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Collecting tzedkah for a yeshiva and pocketing it to cover owed wages


Can someone who works for a yeshiva, and is owed a lot of back pay, collect for the yeshiva let’s say on Purim, and pocket what is owed without ever giving it to the yeshiva. I am aware of the Rama in Yoreh Deah 253:12 that doesn’t allow debt to be collected from tzedaka given to an individual. Would the same apply to a yeshiva? Would perhaps to phrase that the collection is to cover back pay for the yeshiva help? Thank you.



It is permitted for him to collect money for the Yeshiva, which is a needy cause, and then keep the money for himself, since the school owes him the money, he is no different than all the other creditors that the Yeshiva has.

Regarding the Rema that you are quoting, I think you are referring to the Rema in Yoreh Deah 257-5, and the Shach 12. The topic they are talking about over there is using a person’s own maaser money and deducting what is owed to him without actually giving the tzedakah from what he would have to give to tzedakah. Even that instance is controversial, and numerous poskim permit it. (See the following links ) However, in your situation, you are not using the maaser money that you owe to pay the poor persons debt, rather you are collecting tzedakah for the poor person, which is not your tzedakah money. Then you are taking it for the debts owed to you. Understandably, you have to inform the school what you did, and let them know that they should deduct the amount that you took from the sum that they owe you.

Best wishes

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