Question:

16 Av 5777 – August 8, ’17

I am working at a Kitchen Cabinet place, where there are set rules that I cannot allow delivery of merchandise before receiving payment, if the customer was not granted credit in advance. Especially if the customer bought from us before, and we had bad experiences collecting payment.

A customer, who bought from us in the past, who we had serious difficulties collecting payment, ordered from us again. When we scheduled delivery, the secretary told the customer that payment is due before deliveyr. The customer said he is faxing/emailing a credit card payment, and based on that, the merchandise went out for delivery. I then realized that he has no intentions of sending the payment. So I ordered the delivery personal to turn around, and canceled delivery.

The customer got very angry, and after he paid, and we delivered the merchandise, he left a very bad review on the web against the company and especially against me, the employee, who has to follow rules.

Is it permissible according to Halacha to slander someone in public like this?

What does he has to do to correct the slander against me?

Do I have to forgive him before he corrects the bad name he caused me?

Please advise.

Thank you.

Answer:

I don’t know the specifics of the case and it is incorrect for me to say anything definitive before hearing both sides of the story. But based solely on what you are writing the halacha would be that the person does not have the right to leave a negative review on the website, the reason being is that a person may not speak lashon hora, unless the correct conditions are met. One of the conditions to speak lashon hora l’toeles is that the person ws already approached to correct his ways and he didn’t, and it doesn’t sound like that condition was met. What he has to do to correct the slander is not really applicable to you, but it would entail removing the previous post and changing it with a positive one. 

Regarding being mochel the person, obviously it is better to be mochel him, however you do not have to, because when a person is spreading bad rumors about someone else they don’t have to be mochel until the person stops spreading the bad rumor.

 Having said that, this is all very technical, nevertheless it is the correct thing, and sound business advice to try and make up with the person instead of digging your heels in and finding out if you are right or not. It will be good for the business, and your job at the business, and for your personal peace to try and make up with the person. This way all of these questions will hopefully not be applicable.

 May H-shem help you and that something should be able to be worked out.

Sources:

Cofetz Chaim Hilchos rechilus chap. 10, Rema O:CH 6-6-1.

Tags: lashon hora

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