Q. If one realizes during SE (Shemone Ezre) that he is wearing a hat that is not his own, what should he do? (accidentally took someone else’s hat) Should he leave during SE and put back the hat? Or should he put it back only after davening? May he walk in front of a person who is davening to put it back? Does he need to ask mechila from the person whose hat he took (no idea who it is as there is no name), or can he just put it back)? Maybe he should put up a sign asking?
A. Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is that one may assume that given the circumstances of one already reciting the amida, that the owner of the hat may prefer the unintentional borrower to finish his amida and also not transgress on walking in front of someone davening shemone-esreh, while wearing his hat. The Rov added that the above may apply only to one who davens a normal amida and not to an extended long one, as people do mind others wearing hats and clothing that can be infused and permeated with their sweat. He also recommended if possible, to take off the hat immediately and placing it next to him, during the amida.
Rabbi A. Bartfeld as revised by Horav Shlomo Miller Shlit’a