The translation of Heter Iska is ‘partnership clause’.
The Torah strictly forbids the collection or payment of interest on a loan, granted from one Jew to another. Given that law, there is a procedure, called HETER ISKA (“partnership clause”) by which it is permitted to profit from funds (monies) extended to one’s fellow.
A HETER ISKA contract stipulates that the money is not a loan but an investment in a joint business venture, with profits to be shared between the owner of the capital and the one who has been granted the right to use it and deal with it.
The key question about a HETER ISKA is the following: Why is interest on a loan forbidden while profit sharing on an investment is permitted?
Legally, the difference is that in the case of a loan the money is no longer the property of the lender. From the moment the borrower receives it, it is his in every respect (on the premise that he assumes the obligation to make a payment for the same amount to the lender at some future date).
So, if the lender were to collect a fee or percentage, he, the lender, would be charging interest for money that was lent, something the Torah forbids.
When there is a HETER ISKA agreement, the money remains the property of the investor (in partnership with the one to whom the money has been entrusted) and the compensation he receives is not “free profit,” but profit that his investment is currently generating.
A PRUZBUL is a form that one fills out during the observance of the Shemittah – Sabbatical year.
Any debts that are unpaid at the conclusion of the last day of the Shemittah year are canceled. Even if a borrower wishes to repay his debt, the lender may not accept it unless he reminds the borrower that the debt has been canceled and the borrower still insists on giving him the money “as a gift.”
At the same time, the Torah forbids us to refrain from lending money for fear of Shemittah canceling the loan and commands us to lend, despite the possibility that we may not be paid back.
As the Shemittah year has, over the years, become a rabbinic law, one can circumvent this lender/borrower issue. Many have the custom to make a PRUZBUL before Rosh Hashanah immediately prior to the Shemittah year, to be able to collect payment throughout the Shemittah year. Once the PRUZBUL has been made, any additional loans will require an additional PRUZBUL.
Others make a PRUZBUL at the end of the seventh year, just before the loans are cancelled. And finally, others make the PRUZBUL twice, once before the Shemittah year, and once again just before it concludes.
Halachic Medical Directive for Quebec
A medical directive is an advance healthcare directive, also known as living will or health care proxy. It is a legal document in which a person specifies what actions should be taken for their health if they are no longer able to make decisions for themselves because of illness or incapacity.
A living will, which can be very specific or very general, is a written document that specifies what types of medical treatment are desired.
More specific living wills may include information regarding an individual’s desire for such services such as analgesia (pain relief), antibiotics, hydration, feeding and the use of ventilators or cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
A health care proxy is a legal document in which an individual designates another person to make health care decisions if he or she is rendered incapable of making their wishes known.
The health care proxy has the same rights to request or refuse treatment that the individual would have if capable of making and communicating decisions.
Such a document is recommended for any patient who may be unable to make his or her wishes known during a long medical confinement.
Halachic Medical Directive For Quebec: