Kanye West has filed a $10 million lawsuit against an insurance company he says is attempting to dodge the claims he made after being forced to cancel his tour last year.
The Hollywood Reporter reports that the insurance company has subjected West to multiple interrogations about the extent of his mental breakdown, which caused him to cancel his tour.
Last year, West had planned a “Saint Pablo Tour” that would last from August to November 2016 with 38 concerts in between. For “peace of mind,” the artist’s tour company used Lloyd’s of London insurance for assurance that if any concert was cancelled or he was unable to perform, he would still be paid.
The tour was indeed suspended when he walked off the stage during a concert after learning that his wife, Kim Kardashian, had been robbed at gunpoint. West decided, however, to extend the tour to make up for the missed dates.
During the extended portion of the tour, West began behaving unusually and making bizarre statements onstage. In San Jose, California, the artist was booed when he told the crowd that if he had voted, he would have voted for Donald Trump.
Just two days later, West ranted for 15 minutes about other celebrities and public figures. He said of Beyonce, “I was hurt ‘cause I heard that you said you wouldn’t perform unless you won Video of the Year over me.” Then he addressed Jay-Z, saying, “I know you got killers. Please don’t send them at my head.”
He also invoked Hillary Clinton.
“This Saint Pablo tour is the most relevant [thing] happening. If your old ass keeps following old models, you’ll be Hillary Clinton,” he said.
The next day, the tour was cancelled and West checked himself into a psychiatric hospital at UCLA for a mental evaluation. To get a full refund from his insurance, the insurance company was informed of the cancelled tour, and was provided with a sworn testimony from his primary physician there that West suffered a debilitating medical condition that forced him to cancel the rest of the tour.
According to the lawsuit, the insurance company immediately began taking steps to fight the claim.
“Almost immediately after the claim was submitted, Defendants selected legal counsel to oversee the adjustment of the claim, instead of the more normal approach of retaining a non-lawyer insurance adjuster. Immediately turning to legal counsel made it clear that Defendants’ goal was to hunt for any ostensible excuse, no matter how fanciful, to deny coverage or to maneuver themselves into a position of trying to negotiate a discount on the loss payment.”
West was first required to submit an IME, independent medical evaluation, by the insurance company, followed by an EUO, examination under oath.
“Kanye was made available for a purported IME by a doctor, hand-selected by the insurers’ counsel, who was predisposed to look for some reason to deny the claim. Yet even Defendants’ selected doctor had to admit that Kanye was disabled from being able to continue with the Tour. As demanded by the insurers, Kanye was also subsequently presented for an examination under oath (“EUO”), and at least eleven other persons affiliated with Kanye and Very Good were similarly presented for EUOs.”
The Los Angeles Times reports that West and his team believes the insurance company may be leaking information about his medical condition to the press.
The lawsuit reportedly alleges that the insurance company “purposely and maliciously caused to be disseminated to news outlets privileged, private and personal information regarding Kanye and the dialogue between Very Good and the insurers.”
According to The Sun, Lloyd’s says that marijuana use may have led to the mental breakdown. West’s lawyer, Howard King, reportedly wrote that the insurer is “implying Kanye’s use of marijuana may provide them with the basis to deny the claim.”
King made a statement warning other artists against using the insurance company, which he believes is cheating West out of the money he was guaranteed when he began paying premiums on the insurance.
“Performing artists who pay handsomely to insurance companies within the Lloyd’s of London marketplace to obtain show tour ‘non-appearance or cancellation’ insurance should take note of the lesson to be learned from this lawsuit: Lloyd’s companies enjoy collecting bounteous premiums; they don’t enjoy paying claims, no matter how legitimate. Their business model thrives on conducting unending ‘investigations,’ of bona fide coverage requests, stalling interminably, running up their insured’s costs, and avoiding coverage decisions based on flimsy excuses. The artists think they they’re buying peace of mind. The insurers know they’re just selling a ticket to the courthouse.”
Feature photo: Associated Press