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Legitimate question?

Your RHO opens 1N 14-16.  After two passes, partner balances.  You end up declaring and late in the play are trying to figure out whether the missing HCP are split 7-16 or 9-14.

Your opponents are a long time partnership and play together frequently online.  You believe they have played many thousands of boards together.  Is it legitimate to ask your RHO how often, in his estimate, his partner passes 1N with 9 HCP?

In fact, at the table, I asked RHO if partner ever passes with 9HCP and the answer was "We just play bridge; it's a silly question."  

I'm interested in hearing interpretations of relevant laws that address this issue, and, if necessary, how the laws might be altered to clarify this and similar situations.

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