Live events sector
The dispute between Kanye West and the insurers of his abandoned 2016 ‘St Pablo’ tour continues, and West has now responded to a countersuit filed by the tour’s insurers
West’s $10 million insurance claim was made when he prematurely ended his US tour last November after ‘erratic behaviour’. He was subsequently admitted to the UCLA Neuropsychiatric Hospital Center, with one news agency sating at the time that this was “for his own health and safety”.
West sued his insurers at the beginning of August 2017. West claimed that he ended his 2016 tour early on the advice of doctors, and therefore the insurance policy must cover the losses incurred by West and his company Very Good Touring. The lawsuit also alleged that Lloyd’s fed confidential information about West to news outlets, and states that the insurers’ own selected doctor asserted that West’s mental condition was “disabling” enough to prevent him from continuing the tour.
The insurers countersued, accusing West of not fully co-operating with their investigation into the circumstances around the ‘St Pablo’ cancellation. The Lloyds of London insurers also alleged that there were “substantial irregularities in Mr West’s medical history In the lawsuit.” An independent medical examiner confirmed Kanye was unable to continue with the tour, but Lloyd’s want “further relief” and have demanded a trial by jury.
West’s touring company Very Good Touring now say that they haven’t been given “any indication if they will ever pay or even make a coverage decision, implying that West’s use of marijuana may provide them with a basis to deny the claim and retain the hundreds of thousands of dollars in insurance premiums paid by Very Good.” His lawyer Howard King said that the marijuana accusation was an “unsupportable contention”. The rapper’s lawyers accused the insurers of employing delaying tactics and putting unnecessary hurdles in the way, all in a bid to avoid having to pay out the insurance policies taken out for the ‘St Pablo’ tour.
West’s lawyers have now filed new paperwork calling for the countersuit to be dismissed. The new submission states that: “The counterclaim is another manifestation of defendants’ efforts to complicate Very Good’s effort to collect on the subject policies, and to proliferate needless pleadings. The counterclaim serves no useful purpose, as it is simply a reworking of the matters raised in the [original] complaint and the defendants’ answer to it”. Therefore, “the counterclaim should be withdraw or stricken”.
West’s lawyer Howard King said in a statement: “Lloyd’s counter-claim for declaratory relief is the same generic response Lloyd’s files in all cases when they don’t want to honour a legitimate claim but can’t find a factual basis to deny a claim.