We have been fortunate in that in this present generation the benches of the beis hamedrash have multiplied, along with the study of halachic subjects according to the method of tradition, in all sections of the Shulchan Oruch.
Chazal greatly praise the reverence and caution required in the area of Halacha and taught us that ruling Halacha is one of the most difficult procedures since aside from caution and purity of mind required of a scholar in ruling hetter and issur, one also requires great integrity, reliability and meticulousness in sifting through hearsay and judging between one instance and another.
Many are the Torah essays/writings in our time which quote halachic rulings which [the authors] heard from noted poskim past and present, or just gathering rulings, and even if they are occasionally beneficial for the sake of pilpulic argumentation, at any rate, one must be very careful in determining Halacha according to such hearsay lest it be misconstrued, whether a mistake in understanding the question, or a mistake in understanding the answer, which experience has shown to be sources of error. Similarly, many different factors may affect the weight of the ruling. Many rulings were issued applying specifically to particular circumstances of time, place and persons involved, which are not applicable to each one who asks or to each situation.
Therefore, one should not hasten to rule on a matter which comes before him on the basis of this type of responsa but should personally investigate the issue himself if he is capable of it, or should ask veteran rabbonim who studied those subjects in depth and are replete with yiras Shomayim.
In the merit of our prudence in matters of Halacha, we pray that we be spared any mishap ch'v through laxity on our part.
A. L. Shteinman
I join myself to this, and it is included in the exhortation of Chazal to ask ke'inyan and answer kehalachah, and this impossible except by knowing ??? according to the foundations of the Shulchan Oruch and one should not, choliloh, rule in something that is not clear to the one being asked himself.
Shmuel Halevi Wosner