Plans for the holiday season and especially for the big blowout bash of January 1st are, no doubt, well underway with arrangements having been made for the location, caterer, band, and invitations, but has any thought been given to the purchase of special event insurance? Probably not. Insurance is usually an afterthought if any thought is given to it at all. Special event insurance can be purchased for both private and corporate events.1 The following is a snapshot of special event insurance for private events just in case there is a planned January 1st festivity—it’s not too late to purchase special event insurance.
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The ability to anticipate future events is important. How about this August 2009 prediction I made in More News on the Michael Jackson Event Cancellation Insurance Policy and Claim:

One of the trends in insurance claims is that some insurance carriers are a lot more willing to litigate potential defenses regardless of the wealth or size of the policyholder. Two decades ago, corporate clients and those of public reputation infrequently needed to resolve insurance matters in courtrooms. That is no longer the case. With $17.5 million at issue, I would not be surprised if the underwriters were considering application defenses as well.


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Michael Jackson’s event cancellation policy has a bit of history and is still very much in play according to a couple of news articles that have been forwarded to me. Last March, The UK Guardian ran a story, Michael Jackson Promoters Struggle to Find Farewell Tour Insurance, depicting problems with Jackson and his promoters finding event cancellation coverage:

AEG Live, the promoters behind the concerts, are "still negotiating" with insurers, they said this week. While AEG were able to insure the initial 10-day run – worth about £80m – insurers are less enthusiastic about covering seven months of dates stretching from July 2009 to February 2010. Fifty concerts would require around £300m in cover.

The insurers’ reluctance is easy to understand. The longest O2 arena residency has been taken out by a 50-year-old who has not toured in 12 years, was rumoured to be dying last year, and is nicknamed, well, Wacko Jacko.

But Randy Phillips, chief executive at AEG Live, reassured sceptics. "He’s in great shape," Phillips told the Telegraph. "The insurance brokers sent doctors and they spent five hours with him, taking blood tests."

AEG Live are prepared "to self-insure to make up the dates", Phillips emphasised. "It’s a risk we’re willing to take to bring the King of Pop to his fans."

"He’s a vegetarian," Phillips said. "They’re healthy, right?"


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Following up on yesterday’s post, What does a Property Insurance Coverage Policyholder Lawyer Think About the Day After a Def Leppard Concert?, there has been some debate in the insurance press regarding the 2009 Michael Jackson Tour. Phil Gusman has three articles in the National Underwriter Property & Casualty on the topic: Will Insurers Pay For Jackson’s Concerts?; Michael Jackson’s Death Raises Event Cancellation Issues; and Insurers Could Question Jackson Pre-Concert Physical Results. Based on the articles, Jackson would have had a physical examination as a requirement of the insurance.


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How about, “Where’s the Advil?” My wife commented Friday night that all my “edgy” friends must also enjoy this genre of rock because the concert was sold out. Just as she made that remark, a thunderstorm struck. Being the nerdy insurance coverage lawyer that I am, and even though my thoughts were straying just a little at the time with the rather bizarre visuals that accompany a Def Leppard concert, I thought, “if the power cut off and the concert cancelled, would there somehow be coverage afforded under an insurance policy?”


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