LOS ANGELES (CNN) — Michael Jackson’s mother and three children may be on the hook for $800,000 if they lose their appeal of the AEG wrongful death verdict, a judge ruled Monday.
Katherine Jackson and grandchildren Prince, Paris and Blanket would have to personally pay the money, because California law prohibits her lawyers, who footed much of her legal costs in the lawsuit, from paying it.
The Jacksons sued the concert promoter, accusing the company of responsibility in the pop icon’s 2009 death because it hired, retained or supervised the doctor convicted of involuntary manslaughter. A jury rejected their case after a six-month trial last year.
AEG Live lawyers initially asked for $1.2 million from the Jacksons, but Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos ordered them to resubmit their claim with $400,000 in expenses removed.
The Jacksons will not have to pay the $800,000 until their appeal is concluded and only if they lose. A California appeals court will hear arguments on the case in November, but it could be years before the judgment is final.
Jackson’s mother and children are the only beneficiaries to the trust funded by his estate.
Palazuelos denied the Jacksons’ request for a new trial in January.
Jackson lawyers argued the verdict form used by the jury was faulty and that the judge erred by refusing to let them pursue a negligence claim independent of the hiring case.
By Alan Duke