Onen Restrictions

An onen is prohibited from doing positive mitzvot so as not to be distracted from taking care of the dead body.
An onen may not:
  • Do any positive commandment (no blessings, prayers, shema…).
  • Eat meat or drink wine (until after the burial).
  • Work or operate a business.
Note Before the relative dies, if possible, the onen should sell his business for whatever days he or she will be an onen and in shiv'a. Otherwise, the owner may have to close the business until shiv'a is over.
Note If there will be a large financial loss, consult a rabbi.  A large loss is subjective to the individual's actual wealth and also to that person's perception of what is a large loss. Consult a rabbi for how much constitutes a large loss.
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