Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees

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Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees
6 Months Ended
Aug. 02, 2014
Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees [Abstract]  
Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees
Litigation, Other Contingencies and Guarantees
Litigation
Macy’s Litigation
On August 16, 2012, Macy’s, Inc. and Macy’s Merchandising Group, Inc. (together the Plaintiffs) filed suit against J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc. in the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York, alleging that the Company tortiously interfered with, and engaged in unfair competition relating to a 2006 agreement between Macy’s and Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. (MSLO) by entering into a partnership agreement with MSLO in December 2011. The Plaintiffs sought primarily to prevent the Company from implementing our partnership agreement with MSLO as it related to products in the bedding, bath, kitchen and cookware categories. The suit was consolidated with an already-existing breach of contract lawsuit by the Plaintiffs against MSLO, and a bench trial commenced on February 20, 2013. On March 7, 2013, the judge adjourned the trial until April 8, 2013, and ordered the parties into mediation. The parties did not reach a settlement, and the trial continued on April 8, 2013. The parties concluded their presentations of evidence on April 26, 2013, and completed post-trial briefs in late May, 2013. The court held closing arguments on August 1, 2013.  On October 21, 2013, the Company and MSLO entered into an amendment of the partnership agreement, providing in part that the Company will not sell MSLO-designed merchandise in the bedding, bath, kitchen and cookware categories.  On January 2, 2014, MSLO and Macy's announced that they had settled the case as to each other, and MSLO was subsequently dismissed as a defendant. On June 16, 2014, the Court issued a ruling against JCPenney on the remaining claim of intentional interference, and held that Macy’s is not entitled to punitive damages.  The Court referred other issues related to damages to a Judicial Hearing Officer.  On June 30, 2014, JCPenney appealed the Court’s decision, and Macy’s has cross-appealed a portion of the decision.  While no assurance can be given as to the ultimate outcome of this matter, we currently 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
We are subject to various other legal and governmental proceedings involving routine litigation incidental to our business. Reserves have been established based on our best estimates of our potential liability in certain of these matters. 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, management currently believes 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 August 2, 2014, we estimated our total potential environmental liabilities to range from $16 million to $23 million and recorded our best estimate of $18 million in Other accounts payable and accrued expenses and Other liabilities in the unaudited Interim Consolidated Balance Sheet as of that date. 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 upper end of the estimated range, we do not believe that such losses would have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, liquidity or capital resources.
Guarantees
As of August 2, 2014, we had a guarantee totaling $20 million for the maximum exposure on insurance reserves established by a former subsidiary included in the sale of our Direct Marketing Services business.

In addition, in connection with the sale of the operations of our catalog outlet stores, we assigned leases on certain outlet store locations to the purchaser.  In the event that the purchaser fails to make the required lease payments, we continue for a period of time to be liable for lease payments to the landlords of several of the leased stores. The purchaser's obligations under the lease are guaranteed to us by certain principals and affiliates of the purchaser. However, the purchaser has exited the outlet business and is attempting to terminate the leases with the landlords. Consequently, we expect that our continuing obligations under each lease will be extinguished in connection with each termination. As of August 2, 2014, our maximum liability in connection with the assigned leases was $6 million.