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As we previously reported, Dr. Conrad Murray is the subject of a wrongful death lawsuit, in addition to criminal charges (manslaughter) regarding Michael Jackson.

The embattled former physician of the late icon has thus retained a civil lawyer, Charles Peckham, who handles medical board cases and wrongful death lawsuits.

His criminal defense is likely based on these claims about Jackson. His civil defense is likely to fall along similar lines, but there is the matter of who’s paying for it.

The lawyer has been in touch with Dr. Murray’s malpractice insurance carrier, which has revealed a particularly tricky situation, even by Conrad Murray standards.

Apparently, Dr. Murray had a malpractice policy issued in Texas that covered his medical practices in Texas and Nevada … but of course, MJ died in California.

Murray did not have a medical practice in California, which is a prerequisite for his malpractice coverage, even though he treated Jackson almost exclusively there.

So Dr. Murray’s defense is that he first saw Michael Jackson as a Nevada patient and what he did for him in L.A. was merely an extension of the Nevada treatment.

Whether that holds up under examination by the legal system remains to be seen, but it’s crucial because malpractice policy covers civil litigation, but not criminal.

In the event the doctor is sued for wrongful death, and Joe Jackson will do the honors, Murray expects the policy would cover attorney’s fees and any judgment.

We suspect the insurance company will argue otherwise. Murray is expected to argue that Michael killed himself with Propofol and the doctor is not responsible.