Amber Heard has filed a lawsuit against her million-dollar insurance policy, claiming that her insurer should cover her against her losses during the Johnny Depp trial.
The 36-year-old Heard, who was ordered to pay more than $8.3 million to her ex-husband in their contentious defamation lawsuit, sued New York Marine and General Insurance Co. after the insurer asked a judge to let it go off the hook.
Heard had taken out a $1 million liability policy to protect her from libel claims, but the insurer argued that because the jury found Amber had committed willful misconduct in her claims about Depp, they were not required to comply with the policy under the law from California.
Court documents obtained by TMZ show that Heard claims the opposite, claiming she made an “unconditional deal” that protects her no matter what.
The countersuit comes just weeks after Depp, 59, appealed the court’s ruling that he would pay Heard $2 million following their trial.
Amber Heard filed a countersuit against New York Marine and General Insurance Co., claiming it should cover her for her losses during the defamation lawsuit with ex-husband Johnny Depp
Heard, 36, was ordered to pay $8.3 million to Depp (above). Although she took out a $1 million policy with the insurer, the company argued that because the jury found Amber committed willful misconduct in her claims, they were not required to comply with the policy under California law.
In her countersuit, Heard accused New York Marine and General Insurance Co. of turning their back on their agreement, saying it was a ‘breach of contract’.
It is the latest drama surrounding Heard and its insurers.
The battle involves Travelers Commercial Insurance Company and New York Marine General Insurance Company.
Travelers initially sued New York Marine in July 2021 to get a refund of half of what it spent defending a client who turned out to be Heard.
Heard’s Travelers homeowners policy covered “libel” to the point of about $500,000, while New York Marine issued her a general liability policy for $1 million.
The crux of the lawsuit was that Travelers believed Heard had the right to choose her own attorneys, while New York Marine disagreed, believing the case was “fairly straightforward.” A judge agreed with New York Marine’s desire to use local, lower-cost lawyers.
Travelers cast doubt on New York Marine-appointed attorneys Timothy McEvoy and Sean Patrick Roche, arguing they were “piggybacking” on the work of Heard attorneys Roberta Kaplan and Elaine Charlson Bredehoft.
New York Marine, for their part, claimed that their lawyers had been blocked by Kaplan and Bredehoft.
They now want $621,693 refunded in exchange for their contribution to Heard’s defense fund, as their lawyers were kept out of several court proceedings.
The insurers are currently suing Heard to prevent them from contributing to the libel settlement using a California law that prohibits insurers from covering “intentional acts.”
Heard recently hired attorney Kirk Pasich to resolve this situation on her behalf.
Double Jeopardy for Heard may find her responsible for the entire verdict if it survives her appeal, as Travelers will try to prevent her from paying it if Depp can prove she made false statements.
Depp and Heard were only married for 15 months before calling it quits in 2016
At the conclusion of the defamation lawsuit, Depp, 59, was awarded $10 million to $15 million in punitive damages and $5 million in punitive damages.
The judge later limited the damages to the state’s maximum of $350,000, leaving Depp with a total of $8.35 million.
Meanwhile, Heard won one of her three counterclaims regarding statements from Depp’s attorney suggesting that the actress and her friends trashed their apartment before calling the police.
The actress was awarded $2 million in damages out of the $100 million she sought.
A day after Heard’s team appealed, Depp’s team did the same to reverse the few million the actor owed his ex-wife.
The Pirates of the Caribbean actor’s team said they have appealed to ensure “all information is considered by the court” as they return to consider Heard’s appeal.
Before filing an appeal, Heard’s attorney asked the judge to quash the decision and declare a mistrial. It was argued that one of the jurors in the case should not have been considered because his subpoena was for his father, who had the same name and lived at the same address.
Judge Penny Azcarate denied the request, claiming there was no “evidence of fraud or wrongdoing” by the juror and that the jury’s verdict should stand.”
Johnny Depp and Amber Heard Slander Trial Timeline
In March 2019, Johnny Depp sued his ex-wife, Amber Heard, for $50 million after she wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post in 2018 saying she had been abused by the Pirates of the Caribbean star. However, she never explicitly mentioned Depp in the piece, instead writing that she is “a public figure who represents domestic violence.”
In February 2020, audio recordings obtained by DailyMail.com show Heard admitting to punching Depp. “I was hitting you… I don’t know what the movement of my hand was, but you’re fine, I didn’t hurt you, I didn’t hit you, I was hitting you,” heard said.
In January 2021, Heard sued her ex-husband for $100 million
On April 11, 2022, Virginia’s six-week trial began to discuss the allegations of abuse during the couple’s relationship. The couple married in 2015, but divorced in 2017.
On April 20, 2022, Heard admitted to becoming violent with Depp when audio recordings of the actress were played.
On May 4, 2022, Heard took the stand to remember the romance with Depp before he allegedly abused her. The actress said the abuse dates back to 2013, when Depp allegedly sexually assaulted her.
On May 25, 2022, Depp testified again, claiming Heard’s allegations were false. He claimed that he never abused his ex-wife
On June 1, 2022, the judge ruled that Depp had won the defamation case against Heard, forcing her to pay the star of The Pirates of the Caribbean $10.3 million. The jury awarded Heard $2 million after Depp’s attorney said Heard and her friends trashed her apartment before calling the police.
On July 21, 2022, Heard appealed the judge’s decision in her defamation case against Depp — two months after she was forced to pay her ex-husband $10 million in damages.
On July 22, 2022, Depp filed an appeal against his conviction for defaming Heard after calling the domestic violence allegations against him a “hoax” — forcing him to pay his ex-wife $2 million.