best Halachik legal fiction”

    Why?If the shtar mecirah contains language to the effect that it is a legally valid sale in accordance with local law, why is it not a valid sale? FWIW, I was told that that mecirah should not be used for Chametz Gamur, but that it can be used for Taruvos, etc.

  33. MiMedinat HaYam

    steve b — if they use an archaic language (aramaic) in the shtar, ppl will think its some sort of legal fiction. if they use english, and make it look like a real sale, not “add your name to the list”, ppl will know its “real”.

    ditto a ktuba, sale of business to non jew on shabat (i was involve in one to a client once), etc documents.

  34. “Why?If the shtar mecirah contains language to the effect that it is a legally valid sale in accordance with local law, why is it not a valid sale?”

    Cmon-a recital that something is a valid contract does not equal a valid contract in secular law. Going back to Europe there was various amounts of consternation when Rabbonim realized that the mechiras chametz was not recognized per secular law-eg transfer taxes on sales etc.

    ” FWIW, I was told that that mecirah should not be used for Chametz Gamur, but that it can be used for Taruvos, etc.”
    For Drabbonim the problems of it not being a valid sale is not a real problem-hem shehechmiru hem shehitiru-if it were clearly a valid sale one would not have the problem of not wanting to rely on it for chametz gamur-tp paraphrase R Hayyim Soloveitchik in his article where he discusses ribis to a Jew and Rashi-he stated I believe the reason for multiple kinyanim in that procedure was similar to that of mechiras chametz-where no one really believes totally that any individual kinyan is valid.

  35. Mycroft: Your assumption that the sale must be legally binding is not unanimously agreed upon. I owe you a post on this.

  36. Mycroft wrote:

    “I doubt anyone belives the sale is an actual civil sale in NY law-it is at best Halachik legal fiction”

    IMO, usage of the antihalachic term “Halachik legal fiction” does not aid the discussion. Do you view a Prozbul and/or an Eruv Tavshilin in the same light?

  37. Mycroft wrote in part:

    “he stated I believe the reason for multiple kinyanim in that procedure was similar to that of mechiras chametz-where no one really believes totally that any individual kinyan is valid.”

    One need only see the discussion in any sefer on Hilcos Pesach that discusses Meciras Chametz in any detail to realize that there is a major discussion in the Rishonim and Acharonim as to which types of Kinyanim can effectuate a sale to a Gentile.

  38. MeMedinat HaYam-the shtar that I signed for Meciras Chametz was in completely legible and comprehensible English.

  39. “IMO, usage of the antihalachic term “Halachik legal fiction” does not aid the discussion. Do you view a Prozbul and/or an Eruv Tavshilin in the same light?”
    Unless one restricts oneself to selling chametz drabbonan- see Wikipedia “Normally, cooking is allowed on Jewish holidays, but only for consumption on that day, and not for consumption after the holiday. Technically, if such a holiday occurs on Friday, cooking is allowed for the Sabbath, but the rabbis forbade this in order to prevent confusion on other years (when the holiday does not immediately precede the Sabbath) unless this ritual of eruv tavshilin is performed, which would remind the people of the reasons for the exception”
    and “Certain rabbis claim that the Jubilee year is commanded by the Torah only when most Jews are in the land of Israel[citation needed]. Thus, as they aredispersed around the world, shmita, like certain other laws, would not be required by the Torah. According to these rabbis, the great Sanhedrin enacted their own law that while in the land of Israel Jews must continue to observe shmita so its observance will not be forgotten (prior to the entire Jewish people’s eventual return to the land of Israel).

    Thus, if one would agree that shmita does not apply when Israelites are dispersed[6], Hillel, great as he was, would not have changed a law of the Torah in order to fit the needs of his time. He and his beth din would have enacted a rabbinic exception to a rabbinic law. As the Rambam notes in Shmita V’Yovel perek 9, when most Jews again live in the land of Israel and the observance of the sabbatical and jubilee years are Toraitic commandments, the prozbul will no longer be able to be used. According to this theory, Prozbul, like `eruv, is a rabbinic exception to a rabbinic enactment. Prozbul cannot be used to get around the Torah commanded shmita and yovel, just as `eruv cannot be used to get around the fact that Torah prohibited carrying in the public domain.”

    If limited to Drabbonan have no problem conceptually with sale of chametz hem shehichmeru hem shehitiru.
    Of course, who has authorized our standard way of mechiras chametz -certainly not Hillel.

  40. “One need only see the discussion in any sefer on Hilcos Pesach that discusses Meciras Chametz in any detail to realize that there is a major discussion in the Rishonim and Acharonim as to which types of Kinyanim can effectuate a sale to a Gentile”

    To a goy who typically has no capacity to purchase ths chametz sold him. A sale that some Rabbis even announce on Pesach what timethey will be able to guarrantee the goy haschanged his mind by!

  41. “usage of the antihalachic term “Halachik legal fiction” does not aid the discussion”

    There are various degrees of willingness to use legal fictions-see eg the Ravs refusal to use one for a major local philanthropist to keep his factory open on Shabbos.

  42. “One need only see the discussion in any sefer on Hilcos Pesach that discusses Meciras Chametz in any detail to realize that there is a major discussion in the Rishonim and Acharonim as to which types of Kinyanim can effectuate a sale to a Gentile”

    Of course, our way of mechiras Chametz was unheard of during their time.

  43. Steve, I continue to be amazed that a lawyer would have a problem with the term “legal fiction.” It’s not a negative term at all.

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