Commitments And Contingencies
|9 Months Ended
Sep. 30, 2013
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]
|Commitments And Contingencies
Commitments and Contingencies
The Company continues to guarantee Starz, LLC's obligations under two of its studio output agreements. At September 30, 2013, the Company's guarantees for obligations for films released by such date aggregated $157 million. The Guarantee associated with these studio output agreements is expected to lapse in November of 2013 for one studio and November of 2014 for the other studio. While the guarantee amount for films not yet released is not determinable, such amounts are expected to be significant. The Company considered whether a liability associated with the Guarantee was considered necessary at the time of Spin-Off and determined that based on a number of scenarios associated with this Guarantee due to the financial well-being of Starz, the anticipated financial performance of Starz over the next two years and Starz's availability under its Credit Facility, that no liability was considered necessary.
In connection with agreements for the sale of assets by the Company or its subsidiaries, the Company may retain liabilities that relate to events occurring prior to its sale, such as tax, environmental, litigation and employment matters. The Company generally indemnifies the purchaser in the event that a third party asserts a claim against the purchaser that relates to a liability retained by the Company. These types of indemnification obligations may extend for a number of years. The Company is unable to estimate the maximum potential liability for these types of indemnification obligations as the sale agreements may not specify a maximum amount and the amounts are dependent upon the outcome of future contingent events, the nature and likelihood of which cannot be determined at this time. Historically, the Company has not made any significant indemnification payments under such agreements and no amount has been accrued in the accompanying condensed consolidated financial statements with respect to these indemnification guarantees.
The Atlanta Braves and certain of their players and coaches have entered into long-term employment contracts whereby such individuals' compensation is guaranteed. Amounts due under guaranteed contracts as of September 30, 2013 aggregated $128 million, which is payable as follows: $2 million in 2013, $49 million in 2014, $43 million in 2014, $16 million in 2016 and $18 million thereafter. In addition to the foregoing amounts, certain players and coaches may earn incentive compensation under the terms of their employment contracts.
The Company and its subsidiaries lease business offices, have entered into satellite transponder lease agreements and use certain equipment under lease arrangements.
The Company has contingent liabilities related to legal and tax proceedings and other matters arising in the ordinary course of business. Although it is reasonably possible the Company may incur losses upon conclusion of such matters, an estimate of any loss or range of loss cannot be made. In the opinion of management, it is expected that amounts, if any, which may be required to satisfy such contingencies will not be material in relation to the accompanying condensed consolidated financial statements.
In connection with a commercial transaction that closed during 2002 among Liberty, Vivendi Universal S.A. (“Vivendi”) and the former USA Holdings, Inc., Liberty brought suit against Vivendi and Universal Studios, Inc. in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, alleging, among other things, breach of contract and fraud by Vivendi. On June 25, 2012, a jury awarded Liberty damages in the amount of €765 million, plus prejudgment interest, in connection with a finding of breach of contract and fraud by the defendants. On January 17, 2013, the court entered judgment in favor of Liberty in the amount of approximately €945 million, including prejudgment interest. Vivendi has filed notice of its appeal of the judgment to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and, in that court, Liberty intends to seek a higher rate of pre-judgment interest than what the district court awarded. The case is stayed pending the appeal and the appeal in this case has been consolidated with the expected appeal of a class action brought against Vivendi by other shareholders. The amount that Liberty may ultimately recover in connection with the final resolution of the action, if any, and the timing of the resolution of the action is uncertain. Any recovery by Liberty will not be reflected in our consolidated financial statements until such time as the final disposition of this matter has been reached.