An Inside Look at Halachic Jurisprudence

New Journal from the Beth Din of America and RIETS Sheds Light on Practices of Rabbinical Courts

The Beth Din of America (BDA), in collaboration with the Rabbi Norman Lamm Yadin Yadin Kollel of YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), recently published its first journal for spring 2012. The Journal of the Beth Din of America, sponsored by the Michael Scharf Publication Trust of RIETS/Yeshiva University Press, contains articles on Jewish jurisprudence and beth din practice, with a particular emphasis on the policies and practices of the BDA—North America’s most active rabbinical court.

Each issue will include actual din torah or decisions rendered by the BDA (appropriately anonymized and approved for publication by the involved parties), exposing readers to the practices of contemporary beth din and the intellectual foundations for its work. The journal will primarily feature articles by dayanim [judges] of the BDA.

Topics covered in the inaugural issue range from “The Prenuptial Agreement: Recent Developments” by Rabbi Mordechai Willig, Rabbi Dr. Sol Roth Professor of Talmud and Contemporary Halacha at RIETS and Segan Av Beit Din at BDA, to “Jewish Law, Civil Procedure: A Comparative Study” by Rabbi Yona Reiss, Max and Marion Grill Dean of RIETS and Chaver Beth Din at BDA.

“It is our hope that this journal and the study it enables will serve as a vehicle for the clarification and dissemination of the Torah’s laws relating to the beth din process,” said Rabbi Yaacov Feit’02YC, ’06R, ’06A, who along with Rabbi Shlomo Weissmann ’92YUHS, ’96YC, ’03R, serves as co-editor of the journal.

Since its inception nearly 50 years ago, BDA has been recognized as one of the nation’s pre-eminent rabbinic courts. It serves the Jewish community of North America as a forum for obtaining Jewish divorces, confirming personal status and adjudicating commercial disputes stemming from divorce, business and community issues.

For more information or to download the Journal of the Beth Din of America, visit

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