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Secular Law Enforcement of the Heter 'Iska
Kenneth H. Ryesky, Esq.

Appendix: A Model Shtar 'Iska Document:

The following model document is an English adaptation from a text found in Ginat Veradim. It also includes provisions, inserted by the author, for resolution of disputes by a Beth Din. The model document is provided for informational purposes only as an illustrative specimen for the accompanying article, and is not necessarily the appropriate form to use for all occasions. Different Shtr 'Iska texts appear elsewhere, including Chapter 40 of Nachlat Shiva and Chapter 143 of Chochmat Adam. Individual rabbanim may have compelling reason to prefer one specific text over another in any given situation; therefore, a competent authority should be consulted and advised of all relevant facts whenever such a document is drafted.

In our presence, A, the manager-borrower, acknowledged receipt from B, the investor-lender, of the sum of $1,000.00 as an investment agreement for a period of l2 months. A and B have agreed that A will undertake to do business with said sum during the said period using any type of investment opportunity in order to make a profit and prevent a loss, heaven forbid. All profit that Hashern, blessed be He, confers upon this investment during the said period will be divided equally between the two. Similarly, all losses, heaven forbid, will be borne equally by both parties, may they be blessed. A acknowledges having received $1.00 as wages, paid in advance, as compensation for his effort and work during said period.

The two parties have agreed that A will protect the money by keeping it in a place safe and protected from Ioss, fire, theft, etc. Should he violate that condition, he shall assume responsibility for any misadventures that may befall the investment, even its taking by armed thieves.

The parties further agree that the profit to which B, the investor-lender, is entitled will not exceed $100.00. Any further sum will belong to A, the manager-borrower, in addition to the share to which he is entitled. Should the profit to which B, the investor-lender, is entitled be less than $100.00, A, the manager, agrees to take a severe oath at the request of B, the investor-lender, that to his knowledge the investment has not earned enough to entitle B to $100.00. If the manager-borrower, from time to time, uses small amounts of the investment capital for his own needs, he is not to be considered as a thief, even if the money is not returned at the designated time.

A and B have formalized all of the above by act of contract. They state that this agreement is not "asmachta" or a contract written for practice. They both agree to complete and satisfy all the aforestated particulars.

A and B agree that any and all disputes relating to or arising from this agreement or the performance or nonperformanee thereof shall be submitted to a Beth Din for resolution in accordance with Halacha or Jewish Law. The decision of the Beth Din shall be binding upon the parties, and, once rendered, fully enforceable in all courts. This provision for resolution of disputes shall survive the agreement and continue to apply, regardless of whether the period of the agreement has expired.

Investor-Lender: Witness:
Manager-Borrower: Witness:

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