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Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees

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Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees
9 Months Ended
Nov. 03, 2018
Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees [Abstract]  
Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees
Litigation and Other Contingencies
Litigation

Shareholder Derivative Litigation

Weitzman/Lipsius. In October 2013, two purported shareholder derivative actions were filed against certain present and former members of the Company’s Board of Directors and executives by the following parties in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division: Weitzman (filed October 2, 2013) and Zauderer (filed October 3, 2013). The Company was named as a nominal defendant in both suits. The lawsuits asserted claims for breaches of fiduciary duties and unjust enrichment based upon alleged false and misleading statements and/or omissions regarding the Company’s financial condition. The lawsuits sought unspecified compensatory damages, restitution, disgorgement by the defendants of all profits, benefits and other compensation, equitable relief to reform the Company’s corporate governance and internal procedures, reasonable costs and expenses, and other relief as the court may deem just and proper. On October 28, 2013, the Court consolidated the two cases into the Weitzman lawsuit. Also, in March 2016, plaintiff Frank Lipsius filed a purported shareholder derivative action against certain present and former members of the Company's Board of Directors and executives in the District Court of Collin County in the State of Texas. The Company was named as a nominal defendant in the suit. The suit generally mirrored the allegations contained in the Weitzman and Zauderer suits and sought similar relief. On May 18, 2017, plaintiff in the Lipsius suit voluntarily dismissed the Collin County action, and on May 19, 2017, refiled the action in the District Court of Dallas County, Texas. The parties have settled the Weitzman and Lipsius derivative litigation and the federal court granted final approval of the settlement on September 12, 2018. The state court litigation was dismissed pursuant to the terms of the settlement shortly thereafter.

Rojas. On October 19, 2018, a shareholder of the Company, Juan Rojas, filed a shareholder derivative action against certain present and former members of the Company’s Board of Directors in the Delaware Court of Chancery. The Company is named as a nominal defendant. The lawsuit asserts claims for breaches of fiduciary duties based on alleged failures to prevent the Company from engaging in allegedly unlawful promotional pricing practices. While no assurance can be given as to the ultimate outcome of this matter, we believe that the final resolution of this action will not have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, liquidity or capital resources.

Other Legal Proceedings
The District Attorney’s office for the County of San Joaquin, California, joined by District Attorneys for other counties in California, recently concluded an investigation regarding the handling and disposal at JCP’s California stores and distribution centers of certain materials that may be deemed hazardous or universal waste under California law. On February 21, 2018, the District Attorneys provided a settlement demand to JCP that included a proposed civil penalty, reimbursement of investigation costs, enhancements to JCP’s compliance program and certain injunctive relief. JCP and the District Attorneys have reached an agreement to fully resolve this matter by entering into a stipulation for entry of final judgment and permanent injunction, which was approved by a California court on October 16, 2018.  JCP did not admit to any issue of law or fact, but agreed to pay a civil penalty and to reimburse the government’s enforcement costs. JCP also agreed to invest in enhancements to its compliance program over the next five years.  We do not believe the cost of the settlement and compliance with the final judgment will have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, liquidity or capital resources.

We are subject to various other legal and governmental proceedings involving routine litigation incidental to our business. Accruals have been established based on our best estimates of our potential liability in certain of these matters, including certain matters discussed above, all of which we believe aggregate to an amount that is not material to the Consolidated Financial Statements. These estimates were developed in consultation with in-house and outside counsel. While no assurance can be given as to the ultimate outcome of these matters, we currently believe that the final resolution of these actions, individually or in the aggregate, will not have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, liquidity or capital resources.
Contingencies
As of November 3, 2018, we have an estimated accrual of $20 million related to potential environmental liabilities that is recorded in Other accounts payable and accrued expenses and Other liabilities in the unaudited Interim Consolidated Balance Sheet. This estimate covered potential liabilities primarily related to underground storage tanks, remediation of environmental conditions involving our former drugstore locations and asbestos removal in connection with approved plans to renovate or dispose of our facilities. We continue to assess required remediation and the adequacy of environmental reserves as new information becomes available and known conditions are further delineated. If we were to incur losses at the estimated amount, we do not believe that such losses would have a material effect on our financial condition, results of operations or liquidity.