Commitment and Contingencies
|6 Months Ended|
Jun. 30, 2022
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|Commitments and Contingencies||COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
The Company is party to various negotiations and legal proceedings arising in the normal course of business. The Company provides reserves for these matters when a loss is probable and reasonably estimable. The Company does not disclose a range of potential loss because the likelihood of such a loss is remote. In the opinion of management, the ultimate disposition of these matters will not have a material adverse effect on the Company’s financial position, results of operations, cash flows or liquidity.
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (“FMVSS”) Certification and Other Regulatory Matters
On September 22, 2021, we announced the Company decided to suspend deliveries of C-1000 vehicles and recall the vehicles we had already delivered to customers. The new leadership team determined additional testing and modifications to existing vehicles are required to bring the C-1000 vehicles into full compliance with FMVSS. The Company further announced we filed a report with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”) regarding the need for additional testing and vehicle modifications to bring our C-1000 vehicles into full compliance with FMVSS. We indicated our previous statements related to the C-1000’s compliance with NHTSA standards cannot be relied upon and so notified the Securities and Exchange Commission. We also disclosed we identified a number of enhancements to our production process and the design of the C-1000 vehicles to address customer feedback, primarily related to payload capacity.
The certification testing was completed in February 2022. Upon completion of this review, the C-1000 platform was determined to be eligible for certification and reintroduction as a limited production vehicle with constrained cargo capacity. In 2022, Workhorse decided to repurchase all of the C-1000 vehicles involved in the recall announced in September 2021 instead
of repairing them and so notified NHTSA. Because the Company repurchased all of the C-1000 vehicles involved in the recall, it has no further obligations under the recall.
Due to the uncertainties and many variables involved in NHTSA matters, we cannot estimate the ultimate resolution of this matter and whether it will have a material adverse effect on the Company's financial position, results of operations, cash flows or liquidity. We cooperated with NHTSA with respect to the now-completed recall that was announced in September 2021. However, we cannot assure that NHTSA or other government authorities will not attempt to impose potentially significant fines and penalties in response to the recall.
On October 19 and November 1, 2021, the Company received letters from the SEC requesting that it voluntarily provide information relating to (a) the events and trading in its securities leading up to the announcement of the award of a contract by the U.S. Postal Service (the “USPS”) for the manufacture of a postal service vehicle fleet and (b) recognition of revenue, if any, related to purchases of vehicles by certain of the Company’s customers. On November 5, 2021, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) orally informed the Company that it had a related open investigation covering the Company. The Company has not received any subpoena or other request for documents or other information from the DOJ with respect to this investigation. On May 9, 2022, the Company received a letter from the SEC requesting that it voluntarily provide information relating to certain customer sales and customer complaints. The Company is cooperating with the SEC and DOJ investigations. At this point, the Company cannot predict the eventual scope, duration, or outcome of these matters.
During the second quarter of 2021, the Company became aware of a regulatory compliance issue related to our E-Series vehicles that will require retrofitting of such vehicles. Management continues to work on remediation of this issue and does not expect it to have a material impact on the Company’s financial condition and operations. Due to the uncertainties and many variables involved in regulatory matters, we cannot estimate the ultimate resolution of this issue and actual results may differ from our expectations.
The Company, Duane Hughes, Steve Schrader, Robert Willison and Gregory Ackerson are defendants in a putative class action (the “Securities Class Action”) brought in the Central District of California (Case No.2:21-cv-02072) on behalf of purchasers of the Company’s securities from March 10, 2020 through May 10, 2021. The amended complaint in this action, filed by lead plaintiff, Timothy M. Weis, on July 16, 2021, alleges the defendants violated the federal securities laws by intentionally or recklessly making material misrepresentations and/or omissions regarding the Company’s participation in the bidding process to manufacture the new fleet of USPS next generation delivery vehicles, the prospect of the USPS awarding the contract to Workhorse given alleged deficiencies in Workhorse’s proposal, the Company’s manufacturing abilities generally and the Company’s nonbinding “backlog” in its vehicles. Lead plaintiff seeks certification of a class and monetary damages in an indeterminate amount. The Court denied the Company’s motion to dismiss in substantial part, and the Securities Class Action is currently scheduled to begin trial on March 19, 2024. The parties are now engaged in discovery. The Company believes the Securities Class Action is without merit. The parties have scheduled a mediation of the Securities Class Action for August 23, 2022 and there can be no assurance as to the results, if any, of the mediation.
Shareholder Derivative Litigation
A total of seven nearly identical derivative actions were originally filed for breach of fiduciary duty and unjust enrichment against Duane Hughes, Steve Schrader, Stephen Fleming, Robert Willison, Anthony Furey, Gregory Ackerson, H. Benjamin Samuels, Raymond J. Chess, Harry DeMott, Gerald B. Budde, Pamela S. Mader, Michael L. Clark and Jacqueline A. Dedo in state court in Nevada and federal courts in Ohio and California. In these actions, the plaintiffs allege the defendants breached their fiduciary duties by allowing or causing the Company to violate the federal securities laws as alleged in the Securities Class Action discussed above and by selling Company stock and receiving other compensation while allegedly in possession of material non-public information about the prospect of the USPS awarding the contract to an electric vehicle manufacturer given electrifying the USPS’s entire fleet allegedly would be impractical and expensive. The plaintiffs seek damages and disgorgement in an indeterminate amount.
The three derivative cases filed in the Central District of California were consolidated into a single action on June 21, 2021 (under Case No. 2:21-cv-04202). On April 18, 2022, the plaintiffs filed their consolidated amended complaint in the consolidated action. On June 2, 2022, the defendants filed motions to dismiss, which the Company joined in with respect to the arguments related to the plaintiffs’ lack of standing, as well as a motion to stay the case pending resolution of the Securities Class Action. In accordance with the Court’s Scheduling Order of June 22, 2022, plaintiffs filed their opposition to the motion
to stay on July 20, 2022 and have until August 17, 2022 to file their oppositions to the motions to dismiss. The hearing on all of these motions will be on October 17, 2022.
A fourth case, originally filed in the Southern District of Ohio, was transferred to the Central District of California on November 5, 2021 (under Case No. 2:21-cv-08734) and assigned to the same judge who presides over the Securities Class Action and the consolidated Central District of California derivative action. Plaintiffs filed their first amended complaint on May 2, 2022. On July 22, 2022, the Court granted the Defendants’ motion to stay the action pending resolution of the Securities Class Action.
Two further actions, both filed in the Eight Judicial District Court of the State of Nevada in and for Clark County, were consolidated on January 7, 2022 (under Case No. A-21-833050-B). On January 24, 2022, the plaintiffs in the consolidated action in Nevada state court filed their consolidated amended complaint, which was also revised to include the additional allegations made in the Amended Complaint in the Securities Class Action discussed above. On March 22, 2022, the defendants and the Company filed a motion to stay the Nevada state court consolidated action, and the defendants filed motions to dismiss the consolidated action, which the Company joined in with respect to the arguments related to the plaintiffs’ lack of standing. Plaintiffs’ oppositions to these motions were filed on June 3, 2022. Defendants’ replies were filed on July 15, 2022. On August 4, 2022, the court denied the defendants' motion to dismiss the consolidated action, but granted the defendants' motion to stay the action pending resolution of the Securities Class Action.
The most recent shareholder derivative action was filed on June 22, 2022 in the Nevada District Court under Case No. 2:22-cv-00980. The Company’s response is currently due on September 13, 2022.
Although these actions purport to seek recovery on behalf of the Company, the Company will incur certain expenses due to indemnification and advancement obligations with respect to the defendants. The Company understands that defendants believe these actions are without merit and intends to support them as they pursue all legal avenues to defend themselves fully.
No definition available.
The entire disclosure for commitments and contingencies.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef