Owning Chametz on Pesach

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It is forbidden to own chametz on Pesach and one who does violates the Biblical commandment of Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh, not owning or having chametz in your possession that is possible to be seen.

Rentals and Deposits

  1. If someone rents their house to another Jew on Pesach and no one does bedika or bitul chametz, there is a dispute whether the owner violates Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh. Additionally, there is a dispute whether the renter violates those prohibitions. Certainly, the one who has it in his property should get rid of it before Pesach.[1]
  2. Similarly, if someone has a deposit of another Jew's chametz in his property on Pesach he must get rid of it and there is a discussion if the one who has it deposited by would violate Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh.[2]

Storing Chametz in a Non-Jew's Property

  1. A Jew who owns Chametz may not give it to a non-Jew to keep as a deposit even if it is stored in the non-Jew's property. If he does so he will violate owning Chametz on Pesach since in essence it is still his property.[3]
  2. A Jew who owns flour and gives it as a deposit to a non-Jew to store and the non-Jew makes it into Chametz on Pesach, the non-Jew has made it forbidden Chametz and owes the Jew the value of the flour.[4]

Storing a Non-Jew's Chametz

Responsible for the Chametz

  1. It is forbidden for a Jew to store a non-Jew's Chametz on his property if he accepts any responsibility for its loss or theft.[5] Some say that it is forbidden even if he accepts any responsibility even if it is just responsibility for his negligence.[6]
  2. The acquisition in question depends on what is legally binding in secular court since this is a deal between a Jew and a non-Jew.[7]
  3. Bitul does not solve the issue of taking responsibility for a non-Jew's chametz.[8]
  4. It is forbidden for a Jew to store a non-Jew's Chametz even if he does not accept responsibility if the non-Jew will force him to have to pay in the event of theft or loss.[9] Some think this is permitted since the Jew didn't willingly accept any responsibility.[10]

Designating a Place

  1. Chametz of a non-Jew that is stored in his house must be hidden behind a ten tefach wall.[11] This applies to all chametz even Chametz of a non-Jew on his property that he has no responsibility for, nonetheless, he must hide the Chametz behind a wall that is 10 tefachim.[12]
  2. Chametz of a non-Jew for which a person has responsibility is a problem even if it is hidden behind a 10 tefach wall.[13]

Sources

    • The Gra 443:11 writes that if someone has chametz of another Jew in your property you violate Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh. He proves it from Rashi Pesachim 5b. Peni Yehoshua there and 4a agrees. See Or Chadash 4a who disagrees and argues based on Rashi Pesachim 46b. Rav Soloveitchik in Mesorah v. 3 p. 7 answers this proof of the Or Chadash. The fnt. on Maharam Chalavah Pesachim 4a fnt. 26 cites also the Bet Meir 443, Torat Chaim 4a, and Tzlach 5b who hold like the Gra.
    • The Maharam Chalavah 4a s.v. hamaskir and Meiri 4a s.v. vkol hold that both the renter and owner don't violate Baal Yiraeh since the chametz isn't both entirely in their property as well as belong to either of them. Nonetheless, there is a rabbinic obligation to get rid of the chametz. Tosfot Chachmei Engliya 4a is explicit that the Jew who has Chametz of another Jew in his property doesn't violate Baal Yiraeh and that Rashi 5b isn't conclusive. Fnt. to Maharam Chalavah cites the Rabbenu Dovid, and Ran who agree.
    • The Bach 443:5 writes that someone who has a deposit of someone else's chametz doesn't violate Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh. Magen Avraham 443:5 agrees. However, they do state that the one who has the chametz in his property should get rid of the chametz of his fellow to protect him from violating Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh.
  1. Bach 443:5 and Magen Avraham 443:5 state that the one who has the chametz deposited by him wouldn't violate Baal Yiraeh but the owner would violate Baal Yiraeh, while the Gra 443:11 disagrees. Meiri Pesachim 4a s.v. vkol implies that in fact neither the owner or the one who it is deposited by would violate Baal Yiraeh.
  2. Rosh Pesachim 1:4 cites the Geonim who permitted giving his Chametz to a non-Jew as a deposit since it is physically outside his property. Their proof is a Mechilta. The Rosh disputed their position and quotes Rabbenu Yonah who also rejected the Geonim for other reasons. See Taz 440:4 for an explanation of Rabbenu Yonah. Rambam Chametz Umatza 4:3 and Tosfot Chachmei Angliya Pesachim 5b agree with the Rosh. The Rambam is absolutely explicit that this is a Biblical prohibition. Ran Pesachim 2b s.v. umiyhu wonders as to the source for the Rambam. Shulchan Aruch O.C. 440:4 follows the Rosh and Rambam. However, the Ramban Pesachim 6a s.v. vnireh accepts the Geonim and only thinks that there is a rabbinic prohibition to get rid of one's chametz and not simply deposit it in a non-Jew's property. Ran Pesachim 2b s.v. umeyhu agrees.
  3. Tosfot Chachmei Angliya Pesachim 5b quoting story in which a woman deposited flour with a non-Jew and then the non-Jew made it into Chametz on Pesach, thereby making it forbidden. He quotes that Rashi was asked and he said that the non-Jew owes the Jew the value of the flour. Etz Chaim by Rav Chaim of London (complied in 1287, Mosad Rav Kook 5722, Hilchot Pesach p. 312) also quotes this as well.
  4. Rosh Pesachim 1:4 citing the Ri, Rambam Chametz Umatzah 4:3, Shulchan Aruch O.C. 440:1. There is an opinion of Rashi cited by Tosfot Shevuot 44a s.v. shomer that it is only forbidden to accept the non-Jew's chametz if one accepts all responsibility including an unexpected circumstances, otherwise it is permitted. However, this opinion is rejected (Kaf HaChayim on Shulchan Arukh Orach Chayim 440:3:1).
  5. Bahag cited by Rosh Pesachim 1:4
  6. Kaf HaChayim on Shulchan Arukh Orach Chayim 440:3:2 writes that there is a dispute between the Chok Yakov 440:1 who thinks that if the deal is binding in Jewish law it is an issue, while the Chok Yosef 440:1 argues that it all depends on what the secular courts would rule. Kaf HaChayim makes a compromise; if it is common for the non-Jew to force the Jew to follow Jewish law then it is an issue even if it is binding according to Jewish law and if not then this halacha depends on secular law.
  7. Kaf HaChayim on Shulchan Arukh Orach Chayim 440:3:5 and 10 cites the Shagat Aryeh 77 and Machzik Bracha 440:1 who hold that bitul is ineffective on a non-Jew's chametz, while the Mekor Chaim 440:3 holds that it is helpful to avoid violating Baal Yiraeh and Baal Yimaseh.
  8. Rambam Chametz Umatzah 4:4, Shulchan Aruch O.C. 440:1. Regarding the Raavad's questions from the Gemara and from logic how a Jew could violate owning Chametz of a non-Jew if he didn't accept any responsibility, the Midgal Oz (Chametz Umatza 4:4) answers that in Pesachim 6a it is clear that a Jew can be responsible for Chametz of a non-Jew even if he isn't formally considered his property. See Even Haezel for another approach in that the Jew accepted the responsibility by paying for the loss or theft. Maharit Bechorot 2:17 explains that the Rambam is only speaking about a rabbinic prohibition since it appears like his property in that he is paying for loss or theft. He compares it to the Rashba Chullin 39b s.v. chazinan.
  9. Raavad Chametz Umatza 4:4
  10. Pesachim 6a, Rambam Chametz Umatza 4:2, Rif Pesachim 2b, Rosh Pesachim 1:7, Shulchan Aruch O.C. 440:2. Bach on Rif 2b n. 2 points out that some versions of the Rif do not include this text, while the Ran on Rif s.v. chemso implies that his version of the Rif had it.
  11. Pesachim 6a, Rambam Chametz Umatza 4:2, Shulchan Aruch O.C. 440:2. Bet Yosef 440:2 points out that Rashi Pesachim 6a s.v. chemso and Rambam Chametz Umatza 4:2 hold that it is necessary to make a 10 tefach wall even if the Jew has no responsibility for it. However, the Rabbenu Tam (Tosfot Pesachim 6a s.v. yiched) and Ramban Pesachim 6a s.v. aval who hold that designating a house for chametz for which you have responsibility works, would also hold that you don't need to hide the chametz behind a 10 tefach wall unless you have responsibility for it. Gra 440:6 agrees. The Bach 440:3 s.v. vnireh (2) argues that Rabbenu Tam and Ramban only said that designated house which the non-Jew can use is sufficient for Chametz for which a person has responsibility. However, a ten tefach wall is necessary for all Chametz even if there's no responsibility. This could be proven by the fact that the Tosfot and Rosh who disagree with Rashi regarding designating a house for a non-Jew say nothing when it comes to the question of requiring a ten tefach wall. Nonetheless, the Meiri Pesachim 6a s.v. vyesh mefarshim, Rivash responsa 401, Ran 2b s.v. chemso explicitly prove the Bet Yosef's view in associating these two questions. In the view of the Bet Yosef, Meiri, and Rivash having a 10 tefach wall is equally as effective as designating a house for the non-Jew's chametz, while the Lechem Mishna Chametz Umatza 4:3 thinks that it is necessary to have both for Rabbenu Tam, designating the house for the Biblical issue of having responsibility for a non-Jew's chametz and a ten tefach wall for the rabbinic concern that a Jew will come to eat it.
  12. Rashi Pesachim 6a s.v. yiched and Rambam Chametz Umatza 4:3 both hold that chametz of a non-Jew for which a Jew has responsibility is an issue whether it is in his property or in another property or behind a 10 tefach wall. The Ramban Pesachim 6a s.v. vriyti understands that this is the opinion of the Rif as well. However, the Rabbenu Tam (Tosfot Pesachim 6a s.v. yiched) is lenient if the chametz is in a designated house for the non-Jew. Ramban (Pesachim 6a s.v. ha and Shemot 12:19), Ran 2b s.v. garsinan, Baal Haitur (Biur Chametz p. 121c), Baal Hameor cited by Rivash responsa 401, Rosh Pesachim 1:6, and Raavad cited by Rosh agree with Rabbenu Tam. Shulchan Aruch O.C. 440:1 follows Rashi.