ח׳ בסיון ה׳תשע״ג (May 17, 2013)

Eiruvin 70a-b: Turning Over Inherited Rights

We have already learned that in the event that a person did not participate in the eiruv before Shabbat, he can be mevatel reshuto – turn over his rights in the courtyard to the other residents on Shabbat – in order to allow them to carry in the courtyard.

Rava raised a dilemma before Rav Nahman: With regard to an heir, what is the halakha regarding whether he may renounce rights in a courtyard? If a person who had forgotten to establish an eiruv died on Shabbat, may his heir renounce his rights in his stead?

Rava asks Rav Nahman whether someone who inherits property on Shabbat (i.e. his father did not participate in the eiruv and passed away on Shabbat) can do so. The question, as explained by the Gemara, is whether such a person is restricted from turning over his rights on Shabbat, since – as he was not the owner of the house before Shabbat – he could not have done so prior to Shabbat. On the other hand, he is stepping into his father’s role regarding this inheritance, which may give him the same rights that his father had, including the right to be mevatel reshuto.

It appears that the Gemara is trying to ascertain the status of the child with regard to his inheritance. The question is whether we see him in a role that is similar to a purchaser, in the sense that with his father’s passing the property moves from his father’s ownership into his possession, or do we view him as actually replacing his father, which would give him all of the powers and benefits that his father possessed with regard to this property. According to this possibility, from a legal perspective, the child would be seen as one-and-the-same as his father regarding the laws of property ownership.

Rav Nahman responds that his opinion would be to allow the child who received his inheritance on Shabbat to turn over his rights to the other residents, but points out that the students of Shmuel disagree and do not allow him to do so.

Following the rule that with regard to eiruvin we follow the more lenient opinion, the halakha follows the position of Rav Nahman, and regarding these rules the child is seen as stepping into his father’s shoes, which allows him to be mevatel reshuto in this case.

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