5. Ejusdem Generis Rule – where specifications of particular things belonging to the same genus precede a word of general signification, the latter word is confined in its meaning to things belonging to the same genus and does not include things belonging to a different genus. This rule is applied in circumstances in which a policy is not exhaustive.

a)    King and Travelers Insurance Association Ltd
[1931] 48 TLR 53

Where specifications of particular things belonging to the same genus precede words of general specification, the latter words are confined in their meanings too things belonging to the same genus only. This is known as the “ ejusdem generis rule”.

A policy of insurance against accidental loss of baggage contained a clause stating “jewelry, watches, field glasses, cameras and other fragile or specially valuable articles must be separately declared and valued”. The insured claimed for the loss of a Persian lamb fur coat which had not been separately declared and valued.. It was held by the King Bench that the fur coat was not a fragile and a specially valuable article requiring to be separately declared and valued and that the ejusdem generis rule applied.

 Rowlatt J stated that Furs are commonplace articles of dress in the case of nearly every woman of any sort of comfortable means at all. The circumstance that they afford a great scope for extravagance and vanity, so that you can get furs of fantastic price, does not mind, show that being commonplace articles of dress they are specially valuable in the same sort of way that jewelry, watches, field glasses and cameras are.”

b)   Mair Vs Railway Passengers Association Co Ltd
[1877] L.T.R. 356.
A Clause in life policy excluded the insurer from liability if the insured met his death as a result of a wide variety of causes and different from those provided by caariages or entering or leaving a carriage in motion or riding races or stipple chases or generally by his willful exposing himself to any unnecessary danger or peril.
The insured accosted a woman in the street and was knocked down by the man in whose company she was and died as a result of injuries inflicted upon him. It was held that the insurance company could not rely on the exclusion clause as what happened could not be considered to be ejusdem generis with the perils enumerated in the clause.


Like Us on Facebook

Contact Form


Email *

Message *