Heter Meah Rabbonim

Heter Meah Rabbonim 
(permission of 100 Rabbis)

Information needed please

In those (rare) cases where a woman refuses to accept delivery of a Get (divorce document issued under Jewish religious law), there is a procedure available whereby a man can re-marry even though a Get has not been delivered. It requires the permission of 100 Rabbis, and is thus very rarely used.

The Heter (permission) can also be issued in a situation where a woman is considered to be psychologically unfit or incapable of accepting delivery of a Get.

It should be noted that this method can be used by a man whose spouse is causing difficulties over a Get, but no such remedy is available to a woman whose husband refuses to have a Get written and delivered.

Apart from being one-sided, the idea of this permission raises all sorts of possibilities for abuse. For example, it might be possible for a man who wants to remarry (but does not want his wife to be able to do so) to have his wife designated insane. She would be unable to accept delivery of a Get, but the husband might be able to use a Heter Meah Rabbonim to permit him, but not her, to remarry.

Because the procedure is rarely used (but not unknown), there is little information about cases of a Heter. If anyone has information about actual cases where a Heter has been issued, could they please contact the Agunot Campaign and give as many details as possible. If we can collect enough information about use and abuses of the Heter, we may be able to help others avoid some of the problems.

All information you pass to us will, of course, be treated in the strictest confidence.

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