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Shabbat Parashat Yitro 5778

Yitro | 18 Shevat 5778 | 03/02/2018

P'ninat Mishpat: Responsibilty of Mefakeiach for Contractors Flaws part I

The plaintiff (=pl) was doing major renovations and hired the defendant (=def) as a mefakeiach (private building inspector) for 30,000 shekels. Pl then signed a contract with two Palestinian contractors for 420,000 shekels. Def, who had been consulted regarding the choice of the contractors, also signed on that contract, although he was not referred to in it. Pl discovered several flaws with the contractors work and fired them and def before the work was completed, after the latter had received 20,000 shekels. Pl is suing def for 544,242 shekels for the flaws, claiming that def is responsible for them for a few reasons: def was in effect the general contractor (see discussion below); def recommended hiring the contractors without seeing their past work; after starting his work, def took on another job and stopped coming enough; specific mistakes were made that def should have caught. Def denies being the general contractor, saying he was no more than a mefakeiach. He suggested hiring the contractors because they were much cheaper than other options, and while he spoke with them and determined that they seemed to be professionally qualified, it was pls informed decision. A mefakeiach does not have to be present every day, and after taking a part-time job, he was still present enough. The flaws that he did not catch were trivial, and the bigger flaws would have been fixed by the contractors for free had they not been fired.


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Rivka Reena bat Gruna Natna

David Chaim ben Rassa

Lillian bat Fortune

Yafa bat Rachel Yente

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Yehoshafat Yecheskel ben Milka

Ro'i Moshe Elchanan ben Gina Devra

Together with all cholei Yisrael


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Tamuz 23 5777

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A weekly divrei Torah leaflet: A Glimpse at the Parasha, Ask the Rabbi, From the writings of Harav Avraham Yitzchak Hakohen Kook, ztl, Pninat Mishpat (Jewish Monetary Law).

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