Favor for which electrician was paid deemed “business pursuit” under insurance policy exclusion

A journeyman electrician, Holderman, who was employed, performed in a personal capacity a wiring service for friend for $300. The same wiring job eventually caused the death of a guest at the same residence. Holderman submitted the claim to State Farm, with whom he had personal liability provision under his homeowner’s policy.

Said policy excluded coverage for “business pursuits.” Under Indiana law, an insured is engaged in a business pursuit only when he pursues a continued regular activity for the purpose of earning a livelihood. At summary judgment, Judge Miller of the Northern District held that Holderman’s conduct fell under the exclusion since the favor was right in line with his professional responsibilities (thus a continued regular activity) and that he was earning a livelihood since he charged nearly exactly what he would have for any other job.

OPINION AND ORDER DENYING 27 RULE 12 for State Farm Fire & Casualty Company v. Holderman et al :: Justia Dockets & Filings.


About Matt Anderson

I am civil trial attorney in South Bend, Indiana and have practiced on both sides of insurance and personal injury law in Illinois and Indiana for the better part of ten years. I created this blog as a way for other Indiana civil litigation and trial attorneys to get meaningful updates on cases ad issues that affect their practice. (I'll admit that there is some self-interest involved since it's also a handy way to summarize and file my own research.)

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