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Insurance Company Wants to Walk Away from Controversial Insured

June 2, 2011
Colson Hicks Eidson

An insurance company wants out if its policy with the insured, a controversial caffeinated alcohol drink, according to the insurer’s request for declaratory judgment in federal court. Selective Insurance claims it does not have a duty to defend or indemnify Phusion Projects from lawsuits over Phusion’s “Four Loko” brand beverage.

Families of several people filed suit after their loved ones died from symptoms linked to the alcohol beverage. One lawsuit from a victim’s father says that one can of 23.5 oz. Four Loko is 12 percent alcohol, contains as much alcohol as five to six 12 oz. cans of beer and as much caffeine as two cups of coffee. In addition, the beverage contains wormwood, which is a banned ingredient of absinthe. The father’s son shot himself in the head after drinking Four Loko.

Selective Insurance claims that Four Loko is an inherently dangerous and defective product. The insurance company says people call the drink “Blackout in a Can,” and Phusion intended young people to purchase and consume the drink, including minors.

The drink is so notorious that Senator Charles Schumer asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate companies that promote caffeinated alcohol drinks to look like energy drinks.

Contact a Florida attorney if you or a loved one suffers injuries from a defective product. A Florida lawyer can represent you and protect your rights in a product liability lawsuit.