Halacha for Tuesday 22 Kislev 5781 December 8 2020

The Laws of Married Children Staying with Their Parents and One Staying in a Hotel

In the previous Halacha, we have explained that although one who has no one lighting on his behalf at home (for instance, because he has no family or because his family is with him) and is staying as a guest in a friend’s home on Chanukah should have been obligated to light candles in one’s present location, nevertheless, he fulfills his obligation through the host’s lighting. This only applies, however, when the host does not collect any payment from the guest for room and board, for if he does, the guest must contribute a few coins to the host to acquire a share in the oil and wicks of his Chanukah candles. We have also written above that, in any case, it is preferable for the guest to chip in a small amount for the oil and wicks, even when he is not paying for any of his host’s expenses.

However, Maran Rabbeinu Ovadia Yosef zt”l writes that if the “guests” are a married son or daughter staying in their parents’ house, they need not contribute anything toward the cost of the oil or wicks because they are considered to be actual members of the household and they fulfill their obligation through the Chanukah candle-lighting of the head of the household. Nevertheless, even in this situation, Hagaon Harav David Yosef Shlit”a writes that it is still preferable to give a few coins toward the cost of the oil and wicks. It is understood though that the aforementioned applies only according to custom of the Sephardim that “the Mitzvah of the candle is for a man and his household,” as we have explained in previous Halachot. However, according to the Ashkenazi custom, the son or son-in-law may have in mind not to fulfill their obligation through the lighting of the head of the household and he may subsequently light and bless on his own.

One who is staying in a hotel which is comprised only of rooms designated for guests and is not the private dwelling place of the hotel owner as well (and in addition, no one is lighting at home on the guests behalf, see above), must light Chanukah candles in one’s hotel room and recite the appropriate blessings before lighting.

Ask the Rabbi


8 Halachot Most Popular

Washing One’s Hands with Water from the Mediterranean Sea and Water Which has been Desalinated

Question: If one is at the beach and wishes to eat bread but has no water to wash one’s hands with, may one wash one’s hands using the water of the sea or ocean? Salty Water Answer: Regarding the laws of washing one’s hands for a bread meal, the Mishnah and Gemara teach us that......

Read Halacha

Immersing One’s Hands in Sea Water

We have explained in the previous Halacha that if one is on the beach and wishes to eat bread, one may not gather some sea water in a vessel and wash one’s hands, for sea water is salty and thus invalid for Netilat Yadayim. Immersing One’s Hands in a Spring, the Sea, or a Mikveh Howe......

Read Halacha

The Eight Levels of Tzedakah

The Rambam (Chapter 10 of Hilchot Matenot Aniyim) writes that there are eight levels included in the Mitzvah of Tzedakah with each one being greater than the other. The highest level of Tzedakah is by helping to support a Jew who lacks his basic needs by providing him with money by means of a gif......

Read Halacha

Washing One’s Hands in the Restroom

Question: Is it permissible to wash one’s hands (Netilat Yadayim) in the restroom or shower room? Answer: Maran Ha’Shulchan Aruch (Chapter 4) rules that one who exits the restroom requires Netilat Yadayim. Maran Ha’Chida writes that this is because of the evil spirit which rests......

Read Halacha


Listening to Music or Words of Torah in a Room Which Has a Bathtub or Shower in it

Question: May one recite holy words (words of Torah, prayer, or blessings) in a room with a bathtub or shower in it? Similarly, may one listen to holy songs or Torah lectures in such a room? Answer: There are two primary points which must be addressed: Firstly, whether or not one who is bathing a......

Read Halacha

The Mitzvah of Tzedakah and Donating a Tenth of One’s Earnings

By popular demand, we shall now discuss the topics of Tzedakah and donating a tenth of one’s earnings more broadly based on the words of Maran Ha’Shulchan Aruch and the Poskim and based on what is written in the works of Maran Rabbeinu Ovadia Yosef zt”l on this topic. Question: ......

Read Halacha

Food Items Touched by One Who Did Not Wash One’s Hands in the Morning

In the past, we have explained the obligation for one to wash one’s hands from a vessel every morning upon awakening from his sleep. We have also explained that when one awakens from one’s sleep in the morning, an evil spirit rests on one’s hands, for sleep is considered one-six......

Read Halacha

Question: Are those who customarily donate a tenth of their monthly income to Tzedakah permitted to deduct the cost of providing for their children still living at home from the sum of this ten percent?

Answer: We have previously discussed that one must donate a certain amount of Tzedakah annually. It is a “middle” level for one to give a tenth of one’s monthly profits every month. Now let us deal with our question regarding those who donate a tenth of their monthly profits to Tze......

Read Halacha