It’s Not Easy Being Yeezy: Kanye West Sues in Federal Court over Insurance Claims

On August 1, Kanye West’s touring company, Very Good Inc., filed a lawsuit in the Central District of California against Lloyd’s of London,  claiming breach of contract and breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing.[1] The complaints arise from West’s cancellation of over 20 shows last November due to a “serious, debilitating medical condition.”[2] Although the exact details of West’s medical condition are unknown,[3] he was voluntarily hospitalized for exhaustion and was in a psychiatric hospital for eight days.[4]

Almost a year later, West is seeking to recover the losses for his canceled shows. Very Good Inc. asserts that Lloyd’s of London breached their contract by refusing to pay West, who previously spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on insurance premiums.[5] Very Good Inc. alleges the delayed payment stems from “unfounded” allegations that West used marijuana, causing his own medical condition and subsequent tour cancellation.[6] Typically, insurance plans for events include a drug clause excluding from coverage nonappearance of performers due to alcohol or drug use.[7] Up to the tour’s cancellation, concertgoers witnessed West’s erratic behavior characterized by show postponements and lengthy political monologues.[8]

Nonetheless, Very Good Inc. is seeking a jury trial and nearly $10 million in insurance payouts.[9] The lawsuit claims that West has submitted evidence to support that a legitimate medical condition caused his tour cancellation. Furthermore, the lawsuit alleges that Lloyd’s of London shared “personal and private” information with media outlets in an effort to intimidate West “to not pursue [his] rightful claims.”[10] A spokesman for Lloyd’s of London declined to comment on the specifics of the West case.[11] Whether West will prevail remains to be seen, but he shows no sign of settling, as the lawsuit asserts that rather than buying “peace of mind,” West was “[sold] a ticket to the courthouse.”[12]


[1] Fred Barbash & Travis M. Andrews, Kanye West’s $10 Million Insurance Battle with Lloyd’s Is Really Ugly, Washington Post, Aug. 3, 2017.

[2] Piya Sinha-Roy, Kanye West Sues Tour Insurers for $10 Million Over Canceled Shows, Reuters, Aug. 2, 2017.

[3] Id.

[4] Barbash & Andrews, Kanye West’s $10 Million Insurance Battle with Lloyd’s Is Really Ugly.

[5] Id.

[6] Id.

[7] Id.

[8] Id.

[9] Sinha-Roy, Kanye West Sues Tour Insurers for $10 Million Over Canceled Shows.

[10] Barbash & Andrews, Kanye West’s $10 Million Insurance Battle with Lloyd’s Is Really Ugly.

[11] Sinha-Roy, Kanye West Sues Tour Insurers for $10 Million Over Canceled Shows.

[12] Barbash & Andrews, Kanye West’s $10 Million Insurance Battle with Lloyd’s Is Really Ugly.

flickr image by Kenny Sun is licensed under CC by 2.0

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