The question? Can a get be coerced and, if so, who can be used to do the coercion?
The answer? Certainly not goyyim, not even the "goyishe" court system of the State of Israel, the very state that both empowers these rabbis and pays their salary.
A recent decision by the Supreme Rabbinic Court has set back women's legal rights in divorce cases by decades, claim feminist advocacy groups. However, a rabbinic court legal adviser says the decision is not new, but based on ancient Jewish texts and a long tradition that cannot be contested.
Last month, the supreme rabbinic court ruled that it was unlawful for a woman in the middle of divorce proceedings in a rabbinic court to appeal to a civil court to speed up the divorce's conclusion.
In the decision, Rabbi Hagai Izirer, Rabbi Menahem Hashai and Rabbi Zion Algrably ruled that if the civil court intervened, the writ of divorce (get) that the husband issued as a result would be null and void.
The rabbis, quoting talmudic and other early rabbinic literature, said that civil courts were considered "a gentile entity," even if the judges were Jewish, and were therefore disqualified from coercing the husband in any way to give a get.
The most common form of coercion is monetary torts. The civil court forces the husband to pay his wife damages for delaying the get.
"A coerced get is permitted only by Jews," said the Supreme Rabbinic Court in its 26-page decision. "Coercion by gentiles, including civil courts, is forbidden because they do not represent the will of the rabbis."
It added that "attorneys who deal in family law should be advised to weigh carefully their recommendations to clients to file damage claims in the family court for get-refusal. Such recommendations are tantamount to malpractice, and it is doubtful that attorneys could avoid such claims [of malpractice], even if they were to have their clients sign waivers to that effect."…