SEC Filings

10-Q
TIME WARNER INC. filed this Form 10-Q on 10/26/2017
Entire Document
 


Table of Contents

TIME WARNER INC.

NOTES TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS – (Continued)

 

14.

COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES

Commitments

Six Flags

In connection with the Company’s former investment in the Six Flags theme parks located in Georgia and Texas (collectively, the “Parks”), in 1997, certain subsidiaries of the Company (including Historic TW and, in connection with the separation of Time Warner Cable Inc. in 2009, Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.) agreed to guarantee (the “Six Flags Guarantee”) certain obligations of the partnerships that hold the Parks (the “Partnerships”) for the benefit of the limited partners in such Partnerships, including: annual payments made at the Parks or to the limited partners and additional obligations at the end of the respective terms for the Partnerships in 2027 and 2028 (the “Guaranteed Obligations”). The aggregate undiscounted estimated future cash flow requirements covered by the Six Flags Guarantee over the remaining term (through 2028) are $908 million (for a net present value of $459 million). To date, no payments have been made by the Company pursuant to the Six Flags Guarantee.

Six Flags Entertainment Corporation (formerly known as Six Flags, Inc. and Premier Parks Inc.) (“Six Flags”), which has the controlling interest in the Parks, has agreed, pursuant to a subordinated indemnity agreement (the “Subordinated Indemnity Agreement”), to guarantee the performance of the Guaranteed Obligations when due and to indemnify Historic TW, among others, if the Six Flags Guarantee is called upon. If Six Flags defaults in its indemnification obligations, Historic TW has the right to acquire control of the managing partner of the Parks. Six Flags’ obligations to Historic TW are further secured by its interest in all limited partnership units held by Six Flags.

Because the Six Flags Guarantee existed prior to December 31, 2002 and no modifications to the arrangements have been made since the date the guarantee came into existence, the Company is required to continue to account for the Guaranteed Obligations as a contingent liability. Based on its evaluation of the current facts and circumstances surrounding the Guaranteed Obligations and the Subordinated Indemnity Agreement, the Company is unable to predict the loss, if any, that may be incurred under the Guaranteed Obligations, and no liability for the arrangements has been recognized at September 30, 2017. Because of the specific circumstances surrounding the arrangements and the fact that no active or observable market exists for this type of financial guarantee, the Company is unable to determine a current fair value for the Guaranteed Obligations and related Subordinated Indemnity Agreement.

Contingencies

In the ordinary course of business, the Company and its subsidiaries are defendants in or parties to various legal claims, actions and proceedings. These claims, actions and proceedings are at varying stages of investigation, arbitration or adjudication, and involve a variety of areas of law.

On April 4, 2007, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) issued a complaint against CNN America Inc. (“CNN America”) and Team Video Services, LLC (“Team Video”) related to CNN America’s December 2003 and January 2004 terminations of its contractual relationships with Team Video, under which Team Video had provided electronic news gathering services in Washington, D.C. and New York, NY. The National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians, under which Team Video’s employees were unionized, initially filed charges of unfair labor practices with the NLRB in February 2004, alleging that CNN America and Team Video were joint employers, that CNN America was a successor employer to Team Video, and/or that CNN America discriminated in its hiring practices to avoid becoming a successor employer or due to specific individuals’ union affiliation or activities. In the complaint, the NLRB sought, among other things, the reinstatement of certain union members and monetary damages. On November 19, 2008, the presiding NLRB Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) issued a non-binding recommended decision and order finding CNN America liable. On September 15, 2014, a three-member panel of the NLRB affirmed the ALJ’s decision and adopted the ALJ’s order with certain modifications. Following the NLRB’s decision on motions for reconsideration, on July 9, 2015, CNN America filed a notice of appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit regarding the panel’s decision. On August 4, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled, granting CNN America’s appeal in part and denying it in part, and remanded the case to the NLRB for further proceedings.

The Company establishes an accrued liability for legal claims when the Company determines that a loss is both probable and the amount of the loss can be reasonably estimated. Once established, accruals are adjusted from time to time, as appropriate, in light

 

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