Soliciting Information: Preconditions

Soliciting Information: Preconditions

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  • December 19, 2018

As it is forbidden to cause another Jew to transgress, one may not solicit information unless it is clearly permissible for the other person to offer such information. Thus, in order to solicit information, the following conditions must be met:

(1) The person from whom information is being sought is not known to fabricate stories about others, to read into their behavior in an unjust manner, or to draw hurried conclusions about their character;

(2) And the person is not known to exaggerate in his descriptions of events;

(3) and it can be assumed that when informed that the information is necessary, he will not speak out of malice toward the subject; (thus, one may not seek information from a person who is not on good terms with the subject); and

(4) it is clear that the information is necessary for a constructive purpose, and that there is no alternative to soliciting such information.

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