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cases. While the decisions are not altogether in harmony, a part of the apparent conflict in the conclusions reached may be explained by the difference in the phraseology employed in the provisions of the policies.

In the following cases where the insured took poison by mistake, the exceptions indicated were held to include death from such a cause, and a recovery on the policy was therefore denied. McGlother v. Providence Mut. Acci. Co. (1898) 32 C. C. A. 318, 60 U. S. App. 705, 89 Fed. 685 (where the policy provided that it should not cover death "resulting wholly or in part from hernia . . or disease, or from poison, contact with poisonous substances"); Early v. Standard Life & Acci. Ins. Co. (1897) 113 Mich. 58, 67 Am. St. Rep. 445, 71 N. W. 500) (where it was provided that the policy did not cover death resulting wholly or partly, directly or indirectly," from any of the following acts, causes, or conditions when affected by any such act, cause, or condition," and among the causes were included "poisons, contact with poisonous substances"); Hill v. Hartford Acci. Ins. Co. (1880) 22 Hun (N. Y.) 187 (where liability was excepted for death "by the taking of poison"); Pollock v. United States Mut. Acci. Asso. (1883) 102 Pa. 230, 48 Am. Rep. 204 (provision that policy should not extend to death or disability which might have been caused "by the taking of poison"); Kennedy v. Ætna L. Ins. Co. (1903) 31 Tex. Civ. App. 509, 72 S. W. 602 (where the policy excepted liability for death "resulting wholly or partially, directly or indirectly, from any of the following causes . . voluntarily or involuntarily taking poison"); Cole v. Accident Ins. Co. (1887) 61 L. T. N. S. (Eng.) 227 (where there was a proviso that the insurance should not extend to death by poison).

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The court in Kennedy v. Ætna L. Ins. Co. (Tex.) supra, said: "It is a general rule of construing insurance policies where there is any ambiguity that renders the terms susceptible of two constructions, to give that construction which is most favorable to the insured, always adhering to the

principle that in interpreting contracts the inquiry should be, what obligations the parties intended to assume, giving to the language used its usual signification in connection with the subject-matter and the circumstances under which it was made. Thus construing the contract under consideration, is the company exempted from liability, the deceased having come to his death by unintentionally taking poison? The allegations of the petition show that death was produced by an accident. The policy was issued to cover accidents, and unless the exemption clause is sufficiently broad and comprehensive as to cover such an accident, then the company should be held liable. The courts which have passed upon similar clauses are not in harmony, some of them going to the extreme limit in construing them against the companies. There is no reasonable theory upon which the conflict can be reconciled. We will, therefore, follow that line which, in our opinion, conforms to the well-recognized principles governing the construction of contracts. Death having resulted from the taking of poison, the main contention arises from that portion of the clause which exempts the company from liability for death resulting from the 'voluntary or involuntary taking poison.' The appellant contends that the terms 'voluntary' and 'involuntary' as used in the policy do not include the 'accidental' taking of poison. The taking of poison in this instance, being unintentional, was not a voluntary taking as that term is used in the policy, therefore the taking was accidental. The taking of poison being accidental, liability would accrue unless such an accidental taking is excluded by the term 'involuntary The definition or meaning of this term, as used, is limited by counsel for appellant to an act that is forced upon one, which he cannot help. It is true that the term embraces that meaning. It, however, as commonly used, has a broader and more comprehensive meaning, and there is nothing in the policy limiting it to the restricted sense contended for by counsel. The term is defined in the Century Diction

ary and Cyclopedia as: 'Not voluntary or willing; contrary or opposed to will or desire; independent of volition or consenting action of mind; unwilling; unintentional.' The presence of these very elements in taking the poison is what constitutes the taking accidental. Without these there could be no accident. He did not intend to take poison; he took it by mistake; hence the taking was not willed, but unintentional, and therefore involuntary. One of the definitions given by the Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia of voluntary is 'not accidental.' Involuntary is an antonym of voluntary, and therefore, in this sense, includes 'accidental.' It is difficult for us to conceive of a case of taking poison that is not included in either the term 'voluntary' or 'involuntary,' as used in the policy. The usual and ordinary meaning of the terms would include, in one or the other, every manner of taking poison; therefore we do not feel warranted in giving to them a meaning less restricted than they usually import."

And it has been held that death caused by accidentally eating spoiled oysters is clearly within a clause of an accident policy providing that it should not cover injuries resulting from poison, or anything accidentally or otherwise taken or absorbed. Maryland Casualty Co. v. Hudgins (1903) 97 Tex. 124, 64 L.R.A. 349, 104 Am. St. Rep. 857, 76 S. W. 745, 1 Ann. Cas. 252.

In Dezell v. Fidelity & C. Co. (1903) 176 Mo. 253, 75 S. W. 1102, an exception in a policy that it did not cover "injuries, fatal or otherwise, resulting from poison or anything accidentally or otherwise taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled" was held not to preclude a recovery, it appearing that the insured's death was caused by taking an overdose of morphine which had been prescribed by a physician to relieve pain. The court in this case said: "It will be observed that it is not limited to poison, but extends to anything,' and is not confined to poison or anything taken, but includes poison or anything not only taken, but also such as may be administered, ab

sorbed, or inhaled; and that it applies whether the same be accidentally or intentionally done. Literally construed, it would cover everything known to man that would injure or kill, whether taken by the assured himself, or administered to him by a physician, or whether absorbed or inhaled without and in spite of himself or with the aid of anyone else, or as the result of natural laws. It would also cut off recovery where the poison or anything was taken or administered to save life and was given for the best and most scientific reasons, as fully and completely as if it was taken with suicidal intent. If this was the true meaning and intent of the insurer, it ought to have been expressed in such unequivocal and plain words that there could be no misunderstanding its meaning. Instead of employing the negative form of expression and clothing the intention in such general terms, it should have been affirmatively stated that the policy meant that no recovery could be had, unless the physical evidences of the cause of the injury were apparent to the naked eye, and that the company would not pay for any injury unless the gaping wound told its own tale. The better reason supports the rule that such exceptions in such policies do not cover medicine (even though it contain poison) or anything taken or administered in good faith to alleviate physical pain, even though it results in unexpected and unintentional death."

This case was followed in Beile v. Travelers' Protective Asso. (1910) 155 Mo. App. 629, 135 S. W. 497, where the insured died as a result of chloroform administered by a physician preparatory to an operation and, a provision that the policy should not cover injuries, "fatal or otherwise, resulting from any poison or infection, or from anything accidental or otherwise taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled," was held not to cover medicine, even though it contained poison, or anything taken or administered in good faith to alleviate physical pain, even though it resulted in unexpected and unintentional death.

And in Mutual Acci. Asso. v. Tuggle (1890) 39 Ill. App. 509, reversed on another point in (1891) 138 Ill. 428, 28 N. E. 1066, where the insured took an overdose of laudanum which caused his death, recovery was sustained, notwithstanding an exception from liability in case of “the taking of poison in any manner," the court stating, in answer to the argument that this clause had been overlooked by the lower court, that although it was not discussed in the opinion they could not assume that it was overlooked.

And in Metropolitan Acci. Asso. v. Froiland (1896) 161 Ill. 30, 52 Am. St. Rep. 359, 43 N. E. 766, affirming (1895) 59 Ill. App. 522, following Travelers' Ins. Co. v. Dunlap (Ill.) infra, a recovery for death resulting from the taking of chloral by mistake for water was held not excluded by a provision that the insurance should "not be held to extend . . . to poison in any way taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled," it being held that the words "in any way" related to the mode or manner in which the poison was taken, and not to the motive of the insured in taking it.

And in Travelers' Ins. Co. v. Dunlap (1896) 160 Ill. 642, 52 Am. St. Rep. 355, 43 N. E. 765, a provision that the insurance should not cover death or disability from "taking poison" was held not to exclude liability for death caused by taking carbolic acid by mistake for peppermint, such provision being held to mean the voluntary taking of poison, and not to include cases of accidental taking. And it was further held in that case that the exception should not be construed as meaning the accidental taking of poison, on the theory that if the death or injury was not accidental it was not within the scope of the policy, the court stating that it was clear that the exception was something more than an exclusion of what would otherwise be included as accidents, it appearing that the exception also expressly excluded suicide by a sane person, which could not be said to be an accident, and also other causes of death and injury not accidental. And it was also held that the argument was

erroneous that the term "taking poison" could not be limited to the intentional taking of poison, for the reason that death so caused was covered by the clause excluding liability in case of suicide, and that to so construe it would give no force to the words "taking poison," the court stating that when the entire provision was considered it was clear that it recognized that death might result from voluntarily taking poison without suicidal intent, and that such death would not be excepted by the suicide clause.

II. Where blood poisoning follows accidental injury.

A situation, which in a number of cases has given rise to the question whether an exclusion in an accident policy of liability for injury from poison, etc., prevents a recovery, has arisen where blood poisoning ensued as a result of an accidental injury.

In the following cases, where death resulted from blood poisoning following an accidental wound, it was held that the blood poisoning was not an injury within the meaning of the exceptions indicated, the theory being that the death in such cases was the result of the wound, and that the infection was merely an incident to the original injury. Central Acci. Ins. Co. v. Rembe (1906) 220 Ill. 151, 5 Ann. Cas. 155, 5 L.R.A. (N.S.) 933, 110 Am. St. Rep. 235 (where the provision was "taking of poison, or contract with poisonous substances"); United States Health & Acci. Ins. Co. v. Harvey (1906) 129 Ill. App. 104 (where the provision limited liability in cases. of "poison or infection"); Simpkins v. Hawkeye Commercial Men's Asso. (1910) 148 Iowa, 543, 126 N. W. 192 (where liability was excepted for injuries "from the intentional taking of poison, and from contact with poisonous substances"); Omberg v. United States Mut. Acci. Asso. (1897) 101 Ky. 303, 72 Am. St. Rep. 413, 40 S. W. 909 (where the policy excluded liability for injuries or death "from poison in any form or manner," or "from contact with poisonous substances"); Garvey v. Phoenix Preferred Acci. Ins. Co. (1908) 123 App. Div. 106, 108 N. Y.

Supp. 186 (where there was a limitation of liability in the event of injuries or disability resulting directly or indirectly from poison or infection); Cary v. Preferred Acci. Ins. Co. (1906) 127 Wis. 67, 5 L.R.A. (N.S.) 926, 115 Am. St. Rep. 997, 106 N. W. 1055, 7 Ann. Cas. 484 (where there was an exemption of liability for injuries "resulting from any poison or infection, or from anything accidentally or otherwise taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled").

And in Ballagh v. Interstate Business Men's Acci. Asso. (1915) 176 Iowa, 110, L.R.A.1917A, 1050, 155 N. W. 241, it was held that full liability on an accident policy could not be avoided in case of death from blood poisoning, resulting from infection of a wound which was within the terms of the policy, because of a provision that there should be no liability for death resulting from infection, except that whenever, as a direct result of an injury, the skin should be abraded, and there should be introduced into the system through the abrasion, and by the instrument causing it, any specific facteria which should produce blood poisoning, the insurer's liability should be a percentage of the face of the policy.

In Finucane v. Standard Acci. Ins. Co. (1918) 184 App. Div. 280, 171 N. Y. Supp. 1018, where a policy insuring against death resulting directly or indirectly, exclusively and independently of all other causes, from accidental bodily injuries, contained a provision for limited liability, "where either the injury causing the loss or the loss itself results from or is contributed to by any poison, disease, infection," etc., this provision was held to apply only to poison, disease, or infection from which the insured was suffering prior to and at the time of an accident, and not to be applicable where the insured accidentally struck her leg and caused an abrasion of the skin which became infected, and resulted in blood poisonin and death.

In Farner v. Massachusetts Mut. Acci. Asso. (1907) 219 Pa. 71, 123 Am. St. Rep. 621, 67 Atl. 927, where the policy insured against accidental injuries resulting in death, and also pro2 A.L.R.-5.

vided for indemnities in case of certain sicknesses, and provided that all cases of "contact with poison or poisonous or infectious substances are covered only under the health provi sions of this policy," it was held that the policy was prima facie an accident policy, and that the insured's death, which resulted from poisonous inoculation, due to the bite of a dog, was proximately due to the bite, and that recovery should therefore be allowed under the accident provisions of the policy.

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And where a policy provided that "in the event of any claim arising under this policy (irrespective of its cause) due directly or indirectly, wholly or in part, to sunstroke, peritonitis, . blood poisoning, . . then and in all such cases benefits shall be paid solely under illness benefits, as provided under clause 5 of this policy; except that in the event of claim arising, due to infection or blood poisoning following immediately after and as a direct result of accident, such infection or poisoning having its inception while insured is under the care of a physician, then, in such case, benefits shall be paid under accident benefits," as provided in designated clauses, it was held, it appearing that the insured died of peritonitis, resulting from infection, which in turn was caused by an accident and followed immediately thereafter and as a direct result of it, that accident benefits might be recovered. Pacific Mut. L. Ins. Co. v. McCabe (1914) 157 Ky. 270, 162 S. W. 1136.

In Gertz v. Clover Leaf Casualty Co. (1916) 197 Ill. App. 462, it is stated in an abstract of the opinion that, under a policy of accident and health insurance, which provided for a payment in case of death from sickness, a provision that disability from ulcers and blood poisoning should be classified as sickness excluded any claim for payments for accidental death from an ulcer of the foot, alleged to have been due to blood poisoning as the result of coal striking the foot.

III. Where insured comes in contact with poisonous substance. In Railway Mail Asso. v. Dent

(1914) L.R.A.1915A, 314, 130 C. C. A. 387, 213 Fed. 981, affirming (1910) 183 Fed. 840, the insured's death, which was due to his contact with poison ivy, which resulted in the spread of an eruption over his whole body, was held not due to poison or other injurious matter "taken or administered," accidentally or otherwise.

But in Preferred Acci. Ins. Co. v. Robinson (1903) 45 Fla. 525, 61 L.R.A. 145, 33 So. 1005, 3 Ann. Cas. 931, under a policy providing that, subject to all of the provisions and conditions therein, it insured against the effects of bodily injury caused solely by external, violent, and accidental means, and further providing that it did not cover an injury "resulting from any poison or infection, or from anything accidentally or otherwise taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled," it was held that there could be no recovery for an injury to the insured's eye from poison absorbed by accidentally coming in contact with poison ivy, since such injury came within the exception.

And in Kasten v. Interstate Casualty Co. (1898) 99 Wis. 73, 40 L.R.A. 651, 74 N. W. 534, where the accident policy contained a condition that the liability of the insurer should not extend to injuries, fatal or otherwise, resulting wholly or in part from poison or anything accidentally or otherwise taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled, it was held that death caused by blood poisoning, from the effects of absorption of septic poisoning from germs in cotton inserted by a dentist to stop hemorrhage was clearly within the condition, and precluded a recovery on the policy.

In Bacon v. United States Mut. Acci. Asso. (1887) 44 Hun (N. Y.) 599, an exception in an accident policy that it "shall not extend .to any death

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IV. Miscellaneous.

In Miller v. Fidelity & C. Co. (1899) 97 Fed. 836, where the insured died from injuries sustained by swallowing hard, pointed, and resistant substances of food, which perforated his intestinal canal, it was held that recovery was not excluded by a provision of the policy that it should not cover injuries "resulting from poison, or anything accidentally or otherwise taken, administered, absorbed, or inhaled," it being held that the food was eaten, and not "taken," within the meaning of the provision.

In Meehan v. Trader & Travelers' Acci. Co. (1901) 34 Misc. 158, 68 N. Y. Supp. 821, where the policy provided that the insurer should not be liable for "injuries, fatal or otherwise, resulting directly or indirectly from or in any wise contributed to by poison in any form or manner, or contact with poisonous substances," it was held that no recovery could be had for injuries sustained because of carbolic acid, which was thrown on the insured by another, the court refusing to sustain the insured's contention that the word "poison" meant a substance taken internally, and the further contention that the words, "contact with poisonous substances," meant a voluntary and conscious action of the insured.

In Preferred Mut. Acci. Asso. v. Beidelman (1889) 1 Monaghan (Pa.) 481, where the insured was bitten, or stung by a venomous insect, and thereby disabled, the question whether the injury resulted from poison, within a provision exempting the insurer from liability for any injury resulting from poison in any form or manner, was held properly left to the jury, and a verdict for the insured was sustained.

The plaintiff, in an action on a contract of insurance which excepts liability where death was caused by the "intentional or unintentional taking of poison," must show that the insured's death did not come within the exception. Pixley v. Illinois Commercial Men's Asso. (1915) 195 Ill. App. 135.

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