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  • Family and Society
  • Yichud

hilchos yichud in the office

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Rabbi David Sperling

Elul 6, 5774
Question
I work in an office which has another office in the same building which non Jews work in. I am in my office’s part of the building with the door open and the outside door to the highway open.My boss is in the room next to mine.There are no other Jews here now- is that yichud?
Answer
Shalom, Thank you for your question. The laws of yichud depend on many factors, and it isn't totally clear to me the exact set-up you are describing, so I can only give you a general answer – for an exact ruling you will have to turn to a Rabbi to whom you discuss all the details with. In general, if there is a secluded place it is forbidden for a man and a woman to be alone. The definition of a secluded place will depend mainly on whether a person will feel that they are likely to be interrupted by someone coming along or not. So, when you write that the door to the highway is open – this could very well permit the situation, on the condition that the highway is one which people pass by often, and could well look into the office from. If, on the other hand, it is a deserted country road that no one every passes on, the open door will not help you. Also, the situation will depend on the time of day or night – at certain times (late at night for example) it could be that no one comes past, and this will create a situation of yichud. The last factor to be considered is the number of people in the office – are there a lot of people around or not? So, with these issues in mind, I can only again suggest that you turn to a Rabbi with your individual situation, and get a ruling from him. Blessings.
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