NEW YORK (Reuters) - Legendary rock group The Rolling Stones are locked in a legal battle with an insurance company over a $12.7 million (8 million pounds) claim for cancelled tour dates in Australia and New Zealand following the March death of Mick Jagger’s girlfriend, designer L’Wren Scott.
A U.S. judge granted insurance underwriters, who have denied the claim by the rock group, permission to investigate the mental state of Scott, who committed suicide in her upscale New York apartment on March 17 at the age of 49.
Judge Brooke C. Wells of U.S. District Court of Utah ruled last month that the underwriters could question Randall Bambrough, Scott’s brother, about her medical and mental history.
The Rolling Stones took out a $23.9 million insurance policy before their 2014 tour of Asia and Australia to cover cancellations due to the death of family members and others who are listed in the policy, which included Scott.
The band cancelled the Australia and New Zealand leg of their world tour following Scott’s death.
The underwriters said they denied the claim because Scott’s death was intentional and not a sudden, unforeseen event.
“Ms. Scott’s death arose from, was traceable to, or accelerated by, a condition for which she had received or been recommended medical attention,” the underwriters said, according to the court papers.
The Rolling Stones sued the underwriters in a court action filed in London and the underwriters are claiming that information it is seeking from Scott’s brother is relevant to the English litigation.
There was no immediate comment from representatives of The Rolling Stones about the case.
Scott, a former stylist turned designer, created sleek, sexy creations that were popular with Hollywood stars including Nicole Kidman and Amy Adams.
The tall, raven-haired designer had dated Jagger, 71, since 2001 and left her entire estate of $9 million to the singer.
The Rolling Stones started the rescheduled tour in South Australia on Oct. 25 but were forced to cancel a Nov. 8 concert in Australia when Jagged fell ill with a throat infection. The singer was under doctor’s orders to rest his vocal cords for a few days.
Their next concert is scheduled for Sydney on Nov. 12.
Reporting by Patricia Reaney; Editing by Mary Milliken and Marguerita Choy