Q: I suggested someone to my friend. A shadchan followed through with the families in concluding the shidduch. Am I entitled to part of the shidduch fee?
A: Strictly speaking, some say that the brokerage or shadchan fee is only for closing the deal, so that the initiator is not entitled. Others say that if the initiator’s efforts were essential in enabling the shadchan to conclude the shidduch, he is entitled to part; even if an additional shadchan played an essential role in the middle, he is entitled to part of the fee (Pischei Teshuvah, C.M. 185:3).
Regardless, poskim write that the practice is to give a share to the shadchan who initiated. Some write further that the practice is to give to the initiator even if he merely suggested the name to the parties without further effort. Some add that even if others had suggested the shidduch, the initiator is entitled to his part, since the shidduch began through his efforts (Aruch Hashulchan 185:12; Pischei Choshen, Sechirus 14:8).