ONE WHO FOUND LOAN DOCUMENTS (Yerushalmi Halachah 6 Daf 4a)

משנה מצא שטרי חוב אם יש בהן אחריות נכסים לא יחזיר אם אין בהן אחריות נכסים יחזור מפני שאין בין דין נפרעין מהן דברי רבי מאיר


(Mishnah - R. Meir): If a person found loan documents, if they contain a declaration that the borrower's fields are on lean, he should not return them (to the lender. We are concerned that the debt has already been paid and that the two parties are in cahoots, so that the lender will be able to repossess fields that were sold on during the time of the loan and then split the money with the borrower); otherwise, he should return them, as Beis Din will not allow collection of the loan from the borrower's fields..

וחכ''א בין כך ובין כך לא יחזיר מפני שבית דין נפרעין מהן:


Chachamim: Either way, the documents should not be returned, since Beis Din will allow collection from the borrower's fields (as his fields are on lean even without specifically writing so in the document).

[דף ד עמוד ב] גמרא תני בשם רבי מאיר (בין שטר שיש בו אחריות נכסים. ובין) שטר שאין בו אחריות נכסים. [אינו] גובה [לא מנכסים משועבדים ולא] מנכסין בני חורין.


(Gemara - Beraisa - R. Meir): One may not use a document in which the borrower's land is not on lean to collect from land that was sold on, nor to collect from land that was not sold on. (Note: A significant change of text was made by the commentators since the original text was severely problematic.)

על דעתיה דרבי מאיר לאי זה דבר הוא מחזיר.


Question: According to R. Meir, what is the purpose of returning the document - what use does it have to the lender?

לצור על פי צלוחיתו


Answer: To use as a bottle cap.

רב אמר יורש כמשועבד. כשם שמלוה בעדים אינה נגבית ממשועבדין כך אינה נגבית מן היורשין.


Rav: An inheritor (who inherited the property of the borrower) is like one who bought land from him. Just as one who lends (only) with witnesses (but without a document) cannot collect from land that was sold on; so too he cannot collect from the borrower's inheritors.

שמואל אמר דאיקני אינו גובה ממשועבדין


Shmuel: Only the land that was owned by the borrower at the time of the loan is on lean, but not land that was acquired afterwards, even if the borrower stipulated to that effect. Therefore, if he sold on land that was acquired afterwards, it cannot be collected from the buyer as payment. (Note: This entry follows the explanation of the Ridbaz.)

[דף ג עמוד ב (עוז והדר)] הא מבני חרי גבי.


Deduction: This means that if such a piece of land was not sold on, it could be collected from the borrower.

הכא את מר גובה והכא את מר אינו גובה.


Question: Here you say that he can collect and here you say that he cannot?! (In the Beraisa, R. Meir stated that when a document cannot be used to collect land on lean that was sold on, it also cannot be used to collect land that was not sold on. But here you say that for a document that included future land, you cannot collect if it was sold on but you can collect if it was not sold on!)

לא דמי מי ששיעבד מקצת למי שלא שיעבד כל עיקר.


Answer: (The reasoning of R. Meir is that since he waives his right to land sold on, he also waives his right to land that was not sold on. But here he definitely put some of his land on lean (i.e. the land that he owned at the time of the loan) and did not waive his rights.

א''ר לעזר שאני אומר כתב ללוות ולא לווה


(The Mishnah taught that one should not return the document as Beis Din will allow collection from the borrower's fields. What is the problem with this?) R. Elazar said the concern is that it was written to be used to borrow but the loan was never actually carried out.

[דף ה עמוד א] א''ר לעזר אם היה הלווה מודה הרי זה יחזיר.


R. Elazar: If the borrower agrees, it can be returned to the lender.

א''ר לעזר אם הוחזק השטר ביד המלוה הרי זה יחזיר


R. Elazar: If the document was previously known to be in the hands of the lender, it can be returned to him.

ותליתהון מתברן.


All of these three statements of R. Elazar are disproved by the Beraisa (in Halachah 7).

וחכמים אומרים בין כך ובין כך לא יחזיר.


The Mishnah taught that according to the Chachamim, whether or not there is land on lean that was sold on, the document should not be returned.

רבי אבהו בשם רבי יוחנן מפני קינוניא.


R. Abahu citing R. Yochanan: (Disagrees with R. Elazar in (k)) because the lender and borrower might be in cahoots to have the land that was sold on reclaimed from the buyer.

רבי יסא בשם רבי יוחנן אם היה זמנו יוצא לבו ביום יחזיר:


R. Yasa citing R. Yochanan: If the date of the loan written in the document was the day that it was found, it should be returned.