Can One Report a Driver to Police for Grabbing a Designated Handicap Parking Spot?

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The week BaKehilla Magazine reports that a question was presented to HaGaon HaRav Chaim Kanievsky Shlita regarding a case that occurred in Lakewood, New Jersey. The case involves a “perfectly healthy driver” who after realizing there was no parking available, and he was running late for minyan, he took a designated handicapped parking space. Those who witnessed the driver’s actions were angered, and “they sent an important shaliach” to bring the case to Rav Kanievsky for direction.

They wanted to know if the tefilos of the driver who stole the parking pace were valid, and if they may report him to police so he receives a summons for parking in a spot designated for handicapped motorists.

Rav Kanievsky Shlita is quoted as saying “certainly he did not act properly. Such a person, who steals a parking space in order to daven must recite a תפילה נדבה in place of his first tefilla.” Regarding reporting him to police, Rav Chaim did not state how one may act l’chatchila, stating “if they already reported him one may not castigate them for their actions.”

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

23 COMMENTS

  1. All too often people take handicapped spots at my shul, not because they are running late, but because there are no other open spots in the lot, and they are too lazy to park on the street. These offenders are usually among the younger people; the older people have enough respect for others not to take those spots, in case handicapped people show up after them.

  2. Att Yatzmich.

    Many people abuse using these spots. That is why we had to go to R Chaim Kanievski. I dont know who went to R Chaim as reported by BaKehilla Magazine.

    But i know of someone else who contact R Chaim and asked the questions in regards to going to Daven and or learn and illegaly parking in handicapped spots. This also causes the person who truly needs it to daven alone or not able to get out. R CHAIM PSAK- MITZVA HABA BAEVERA and he suggested to look in his sefer Tamay DKRA which states clearly that the learning is no different than Bilam who was able to grab chochma but its not torah in shamayim.

    In regards to calling the police- R Chaim responded – “if someone calls, he is NOT a moser”

  3. R Dovid Cohen said its Gezalah Harabim to park in the spot and especially those who throw out the handicapped signs that they legally must have. and one can call the police 100%.

    R Shmuel Fuerst- One can call the police if someone is parked in a handicapped spot you are trying to enter- it is asur to use.One is not a moser.

    R Yakov Forcheimer -One can call the police if someone is parked in a handicapped spot you are trying to enter- it is asur to use. One is not a moser.

    R Shmuel Kamenetzki- issue of ben adam lchavero and ben adom l’makom. One is not a moser.

    And as Stated earlier R Chaim Kaneivski psak – Its Mitzva haba beaveria for anyone to park in such a spot if they are using it illegally. One is not a moser if he calls the police.

    THANK YOU TO RABBI PAYSACH KROHN FOR SPEAKING ABOUT THIS AT THE AGUDAH CONVENTION AND ELSEWHERE.

    every shul store yeshiva wedding hall drs office is obligated by their state law to have the required amount of handicapped spots. If its missing the police cannot ticket- but you should inform them to report it to the local inspection/construction department as the spots must be maintained FOREVER in both Public and private properties.

  4. I personnaly faxed Reb Chaim with the following 2 questions 1. Is this person yotze tefillah /learning, while parked there? His response,
    “Mitzvah Haba’ah b’Aveira”.
    2. Is it mesirah to report him to the police? His response
    “He who informs is not considerd a moser”. When I asked Horav Shafran from Bnei Brak formally Lakewood re; this problem he said why aren’t the Rabbonim in town putting a stop to this? He also paskind it is permitted to call the State to report that the officials in town are not fulfilling their resposibility.

  5. Let me add to my previous comment. I have the fax with the questions and Rav Chaim’s response. His brother in law Hagaon Horav Yitzchok Zilberstein personally asked the quetions and recorded Reb Chaim’s response on the fax.

  6. Truth be told, Handicapped Parking is a scam. 98% of “Handicapped” drivers, walk perfectly well and exhibit no signs of Handicap. Most and I say most are able to walk just fine after exiting the vehicle. It has been abused to no end and the State issues Handicap permits to anyone that had a doctor request. If I woke up tomorrow morning with a headache and asked my doctor to submit a request, he would more than glady cooperate. Its a scam, plain and simple and for an extra way of fundraising for the city is to issue steep fines for offenders

  7. To No. 2

    Its not “bothering” the Gedolim to ask them shaiylos on what you consider “mundane” and “rediculous” questions. Thats what they learn for…so they can answer a broad range of shailos from the mundane to the profound. I doubt Rav Kanievsky, shlita, or any other gadol feels “bothered” when someone poses a real life question of concern to many yidden. If our grandmothers could run to the rebbe of their village in the alte heim eruv shabbos with a chicken to question its kashruth, we can certainly pose the contemporary version of a “chicken question” and expect a thoughtful answer as the rav provided here.

  8. Its truthfully not right. A few months ago I had shattered my ankle and tore a ligament in foot. It bothered me whenever I’d see people using handicapped-designated things for no (apparent), reason.

  9. why is this different than the earlier story of offering a reward to catch a hit and run driver in Lakewood. Are we allowed to help the police catch the hit and run driver…he/she could be Jewish?

  10. You’re right. Better to just take a baseball bat and smash the offender’s headlights, tail lights, and windshield. Maybe then people who pull these stunts would get the message.

  11. to #2 yatzmich
    oih! this isnt a “ridiculous question”
    you r obviously not handicapped yourself, baruch H’.
    but fogive me – perhaps ur a little heartcapped.

  12. I normally don’t respond to other peoples comments however #8 Git Meshiga kishmo keyn hu.There are many reasons why people are considered handicapped, some more obvious than others. I would think that if this handicapped person could get out of his car and walk to the shul, you would say B”H his difficulties at least allow him that, and not to use it as a sign that he is not in pain. Regarding your personnal physician, I strongly urge you to find another one, for if he is willing to lie about that, then who knows if you can trust him in a medical problem or diagnosis.

  13. # 10 May I ask is your name HoRav because you are a Rav,disagreeing with all the gedolay hador and poskim,or is it the first word of the sentence “horav es riveinu” which means “who takes up our grievance” however from your response I would translate it as meaning “HoRav”
    He who adds riv?

  14. #17 Horav Chaim does have children that have faxes. Those that are very close to Rav Chaim are given the fax number so their questiones can receive an immediate response. However what you wrote is irrelevant, because the actual fax is in my possesion.

  15. Just for those who think some people are perfectly healthy but somehow have handicap permits:
    Someone who has a cardiac problem may be eligible for a permit because walking more than a block can cause chest pain (angina). You don’t have to be old for this to be true.
    There are similar instances of someone with specific lung and breathing diseases and with cancer patients on chemo.
    If you don’t have a permit, don’t park in one of those spots – even if you think it’s just a money making scheme of the govt. you’re wrong and the reasoning of the govt has nothing to do what’s right and wrong in this situation.

  16. Parking illegally to be on time for Shachris is OK if it is on a day when tachanun is said – because you can seek forgiveness less than an hour after the sin.

  17. Here is what I leave on their windshield –
    You are parked in a Handicap parking spot.
    I hope that you never have to really need one.
    Some people do.