Halacha for Sunday 2 Nissan 5779 April 7 2019

One Who Will be Away from Home on Pesach

Question: We are traveling to the United States for Pesach where we will be staying with my brother and we will be renting a car. Is it permissible to rely on the sale of Chametz for all of the Chametz we have at home in Israel?

Answer: Let us first explain the question. If one leaves one’s home on the of the days prior to Pesach with the intention of not returning home until after Pesach, one must perform the search for Chametz on the night before one leaves. This search should be performed without reciting a blessing but with a candle, as one usually would (Kaf Ha’Chaim Chapter 436, Subsection 6).

The above situation involves a family leaving home for the entire duration of Pesach but they are not cleaning and ridding the house of its Chametz contents; rather, they are leaving Chametz in the pantries, closets, and such while relying on the sale of Chametz and that all of the Chametz items in the house will be sold to a non-Jew. In such a case, there is no need to search for Chametz since there is no doubt that the entire house is full of Chametz, however, this Chametz will not belong to them as it will be sold to the non-Jew through the customary sale of Chametz.

There are nevertheless two issues which must be discussed. The first issue is that one who leaves one’s home for the entire duration of Pesach is forfeiting the Mitzvah of searching for and burning Chametz and the Gemara (Menachot 41a) states that there are times when one is punished for absolving one’s self from a positive Torah commandment.

Another issue is that the customary sale of Chametz is usually executed on the morning of the 14th of Nissan, Erev Pesach. Thus, the night before which is when the Mitzvah of searching for Chametz takes effect, the Chametz has not yet been sold. There is therefore room to claim that one must nevertheless perform the search for Chametz on that night since the Chametz will belong to this individual until the next morning. Indeed, the Chayei Adam (Chapter 119) and others rule likewise that one must nevertheless search for Chametz in one’s possession on the night of the 14th of the Nissan although one intends to have it sold the next morning.

Halachically speaking, Hagaon Harav Ben Zion Abba Shaul zt”l (quoted in Ohr Le’Zion Volume 3, Chapter 7, Section 19) rules that it is preferable for one not to include all the rooms of the house in the sale; rather, one should search one room (on the last night one is home or immediately preceding one’s departure) and perform the Mitzvah in this manner. The great Rishon Le’Zion, Hagaon Rabbeinu Yitzchak Yosef Shlit”a writes (in his Yalkut Yosef-Pesach, Chapter 436) that if one has not searched for Chametz, it is preferable for one to see to it that one’s Chametz is already sold on the 13th of Nissan so that one does not enter a possible obligation to search for Chametz.

If one will have a car where one will be for Pesach, one must search the car for Chametz on the night of the 14th of Nissan, as one would any other year. One should not recite a blessing upon searching for Chametz in one’s car (Shalmei Mo’ed, page 313).

Summary: If one travels away from home several days before Pesach, it is preferable that one perform the search for Chametz in one of the rooms of one’s home and clean this room of all Chametz while including all the rest of the Chametz in the home in the sale of Chametz. If one will have a car in the place one will be for Pesach, one should check one’s car for Chametz on the night of the 14th of Nissan. However, no blessing is recited upon searching one’s car for Chametz.

8 Halachot Most Popular

One Who Begins the Amida Prayer and Then Remembers That He Has Already Prayed

Question: What is the appropriate procedure for one has begun to recite the Amida prayer and then suddenly remembers that he has already prayed that specific prayer? Answer: We have already explained that one may pray a voluntary prayer which one is not obligated to as a voluntary prayer and is t......

Read Halacha

Praying Arvit on a Voluntary Basis

We have mentioned in the previous Halacha that if one was in the midst of reciting the Amida prayer and then suddenly remembers that he has already prayed this prayer, one must stop praying immediately, for all of one’s blessings are considered blessings in vain. One may not intend for the rem......

Read Halacha

The Holiday of Shavuot

Regarding the giving of the Torah, the Torah states (Shemot 19): “And they travelled from Refidim and they arrived at the Sinai Desert and they camped in the desert; and Israel camped there opposite the mountain.” Rabbeinu Chaim ben Atar, the saintly “Or Ha’Chaim,” ......

Read Halacha

Laws of the Compensatory Prayer-Continued

In the previous Halachot we have explained that if one forgets to pray a certain prayer, the individual must compensate for the missed prayer by reciting the Amida of the next prayer twice, once for the current obligatory prayer and the second as a compensatory prayer for the prayer one missed. T......

Read Halacha


Some Laws Regarding the Compensatory Prayer and the Laws of Women Regarding the Compensatory Prayer

In the Halachot sent out before Shavuot, we have discussed the general laws of the compensatory prayer which is that if one forgets to pray a certain prayer, one must compensate for this prayer immediately at the end of the following prayer one prays. For instance, if one has forgotten to pray Shach......

Read Halacha

Blessings of Enjoyment and Keri’at Shema on the Night of Shavuot

In the previous Halacha, we have discussed the order of learning for the night of Shavuot during which it is customary to remain awake all night and study Torah. Reading the Order of the “Keri’eh Mo’ed” Let us first discuss that which we have mentioned that it is proper t......

Read Halacha

The Customary Order of the Night of Shavuot

The Source for the Order of the Night of Shavuot The widespread custom among the entire Jewish nation is to stay awake the entire night of Shavuot and immerse one’s self in Torah study until dawn. Indeed, the holy Zohar states: “The earlier righteous individuals would not sleep on this ......

Read Halacha

Sweet Pastries and Dairy Chocolate

In the previous Halachot, we have explained that our Sages prohibited baking bread with milk (or animal fat) mixed in the dough lest others come and eat this bread with meat (or dairy). We have mentioned that if the bread or baked good is baked in a distinct shape which everyone recognizes to be ......

Read Halacha