More Discussions for this daf
1. The Market of the Rabbis 2. The Market of the Rabbis 3. Eidus regarding a lost object
4. Lost objects 5. Rov regarding a lost object 6. Rabim Metzuyin Sham

D. Zusman asked:

What is the din if one finds a bezekcard in the telephone or a quarter in a telephone in the states?

The Kollel replies:

I heard from someone who asked Rav Elyashev, shlit'a, about the BezekCard question. Rav Elyashev said that the number of Sichot on the card can be a Siman, and therefore one should be Machriz that he found a phonecard (in the way that we are Machriz an Aveidah today). If nobody claims it (within two weeks, which is the time period given for Hachrazos today), then one either gives the value of the card to Tzedakah (as a Zechus for the original owner) and one keeps the card (Rav Elyashev), or one writes down the amount that it is worth and puts the note among his important documents, and then he may keep and use the phonecard for himself, and when Eliyahu comes, or when someone comes to claim the card, the finder will give him the amount of money that he wrote down (Rav Rubin and others).

Regarding money found in a phone (or food/drink machine), since it is a coin (which has no Siman, and one is Memashmesh b'Kiso all the time) we may assume that the owner was Me'ya'esh (especially when his money got stuck in the machine). The question is that perhaps the phone company (or owner of the food machine) was Koneh the money when it was placed into the machine, through Kinyan Chatzer. The simple assumption is that the owner of the machine was not Koneh the money, since it is a Chatzer she'Einah Mishtameres, and the owner is not Omed b'Tzidah. However, the Gemara teaches that when someone is specifically Makneh an item to the owner of the Chatzer (in contrast to a Metzi'ah being found there), such as by giving a Matanah, then it is not necessary to have the owner standing there, and the Chatzer (even though it is Einah Mishtameres; see Insights to Bava Metzia 12:1) is Koneh the item. Hence, if the person put the money into the machine with express intent that the money should become the property of the machine's owner, then it could be that the finder may not keep it.

As always, please ask your local Halachic authority.

Yisroel Shaw