When a sh'chiv me'ra says: "My son, so and so, should inherit my estate," that son alone should inherit the estate, and not the man's other sons. Similarly, if he makes such statements about one daughter with regard to his other daughters, one brother with regard to his other brothers, or similarly, with regard to other heirs, his words are binding.


שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאָמַר בְּנִי פְּלוֹנִי יִירָשֵׁנִי. הֲרֵי זֶה יוֹרֵשׁ אוֹתוֹ לְבַדּוֹ וְלֹא יִירָשׁוּהוּ שְׁאָר הַבָּנִים. וְכֵן אִם אָמַר עַל בַּת בֵּין הַבָּנוֹת אוֹ אָח בֵּין הָאַחִין אוֹ שְׁאָר יוֹרְשִׁין דְּבָרָיו קַיָּמִין:


If a healthy person makes such statements, his words are of no consequence.


אֲבָל הַבָּרִיא אֵין דְּבָרָיו קַיָּמִין:


When a sh'chiv me'ra states: "My property should be given to so and so, and after him, to so and so," the second person receives only what the first person leaves over.


שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאָמַר נְכָסַי לִפְלוֹנִי וְאַחֲרָיו לִפְלוֹנִי. אֵין לַשֵּׁנִי אֶלָּא מַה שֶּׁשִּׁיֵּר רִאשׁוֹן:


If, however, the first person was fit to inherit the estate of the sh'chiv me'ra - e.g., he was one of his sons - the second person does not receive anything. For regardless of the expression used to give a gift to an heir, it is considered as if he were given an inheritance. And an inheritance never ends. This applies even though the giver said: "After him, it should be given to so and so."


וְאִם הָיָה הָרִאשׁוֹן רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ כְּגוֹן שֶׁהָיָה בֵּן מִכְּלַל הַבָּנִים אֵין לַשֵּׁנִי כְּלוּם. שֶׁכָּל לְשׁוֹן מַתָּנָה לַיּוֹרֵשׁ הֲרֵי הוּא כִּלְשׁוֹן יְרֻשָּׁה. וִירֻשָּׁה אֵין לָהּ הֶפְסֵק וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאָמַר וְאַחֲרָיו לִפְלוֹנִי:


If, however, a healthy person gave a gift in this manner and had a deed composed saying: "My property should be given to you, and after you to so and so," the second person receives only what the first person leaves over. This applies whether or not the first person was fit to inherit the estate of the giver.


אֲבָל הַבָּרִיא שֶׁנָּתַן מַתְּנַת בָּרִיא עַל דֶּרֶךְ זֶה וְכָתַב לָזֶה נְכָסַי לְךָ וְאַחֲרֶיךָ לִפְלוֹנִי. אֵין לַשֵּׁנִי אֶלָּא מַה שֶּׁשִּׁיֵּר רִאשׁוֹן בֵּין שֶׁהָיָה הָרִאשׁוֹן רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ בֵּין שֶׁלֹּא הָיָה רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ:

Mishneh Torah (Moznaim)

Featuring a modern English translation and a commentary that presents a digest of the centuries of Torah scholarship which have been devoted to the study of the Mishneh Torah by Maimonides.


There is an exception to the principle stated above with regard to a sh'chiv me'ra who says: "My property should be given to you, and after you to so and so," and the first recipient is fit to inherit the giver's estate. If the giver explicitly states: "I am not giving you this property as an inheritance that never ceases, but as a gift, and I have set a limit to it," the second person acquires what the first leaves over.

For this reason, if the giver entrusted the money to a third party, or he said: "Give my sons a shekel every week. I am not giving them this money as an inheritance. Afterwards, what remains of the estate after their death should be given to so and so," they should be given only a shekel a week, even though it does not suffice for them.


שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאָמַר נְכָסַי לְךָ וְאַחֲרֶיךָ לִפְלוֹנִי וְהָיָה רִאשׁוֹן רָאוּי לְיָרְשׁוֹ וּפֵרֵשׁ וְאָמַר לֹא מִשּׁוּם יְרֻשָּׁה אֲנִי נוֹתֵן לְךָ שֶׁאֵין לָהּ הֶפְסֵק אֶלָּא בְּמַתָּנָה וַהֲרֵי הִפְסַקְתִּיהָ. הַשֵּׁנִי קוֹנֶה מַה שֶּׁמְּשַׁיֵּר הָרִאשׁוֹן. לְפִיכָךְ אִם נָתַן הַמָּעוֹת עַל יַד שָׁלִישׁ אוֹ שֶׁאָמַר תְּנוּ לְבָנַי שֶׁקֶל בְּכָל שַׁבָּת וְלֹא מִשּׁוּם יְרֻשָּׁה אֲנִי נוֹתְנָם לָהֶם. וְהַנִּשְׁאָר מִן הַנְּכָסִים אַחַר מוֹתָם יִהְיֶה לִפְלוֹנִי. אֵין נוֹתְנִין לָהֶם אֶלָּא שֶׁקֶל אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינוֹ מַסְפִּיק לָהֶם:


If a sh'chiv me'ra states: "My property should be given to so and so, and after him to so and so," and the first person named dies, the property is acquired by the second. If the second person named also dies, the property is given to the heirs of the second person.

If, however, the second person dies during the lifetime of the first, and the first dies before the sh'chiv me'ra, the property should be given to the heirs of the first person.


נְכָסַי לִפְלוֹנִי וְאַחֲרָיו לִפְלוֹנִי. מֵת רִאשׁוֹן קָנָה שֵׁנִי. מֵת שֵׁנִי הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ שֶׁל יוֹרְשֵׁי הַשֵּׁנִי. מֵת שֵׁנִי בְּחַיֵּי רִאשׁוֹן יִהְיוּ הַנְּכָסִים שֶׁל יוֹרְשֵׁי רִאשׁוֹן:


Although the second person named receives only what the first person leaves over, it is forbidden for the first person to sell or give as a gift the body of the property that he has been given. Instead, he is entitled to reap the benefits from the property until he dies, at which time the second person acquires the property.


וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין לַשֵּׁנִי אֶלָּא מַה שֶּׁשִּׁיֵּר רִאשׁוֹן אָסוּר לָרִאשׁוֹן לִמְכֹּר וְלִתֵּן גּוּפוֹ אֶלָּא אוֹכֵל הַפֵּרוֹת עַד שֶׁיָּמוּת וְיִזְכֶּה הַשֵּׁנִי:


If, however, the first person transgresses and sells or gives as a gift the property, the second person cannot expropriate the property from the recipient. For the second person does not have any right to the body of the property or the benefits from it, but only what remains after the first person dies.

Any person who advises the first person named to sell the property is called "wicked."

Even if the estate contained servants and the first person granted them their freedom or garments and he made them shrouds for a corpse, his deeds are binding.


וְאִם עָבַר הָרִאשׁוֹן וּמָכַר וְנָתַן בְּמַתָּנָה. אֵין הַשֵּׁנִי מוֹצִיא מִיַּד הַלָּקוֹחוֹת שֶׁאֵין לַשֵּׁנִי לֹא מִן הַגּוּף וְלֹא מִן הַפֵּרוֹת אֶלָּא הַנִּשְׁאָר. וְכָל הַמַּשִּׂיא עֵצָה לָרִאשׁוֹן לִמְכֹּר נִקְרָא רָשָׁע. וַאֲפִלּוּ הָיָה בָּהֶן עֲבָדִים וְהוֹצִיאָן הָרִאשׁוֹן לְחֵרוּת אוֹ כֵּלִים וַעֲשָׂאָן תַּכְרִיכִין לְמֵת מַעֲשָׂיו קַיָּמִין:


When does the above apply? When the first person sold or gave as a gift the property to an outside party. If, however, the first person sold or gave them as a gift to his son or to another heir, his deeds are of no consequence.

Similarly, if he gave the property as a gift of a sh'chiv me'ra to an outside party, his deeds are of no consequence. The rationale is that the recipient of a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra does not acquire it until after the sh'chiv me'ra dies, and when the first recipient dies, the property has already been acquired by the second person named by the original giver.


בַּמֶּה דְּבָרִים אֲמוּרִים בְּשֶׁמָּכַר הָרִאשׁוֹן אוֹ נָתַן מַתָּנָה לַאֲחֵרִים. אֲבָל אִם מְכָרָן הָרִאשׁוֹן אוֹ נְתָנָן לִבְנוֹ מַתָּנָה אוֹ לְאֶחָד מִיּוֹרְשָׁיו לֹא עָשָׂה כְּלוּם. וְכֵן אִם נְתָנָן בְּמַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע אֲפִלּוּ לַאֲחֵרִים לֹא עָשָׂה כְּלוּם שֶׁאֵין מַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע קוֹנָה אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה וּכְשֶׁיָּמוּת יִקְנֶה הַשֵּׁנִי:


In the above situation, if the first recipient owes a debt or must pay his wife the money due her by virtue of her ketubah, and the court seeks to collect the debt from this property, even if the first recipient is still alive, the court does not collect the debt from the body of the property itself. Instead, only the proceeds from it are indentured.

If the first person dies and his creditor or his wife seeks to expropriate this property, nothing at all is expropriated for them. This applies even when he made them an ipotiki or designated them for his wife so that she could collect the money due her by virtue of her ketubah from them. Nothing is expropriated from this property, because it belongs to the second person.


הָיָה חוֹב עַל הָרִאשׁוֹן אוֹ כְּתֻבַּת אִשָּׁה וּבָאוּ לְבֵית דִּין לְהִפָּרַע מִנְּכָסִים אֵלּוּ. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהָרִאשׁוֹן קַיָּם אֵין בֵּית דִּין מְגַבִּין אוֹתָם מִגּוּף הַנְּכָסִים אֶלָּא מִן הַפֵּרוֹת בִּלְבַד שָׁמִין לָהֶם. מֵת הָרִאשׁוֹן וּבָא בַּעַל חוֹבוֹ וְאִשְׁתּוֹ לִגְבּוֹת מִנְּכָסִים אֵלּוּ אֵין מְגַבִּין לָהֶם כְּלוּם אֲפִלּוּ עֲשָׂאָן אַפּוֹתֵיקֵי אוֹ שֶׁיִּחֲדָן לְאִשְׁתּוֹ בִּכְתֻבָּתָהּ אֵינָן גּוֹבִין מִנְּכָסִים אֵלּוּ כְּלוּם אֶלָּא הֲרֵי הֵן שֶׁל שֵׁנִי:


When a sh'chiv me'ra says to an unmarried woman: "My property should be given to you, and after you to so and so," and then the woman marries, her husband is considered to be a purchaser, and the second person may not expropriate the property from him.

If the woman was already married when the sh'chiv me'ra said: "...and after you to so and so," the second person may expropriate the property from the husband. The rationale is that since she acquired the property on this condition when she was married, it is as though the sh'chiv me'ra told her explicitly: "After your death, so and so will acquire the property, and not your husband."

Therefore, if she sold this property while she was married to her husband, and then died while married to her husband, the property should remain in the possession of the purchaser. For if the husband expropriated the property from the purchaser because his wife sold it while she was married, the second person mentioned by the original giver may expropriate the property from the husband, and then the man who purchased it from the woman may expropriate it from the second person, for she sold the property to him, and the second person is entitled only to property that the woman left over. And the cycle could continue endlessly. Nevertheless, since the only one who spent money for the property is the purchaser, the property is allowed to remain in his possession.

An incident occurred with regard to a person who said: "Let my property be given to my mother, and after her to my heirs." He had a married daughter. That daughter died during her husband's lifetime, and also in the lifetime of her father's mother. After she died, the elder woman also died.

Our Sages said: The daughter's husband does not inherit that property, for it was only fitting for his wife to inherit, and she did not actually have a right to acquire the property until she had died.

If the daughter had left a son or a daughter, they would have inherited the estate, for the expression "heirs" used by the deceased includes even the heirs' heirs. And if the dying man had said: "When the elder woman dies, the estate becomes my daughter's retroactive to the present time," the daughter's husband would inherit it after his wife's death.


שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאָמַר לְאִשָּׁה פְּנוּיָה נְכָסַי לָךְ וְאַחֲרַיִךְ לִפְלוֹנִי וְעָמְדָה וְנִשֵּׂאת. בַּעַל לוֹקֵחַ הוּא וְאֵין הַשֵּׁנִי מוֹצִיא מִיַּד הַבַּעַל. וְאִם אָמַר לָהּ כְּשֶׁהִיא נְשׂוּאָה נְכָסַי לִיךְ וְאַחֲרַיִךְ לִפְלוֹנִי וּמֵתָה. הַשֵּׁנִי מוֹצִיא מִיַּד הַבַּעַל. שֶׁכֵּיוָן שֶׁזָּכְתָה בַּנְּכָסִים עַל תְּנַאי זֶה כְּשֶׁהִיא נְשׂוּאָה נִמְצָא כְּאִלּוּ אָמַר לָהּ בְּפֵרוּשׁ אַחֲרַיִךְ יִקְנֶה פְּלוֹנִי לֹא הַבַּעַל. לְפִיכָךְ אִם מָכְרָה נְכָסִים אֵלּוּ כְּשֶׁהִיא תַּחַת בַּעְלָהּ וּמֵתָה תַּחַת בַּעְלָהּ יַעַמְדוּ נְכָסִים בְּיַד הַלּוֹקֵחַ שֶׁאִם יוֹצִיא הַבַּעַל מִיַּד הַלּוֹקֵחַ מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמָּכְרָה כְּשֶׁהִיא נְשׂוּאָה הֲרֵי הַשֵּׁנִי מוֹצִיא מִיַּד הַבַּעַל וְהַלּוֹקֵחַ חוֹזֵר וּמוֹצִיא מִיַּד הַשֵּׁנִי. שֶׁהֲרֵי מָכְרָה לוֹ וְאֵין לוֹ אֶלָּא מַה שֶּׁשִּׁיֵּר רִאשׁוֹן. וְאֵין בִּשְׁלָשְׁתָּן מִי שֶׁהוֹצִיא מָמוֹן אֶלָּא הַלּוֹקֵחַ. וּלְפִיכָךְ תַּעֲמֹד בְּיָדוֹ. מַעֲשֶׂה בְּאֶחָד שֶׁאָמַר נְכָסַי לְאִמִּי וְאַחֲרֶיהָ לְיוֹרְשַׁי וְהָיְתָה לוֹ בַּת נְשׂוּאָה וּמֵתָה הַבַּת בְּחַיֵּי בַּעְלָהּ וּבְחַיֵּי אֵם אָבִיהָ וְאַחַר כָּךְ מֵתָה הַזְּקֵנָה. וְאָמְרוּ חֲכָמִים אֵין הַבַּעַל יוֹרֵשׁ אוֹתָן נְכָסִים מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהֵן רְאוּיִין לְאִשְׁתּוֹ וְלֹא זָכְתָה בָּהֶן הָאִשָּׁה אֶלָּא אַחַר שֶׁמֵּתָה. אֲבָל אִם הִנִּיחָה הַבַּת בֵּן אוֹ בַּת הָיוּ יוֹרְשִׁין הַנְּכָסִים. שֶׁמַּשְׁמָע יוֹרְשִׁין וַאֲפִלּוּ יוֹרְשֵׁי יוֹרְשִׁין. וְאִלּוּ אָמַר וּכְשֶׁתָּמוּת הַזְּקֵנָה הֲרֵי הֵן לְבִתִּי מֵעַכְשָׁו. הָיָה הַבַּעַל יוֹרֵשׁ אוֹתָן אַחַר מִיתַת אִשְׁתּוֹ:


When a person has a legal record composed giving property to his son after his death, the body of the property becomes the son's from the time this legal record is composed. The benefit from the property is retained by the father until he dies.

Accordingly, the father cannot sell this property, because it has already been given to his son. Nor can the son sell the property, because it is under the father's control.

If the father dies and there is produce attached to the ground on this property, it belongs to the son. The rationale is that a person feels a closeness to his son. If the produce has already become detached or it is ready to be harvested, it belongs to the other heirs.

If the father transgresses and sells the property, the sale is binding until he dies. When he dies, the son expropriates the property from the purchaser. If there was produce attached to the property, its worth should be evaluated and credited to the purchaser, and the son must pay him for it. If the produce was detached or ready to be harvested, it belongs to the purchaser.

If the son transgresses and sells the property, the purchaser does not receive anything until the father dies. If the son sold the property during the father's lifetime, the son died, and then the father dies, the purchaser takes possession of the property when the father dies. The sale of the property by the son is not nullified, because the father possesses only the right to benefit from the property, and possession of the right to benefit from a property is not the same as possession of the property itself.


הַכּוֹתֵב נְכָסָיו לִבְנוֹ וּלְאַחַר מוֹתוֹ. הֲרֵי הַגּוּף שֶׁל בֵּן מִזְּמַן הַשְּׁטָר וְהַפֵּרוֹת לָאָב עַד שֶׁיָּמוּת. לְפִיכָךְ הָאָב אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִמְכֹּר מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהֵן נְתוּנִין לַבֵּן. וְהַבֵּן אֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לִמְכֹּר מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהֵן בִּרְשׁוּת הָאָב. מֵת הָאָב וְהִנִּיחַ פֵּרוֹת מְחֻבָּרִין לַקַּרְקַע הֲרֵי הֵן שֶׁל בֵּן. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁדַּעְתּוֹ שֶׁל אָדָם קְרוֹבָה אֵצֶל בְּנוֹ. הָיוּ תְּלוּשִׁין אוֹ שֶׁהִגִּיעוּ לְהִבָּצֵר הֲרֵי הֵן שֶׁל יוֹרְשִׁין. עָבַר הָאָב וּמָכַר מְכוּרִין עַד שֶׁיָּמוּת. וּכְשֶׁיָּמוּת הָאָב מוֹצִיא הַבֵּן מִיַּד הַלָּקוֹחוֹת. וְאִם הָיוּ שָׁם פֵּרוֹת מְחֻבָּרִין שָׁמִין אוֹתָם לַלּוֹקֵחַ וְנוֹתֵן הַבֵּן דְּמֵיהֶם. הָיוּ תְּלוּשִׁין אוֹ שֶׁהִגִּיעוּ לְהִבָּצֵר הֲרֵי הֵן שֶׁל לוֹקֵחַ. עָבַר הַבֵּן וּמָכַר אֵין לַלּוֹקֵחַ כְּלוּם עַד שֶׁיָּמוּת הָאָב. מָכַר הַבֵּן בְּחַיֵּי הָאָב וּמֵת הַבֵּן וְאַחַר כָּךְ מֵת הָאָב. כְּשֶׁיָּמוּת הָאָב קָנָה הַלּוֹקֵחַ. שֶׁאֵין לָאָב אֶלָּא פֵּרוֹת וְקִנְיַן פֵּרוֹת אֵינוֹ כְּקִנְיַן הַגּוּף:


When the deed recording a gift given by a healthy person states that the gift takes effect "from today and after the person's death," it is considered to be a gift given by a sh'chiv me'ra. The implication is that although he acquires the body of the property from the day of the gift, he may not take possession of it and partake of its fruits until after the giver's death.


מַתְּנַת בָּרִיא שֶׁכָּתוּב בָּהּ מֵהַיּוֹם וּלְאַחַר מִיתָה. הֲרֵי הִיא כְּמַתְּנַת שְׁכִיב מֵרַע שֶׁאֵינוֹ קוֹנֶה אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה. שֶׁמַּשְׁמַע דְּבָרִים אֵלּוּ שֶׁאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁקָּנָה הַגּוּף מֵהַיּוֹם אֵינוֹ זוֹכֶה בּוֹ וְאוֹכֵל פֵּרוֹת אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה:


The following laws apply with regard to a deed recording a gift, which states that so and so should acquire a particular field after the death of the giver.

Whether or not the legal document records a kinyan, since it mentions a date and the giver was alive on that date, the date indicates that he transferred ownership of the property during his lifetime. The recipient may not take possession of it until after the giver's death.

This is certainly the intent. For if the giver's intent had been to transfer the property with this document after his death, he would not have dated it.

Therefore, even though the document does not state that the gift takes effect "from today and after the person's death," the recipient acquires the property after the giver's death.

The reason we write "from the present time" in a legal document although it is dated, is to clarify the matter, even though it is unnecessary.


שְׁטַר מַתָּנָה שֶׁכָּתוּב בּוֹ שֶׁיִּקְנֶה פְּלוֹנִי שָׂדֶה פְּלוֹנִית לְאַחַר מִיתָה בֵּין שֶׁהָיָה בַּשְּׁטָר קִנְיָן בֵּין שֶׁלֹּא הָיָה בּוֹ קִנְיָן. כֵּיוָן שֶׁכָּתוּב בּוֹ זְמַן וּבִזְמַן זֶה חַי הָיָה. הַזְּמַן מוֹכִיחַ שֶׁמֵּחַיִּים הִקְנָה לוֹ וְאֵינוֹ זוֹכֶה אֶלָּא לְאַחַר מִיתָה. שֶׁאִלּוּ הָיָה בְּדַעְתּוֹ לְהַקְנוֹת לוֹ בִּשְׁטָר זֶה לְאַחַר מִיתָה לֹא הָיָה כּוֹתֵב בּוֹ זְמַן. לְפִיכָךְ אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵין כָּתוּב בּוֹ מֵהַיּוֹם וּלְאַחַר מִיתָה קוֹנֶה לְאַחַר מִיתָה. וְזֶה שֶׁכּוֹתְבִין בְּכָל הַמַּתָּנוֹת וְהַמִּמְכָּרוֹת מֵעַכְשָׁו וְאַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיֵּשׁ בַּשְּׁטָר הַזְּמַן. לְהַרְוִיחַ הַדָּבָר כּוֹתְבִין בּוֹ אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁאֵינוֹ צָרִיךְ:


When a healthy person gives a gift and composes the deed recording it saying: "During my lifetime and in my death," it is a completely binding gift, taking effect during the person's lifetime, for it states: "During my lifetime." The fact that it also states: "And in my death," is as if it states: "from now until eternity." It is an embellishment of the document.


בָּרִיא שֶׁנָּתַן מַתָּנָה וְכָתַב בַּשְּׁטָר מֵחַיִּים וּבַמָּוֶת. הֲרֵי זוֹ מַתָּנָה גְּמוּרָה מֵחַיִּים שֶׁהֲרֵי כָּתוּב בּוֹ מֵחַיִּים. וְזֶה שֶׁכָּתוּב בּוֹ וּבַמָּוֶת כְּמִי שֶׁאוֹמֵר מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם וּכְמוֹ נוֹיֵי הַשְּׁטָר הוּא זֶה:


Perfectly righteous men and men of spiritual stature would not receive gifts from other men. Instead, they would trust in God, blessed be His name, and not in generous men. And Proverbs 15:27 states: "One who hates gifts will live."


הַצַּדִּיקִים הַגְּמוּרִים וְאַנְשֵׁי מַעֲשֶׂה לֹא יְקַבְּלוּ מַתָּנָה מֵאָדָם. אֶלָּא בּוֹטְחִים בַּה' בָּרוּךְ שְׁמוֹ לֹא בִּנְדִיבִים. וַהֲרֵי נֶאֱמַר (משלי טו כז) "וְשׂוֹנֵא מַתָּנֹת יִחְיֶה":

Blessed be God who grants assistance.

בְּרִיךְ רַחֲמָנָא דְּסַיְּעָן