Heath's Life Insurance Policy Contested


Sep. 29 2008, Published 7:00 a.m. ET

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Although the entirety of Heath Ledger's $16 million estate will go to his young daughter Matilda Rose, as his family announced earlier, there is still controversy bubbling around the late actor's death that could keep some funds from his heir.

A $10 million life insurance policy that Heath bought months before his death is being contested by Minnesota-based ReliaStar Life Insurance Company, which has not paid out the amount to Matilda.

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And now a former attorney for Heath who arranged the policy on the actor's behalf, John S. LaViolette is suing the company for trying to avoid paying, according to the Associated Press.

While Heath's name is not on the lawsuit, it was filed in July on behalf of "a man who died of ''accidental causes on January 22, 2008," the day Heath was discovered dead of an apparent accidental prescription drug overdose.

heath ledger

TMZ reports that the company is also saying that Heath lied on his application for the policy when answered questions about whether he was taking prescription drugs when he filled out the application and whether he ever used illegal drugs.

While a spokesman for ReliaStar tells the AP that the insurer has made no decision about whether to pay the claim, TMZ says that the company is delaying paying the policy while they investigate whether or not Heath's death could have been a suicide, even though officials ruled that it was an accident.


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