When There Are No Sons, Can a Daughter Say Kaddish For Her Father?
The Shvus Yaakov (2:93) says that when a person dies and has no sons, his daughters can say Kaddish for him. However this cannot be done in Shul. Rather he says, a Minyan should be made in the house and only there may she say Kaddish. In Prague there was a minhag that someone who died and only left daughters, the girls who were ages six or seven would say Kaddish in a side room in the afternoon where old men gathered to say Tehilim together. The Gesher HaChaim also brings that girls under Bas Mitzva may say Kaddish.
However this is not accepted practice today. The Chavas Yair (222) was from the early dissenters, and although acknowledging that a daughters Kaddish brings pleasure to the Neshama, it would lead to other customs and cause more bad than good.
The Mateh Efraim (Kaddish Yasom 4) says that even the father left in his Tzavaah that his daughters should say Kaddish, we must not listen to him, and she should not say Kaddish, not in Shul and not in her home. To accede to her father's wishes she should go to Shul and answer Amen to Kaddish with Kavana, and in that way she will fulfill her father's request.
Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.
Anonymous, Cincinnati, OH, 2013-02-24 20:38:58 I don't understand- What's wrong with women saying kaddish, in shul or otherwise? Is it a problem of modesty? So what is a person with just daughters to do; do they have to get some unrelated man to say kaddish?