Divorcee – Husband’s Customs

July 10, 2020 | by Rabbi Pinchas Waldman

I am divorced now. Do I still have to follow the customs of my ex-husband – such as not eating out on Passover?

The Aish Rabbi Replies

Your question is an interesting issue. I would say that by the letter of the law you are not bound by your ex’s customs at all. They were never your customs, just ones you observed on account of your husband. On the other hand, it could be argued, when a woman willingly marries – knowing she will be bound by her husband’s customs – that could be construed as a form of accepting those customs herself. Thus, more proper would be that any practice you followed during your marriage which has a basis in Jewish law should be annulled. The well-known custom not to eat out on Passover is an example of this.

The process for annulling a vow is quite simple. It requires only an ad hoc court of three. You should gather three religious men and ask them to absolve you of any custom from your marriage you no longer wish to observe. Also, you only have to specify the customs you are annulling to one of the three “judges”.

(Sources: Shulchan Aruch Y.D. 214:1, 228:14.)


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