Jackson’s wrongful death suit underway

The Boston Herald reported that Katherine Jackson, the mother of Michael Jackson, brought a wrongful death lawsuit against AEG Live. The company was the promoter of the tour Jackson was set to perform in and the company that allegedly paid for Dr. Conrad Murray to attend to Jackson's medical needs before and during the tour.

Dr. Murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for the 2009 death of Jackson after giving him doses of the anesthetic propofol as a sleep aid, which ultimately killed Jackson.

According to The Huffington Post, Jackson's mother alleges that AEG Live did not thoroughly investigate Dr. Murray. The lawsuit argues that AEG created a conflict of interest for the doctor, forcing him to choose between receiving a large paycheck and adequately caring for Jackson. AEG executives ignored Michael Jackson's health and were motivated by their own financial fortunes to push both Jackson and Dr. Murray, according to the suit.

AEG Live is claiming that the hiring of Dr. Murray was Jackson's decision and that the company played no role in his hiring. The Boston Herald further reported that AEG Live is arguing that because of Jackson's private and reclusive nature, AEG was unaware that he was using and being prescribed propofol, and that it was Jackson's personal decision to take the drug.

Despite AEG's claims, The Huffington Post reported that an AEG accounting executive was a witness in the trial. The executive testified that Dr. Murray was set to be paid up to $1.5 million for the first few months of the "This Is It" tour. The "This is It" budget is paid by AEG Live.

Overview of wrongful death lawsuits

A jury of six women and six men will determine whether or not AEG failed to investigate Murray and thus is guilty of wrongful death. If found guilty of wrongful death, AEG could end up paying Jackson's mother and three children millions of dollars in damages.

In most states, including Massachusetts, a surviving spouse, parent or child who is experiencing financial injury due to the death of his or her loved one as a result of the negligence or recklessness of another, may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit and obtain accidental death compensation for the loss.

Types of compensation that could be recoverable by the family member include loss of future wages, loss of benefits, loss of companionship, damages for the pain and suffering that the decedent experienced before his or her death, and punitive damages in some instances.

Someone who has lost a family member due to another person's negligent or reckless acts should contact a wrongful death lawyer. An attorney will work to help the family of the deceased identify the parties at fault, gather evidence and fight to help win compensation for financial injuries.