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Michael Jackson's Addiction Caused Lloyds to Default on Tour Insurance

Jackson's undisclosed drug addictions violated the $17 million insurance policy governing his ill-fated "This Is It" tour, says Lloyds of London.

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The red jacket's for sale.
Photo via familyvideo

By Kirwan Gray

06/07/11

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Michael Jackson’s multiple drug addictions have given insurance giant Lloyds of London the loophole they needed to default on coverage of Jackson’s “This is It” tour. The Daily Mail reports that lawyers for Lloyds have concluded that the deal is off, and the $17.5 million policy is null and void, because Jackson lied about his medical history—in particular his addiction to prescription drugs. Before Jackson’s death during rehearsals, the tour was scheduled to kick off with a 50-concert engagement at London’s massive O2 stadium. Concert promoter AEG Live took out the $17 million policy two months before the tour was slated to begin.

Even more controversially, says Lloyds, the singer failed to disclose his use of the sleep agent Propofol, which is a general anesthetic administered intravenously and unavailable to anyone except licensed medical personnel. Propofol, possibly in combination with other drugs, may have been the cause of his death in June of 2009. But then, like Elvis, Michael Jackson died with so many drugs in his system that it’s a pointless exercise to pick out just one. Lloyds of London is also saying that Jackson, who died at the age of 50, falsely claimed not to have seen a doctor since 2005. (Dr. Conrad Murray, Jackson’s personal physician, has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in a case scheduled to begin in September.)

And furthermore, says Lloyds, Jackson failed to obtain a medical examination required by the policy. Howard Weitzman, attorney for the Jackson estate, told TMZ: “This legal action is nothing more than an insurance company trying to avoid paying a legitimate claim by the insured.”

Meanwhile, the red jacket Michael Jackson wore in the Thriller video will be up for sale at Julian’s Auctions in Beverly Hills later this month. Rumor has it that the estate is hoping to take in as much as $400,000.

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