Does inheritance go through a father who is dead to be passed on to his son or does the son inherit directly from the grandfather? Does a son who predeceases his mother inherit from his mother “in his grave” in order to pass on the inheritance to his half brothers through his father? Or does her inheritance revert back to her father’s family? The tenth perek begins with a discussion of different types of documents – a regular shtar and one that has folds.
Shiur in memory of Oz Wilchek z”l
More cases are brought of people who die at the same time and the heirs debate who died first and who should get the possessions.
If a father and a son die at around the same time and it is unclear who died first and there is not enough money to pay the ketuba and one who is owed money by the son, the creditors and the inheritors debate: the creditors claim the father died first and the son inherited the money and the inheritors claim the son died first and didn’t inherit the money to pay them back. Beit Shamai said they split it 50/50 and Beit Hillel said the money remains in the hands of the inheritors. The gemara raises a question about one who borrows money and subsequently possesses land and sells it. If the creditor had included land that will be acquired by the borrower in the future, would that work to have a lien on the land that was acquired later and then sold or bequeathed. This question is not asked according to Rabbi Meir who says one can acquire something not in existence at the time (because obviously this would work). The question is according to the rabbis who think one can’t acquire something not in existence at the time – would it be different in this case? Several sources are brought to attempt to answer the question but each is rejected as they can each be attributed to Rabbi Meir.
If children under the age of 18 or 20 can’t sell possessions they inherited, are they allowed to testify in court about monetary issues? If they are not allowed to sell, are they allowed to give a gift? It depends of what the reason is for why they can’t sell the property – is it because we are worried they will get taken advantage of or because they may be greedy for money and accept money on behalf of all the possessions and end up without possessions? Rav Nachman brings in the name of Shmuel a list of cases where one must check if the person has simanim of maturity (2 pubic hairs). Rabbi Elazar’s (the tanna) opinion is brought that one on one’s deathbed cannot pass on possessions through words but must do an actual kinyan. A debate between him and the rabbis regarding a few cases is brought – each one explains the cases in support of their position. The next mishna has a debate between Rabbi Eliezer and Rabbi Yehoshua regarding the differences between what one on one’s deathbed can do on Shabbat and on a regular day. The mishna reads one way but Rabbi Meir has a different version of the debate which is quoted by the gemara.
Today’s shiur includes an organized review of page 154. At what age can one sell one’s father’s possessions? 18 or 20? What if one at age 20 doesn’t have 2 hairs, at what age do we assume he will not grow hairs and yet we validate his sale? What about at the beginning of the 18th/20th year? What if one over 12/13 but under 18/20 shows signs of understanding business dealings, can we accept a sale?
There are a number of rabbis who debated whether Rabbi Meir and the rabbis in the mishna were debating whether or not the person who gave the gift needed to prove he was sick at the time or if the receiver needed to prove that the person was healthy at the time or did they all agree that the assumption is that if he is healthy now, then he was healthy then but what remains to be proven according to the rabbis in the mishna is that the document is valid. According to the latter opinion, if one comes and says that a document is valid but the circumstances were such that it would render the document irrelevant, do we believe them or not? Do we say the document is valid since the owner admitted it was valid and we do not accept his admission that it was invalid (i.e. he was on his deathbed and is now better) or since we accept his word that the document is valid, we accept it to say it is invalid?
Rav and Shmuel debate a number of topics relating to gifts given on one’s deathbed. If one gives a gift with a kinyan chalipin (symbolic) – are we concerned that he added the kinyan in order to override the laws of one on one’s deathbed and only wanted it to be effective with a shtar (document) or do we assume it was done just to strengthen the gift? If one gave to one person and “zika lo” (various different interpretations what that is) and then gave to another and “zika lo,” does the first one acquire it or the second? If one says I am giving this to you “in my life and in my death,” what is meant by that statement? The mishna and the following gemara discuss cases where it is unclear whether the gift was given on one’s deathbed or when one was healthy or the gift was given on one’s deathbed and later the person died but it is unclear if they died from the illness at the time or they got better (in which case the gift should be cancelled) and then subsequently died?
Various stories are brought regarding women on their deathbed who gave property to one son and then changed their minds. The rabbis rule debated what the ruling should be – can one change one’s mind or once one gives away all their possessions and subsequently dies, the first statement they made is valid? A case is brought by a woman who keeps getting sick and giving an orchard of hers to a brother each time. One time, he tricked her into doing it in a way that would work – he had her leave over a bit and did a kinyan. However Rav Nachman ruled that since she said she was giving it to him because she thought she would die, once she got better, the kinyan was ineffective. At this point the gemara clarifies the case in the mishna and explains that while there are those who understand the mishna in its simple reading, Rav Nachman and others hold that the mishna was referring only to cases where a kinyan was effected, meaning that if one gave away not all of his possessions and then died or got better, if the gift was given without a kinyan, the person would not acquire the possessions. Additionally, if one did do a kinyan and didn’t give away all of one’s possessions but stated that it was because the person thought they were dying, then if they got better, the gift would be returned to him/her. Rav and Shmuel debate the case of one on one’s deathbed who gives away all of one’s possessions and adds a kinyan. Did one intend for a shtar (document) to be given and since they died before it was given, it can no longer be given and the whole thing is invalid – or are we not concerned about that possibility? Their opinions here seem to contradict their opinions elsewhere and then gemara responds that the situations are different in each of the cases and therefore they don’t contradict each other.
A question is brought against Rav Yosef who claimed that “kol shehu” means a tiny bit. The question is brought from a source regarding the first shearings where “kol shehu” means a particular amount. When one gives another moveable property, what is included? It depends on the wording – “moveable property,” “all moveable property,” “anything that moves.” Are slaves considered property (karka) moveable items (metaltalin)? Five cases are brought where the halacha will only be applicable if ALL of one’s property is included. And in all of them, except one(ketuba), property could mean moveable and non-movable items. The gemara derives from various sources all different types of things that would be included in the word “nechasim” – property.
What language must be used in order for a gift stated on one’s deathbed will be a valid gift? If one sells all of one’s property on one’s deathbed, is it a valid sale if they recover from their illness? If one admits on one’s deathbed that one owes money, do we believe the admission or is it possible they are just trying to show people that the inheritors don’t have a lot of money? A story os brought of Issur the convert and how he was able to use this as a solution to passing on his possessions to his son (who was conceived before his conversion and therefore did not fall into the category of an heir). The mishna says if one divided up one’s possessions on one’s deathbed but left over land of any amount, and then recovers, the gift is valid. Rav Yehuda says that “any amount” actually means an amount worthy of sustaining him/her. Rav Yirmiya says that even if one left over movable items worthy of sustaining. Rav Zeira supports their opinions and Rav Yosef questions them based on the wording in the mishna (“land” and “any amount”). Abaye supports Rabii Zeira from a mishna in Peah where land actually includes movable items.