From the Rav’s Desk: Benching on the couch as opposed to by one’s seat by the table

  1. Question: [Monday, 27th Iyar 5781]

Is it permitted for one to bentch on a couch if it is in the same room as the meal or must one return to his actual seat to bentch. This often happens on Shabbos that we go to the couch prior to the end of the meal and would like to know if it’s permitted to Bencth there.


From the letter of the law, so long as you are in the same room as the area where the meal took place, then it is even initially permitted for you to bench anywhere in that room, even if it is a very large room and you are by the opposite corner from the corner where you ate, and even if you cannot see the original area of where you ate. Thus, in your scenario that your couch is found in the same room as the meal table, then it is permitted for you to bench while on the couch, and there is no obligation for you to return to your actual seat. Nonetheless, some Poskim write that it is proper for you to always try to Bench by the table that you ate.


Sources: Admur 184:1; M”A 184:1; Chayeh Adam 47:5-6; M”B 184:1 and Shaar Hatziyon 184:2; Ketzos Hashulchan 44 footnote 1; Kaf Hachaim 184:1; See Chayeh Adam 47:5-6 and Kaf Hachaim 184:1 that only in a time of need should one Bentch in another area of the room otherwise he should bench in the actual place that he ate; However, Admur writes that one may even initially do so, Vetzaruch Iyun why we don’t initially require him to bench by the table in order so he sees the bread which is supposed to remain on the table until after benching; See also regarding switching areas within the same room by a before blessing: Admur 178:1; Michaber 178:1-2; Chayeh Adam 59:4; Kaf Hachaim 178:3 and 10

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