8-K - Q1 2013 Asbestos and ER
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
WASHINGTON, DC 20549
PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE
SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
Date of Report (Date of earliest event reported): April 22, 2013
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation)
(Commission File Number)
(IRS Employer Identification No.)
100 First Stamford Place, Stamford, CT
(Address of principal executive offices)
Registrant’s telephone number, including area code: (203) 363-7300
(Former name or former address, if changed since last report)
Check the appropriate box below if the Form 8-K filing is intended to simultaneously satisfy the filing obligation of the registrant under any of the following provisions:
Written communications pursuant to Rule 425 under the Securities Act (17 CFR 230.425)
Soliciting material pursuant to Rule 14a-12 under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.14a-12)
Pre-commencement communications pursuant to Rule 14d-2(b) under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.14d-2(b))
Pre-commencement communications pursuant to Rule 13e-4(c) under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.13e-4(c))
SECTION 2 – FINANCIAL INFORMATION
Results of Operations and Financial Condition.
On April 22, 2013, Crane Co. announced its results of operations for the quarter ended March 31, 2013. Copies of the related press release and quarterly financial data supplement are being furnished as Exhibits 99.1 and 99.2 to this Form 8-K.
The information furnished under Item 2.02 of this Current Report on Form 8-K, including Exhibits 99.1 and 99.2, is not deemed to be “filed” for purposes of Section 18 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.
SECTION 5 – Corporate Governance and Management
Submission of Matters to a Vote of Security Holders
The Annual Meeting of Shareholders was held on April 22, 2013.
The following four Directors were elected to serve for three years until the Annual Meeting in 2016.
Mr. Richard S. Forte
Ms. Ellen McClain Haime
Ms. Jennifer M. Pollino
Mr. James L. Tullis
The following Director was elected to serve for two years until the Annual Meeting in 2015.
Mr. Ronald C. Lindsay
A nominee for the Board of Directors in an uncontested election is elected if more votes are cast in favor of the nominee than are cast against the nominee by the holders of shares present in person or represented by proxy and entitled to vote at the meeting. Abstentions and broker non-votes have no effect on the election of Directors.
In addition, the shareholders approved the selection of Deloitte & Touche LLP as independent auditors for the Company for 2013.
The shareholders approved the compensation of the named executive officers as disclosed in the Proxy Statement.
The shareholders approved the 2013 Stock Incentive Plan.
Approval of these three proposals required the affirmative vote of a majority of the votes cast by the holders of shares of common stock present in person or represented by proxy and entitled to vote at the meeting. With respect to the proposal to approve the 2013 Stock Incentive Plan, the total votes cast on the proposal were required to represent more than 50% of the voting power of the common stock outstanding and entitled to vote on the proposal. Abstentions and broker non-votes are not treated as votes cast and therefore had no effect on these proposals.
Item 5.02 (c)
Appointment of Principal Officers
On April 22, 2013, Crane Co. announced that Eric C. Fast, Chief Executive Officer, will retire from Crane Co. in January 2014. Mr. Fast joined Crane in 1999 as President and Chief Operating Officer and was promoted to Chief Executive Officer in January 2001. He will be succeeded by Max H. Mitchell, currently President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Mitchell, 49, joined Crane in 2004 as Vice President of Operational Excellence, was promoted to President of Fluid Handling in 2005, became Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in May 2011, and was appointed President of Crane Co. in January 2013.
Crane Co.’s press release dated April 22, 2013 regarding these changes appears as Exhibit 99.3 to this Form 8-K current report.
SECTION 8 – OTHER EVENTS
Information Regarding Claims and Costs in the Tort System
As of March 31, 2013, the Company was a defendant in cases filed in numerous state and federal courts alleging injury or death as a result of exposure to asbestos. Activity related to asbestos claims during the periods indicated was as follows:
Three Months Ended March 31,
Year Ended December 31,
As of January 1, 2010, the Company was named in 36,448 maritime actions which had been administratively dismissed by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania ("MARDOC claims"), and therefore were not classified as active claims. In addition, the Company was named in 8 new maritime actions in 2010 (also not classified as active claims). Through March 31, 2013, pursuant to an ongoing review process initiated by the Court, 26,562 claims were permanently dismissed, and 3,391 claims were classified as active, of which 457 claims were subsequently dismissed, and 2,934 claims remain active (and have been added to "Ending claims"). The Company expects that more of the remaining 6,503 maritime actions will be activated, or permanently dismissed, as the Court's review process continues. The number on this line reflects the number of previously inactive MARDOC claims that were newly activated in a given period.
Of the 56,208 pending claims as of March 31, 2013, approximately 19,200 claims were pending in New York, approximately 9,900 claims were pending in Texas, approximately 5,500 claims were pending in Mississippi, and approximately 4,600 claims were pending in Ohio, all jurisdictions in which legislation or judicial orders restrict the types of claims that can proceed to trial on the merits.
Substantially all of the claims the Company resolves are either dismissed or concluded through settlements. To date, the Company has paid two judgments arising from adverse jury verdicts in asbestos matters. The first payment, in the amount of $2.54 million, was made on July 14, 2008, approximately two years after the adverse verdict in the Joseph Norris matter in California, after the Company had exhausted all post-trial and appellate remedies. The second payment, in the amount of $0.02 million, was made in June 2009 after an adverse verdict in the Earl Haupt case in Los Angeles, California on April 21, 2009.
The Company has tried several cases resulting in defense verdicts by the jury or directed verdicts for the defense by the court, one of which, the Patrick O'Neil claim in Los Angeles, was reversed on appeal. In an opinion dated January 12, 2012, the California Supreme Court reversed the decision of the Court of Appeal and instructed the trial court to enter a judgment of nonsuit in favor of the defendants.
On March 14, 2008, the Company received an adverse verdict in the James Baccus claim in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with compensatory damages of $2.45 million and additional damages of $11.9 million. The Company's post-trial motions were denied by order dated January 5, 2009. The case was concluded by settlement in the fourth quarter of 2010 during the pendency of the Company's appeal to the Superior Court of Pennsylvania.
On May 16, 2008, the Company received an adverse verdict in the Chief Brewer claim in Los Angeles, California. The amount of the judgment entered was $0.68 million plus interest and costs. The Company pursued an appeal in this matter, and on August 2, 2012 the California Court of Appeal reversed the judgment and remanded the matter to the trial court for entry of judgment notwithstanding the verdict in favor of the Company on the ground that this claim could not be distinguished factually from the Patrick O'Neil case decided in the Company's favor by the California Supreme Court.
On February 2, 2009, the Company received an adverse verdict in the Dennis Woodard claim in Los Angeles, California. The jury found that the Company was responsible for one-half of one percent (0.5%) of plaintiffs' damages of $16.93 million; however,
based on California court rules regarding allocation of damages, judgment was entered against the Company in the amount of $1.65 million, plus costs. Following entry of judgment, the Company filed a motion with the trial court requesting judgment in the Company's favor notwithstanding the jury's verdict, and on June 30, 2009, the court advised that the Company's motion was granted and judgment was entered in favor of the Company. The trial court's ruling was affirmed on appeal by order dated August 25, 2011. The plaintiffs appealed that ruling to the Supreme Court of California, which dismissed the appeal on February 29, 2012; the matter is now finally determined in the Company's favor.
On March 23, 2010, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, state court jury found the Company responsible for a 1/11th share of a $14.5 million verdict in the James Nelson claim, and for a 1/20th share of a $3.5 million verdict in the Larry Bell claim. On February 23, 2011, the court entered judgment on the verdicts in the amount of $0.2 million against the Company, only, in Bell, and in the amount of $4.0 million, jointly, against the Company and two other defendants in Nelson, with additional interest in the amount of $0.01 million being assessed against the Company, only, in Nelson. All defendants, including the Company, and the plaintiffs took timely appeals of certain aspects of those judgments. The Nelson appeal is pending. The Company resolved the Bell appeal by settlement, which is reflected in the settled claims for 2012.
On August 17, 2011, a New York City state court jury found the Company responsible for a 99% share of a $32 million verdict on the Ronald Dummitt claim. The Company filed post-trial motions seeking to overturn the verdict, to grant a new trial, or to reduce the damages, which the Company argued were excessive under New York appellate case law governing awards for non-economic losses. The Court held oral argument on these motions on October 18, 2011 and issued a written decision on August 21, 2012 confirming the jury's liability findings but reducing the award of damages to $8 million. At plaintiffs' request, the Court entered a judgment in the amount of $4.9 million against the Company, taking into account settlement offsets and accrued interest under New York law. The Company has appealed.
On March 9, 2012, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, state court jury found the Company responsible for a 1/8th share of a $123,000 verdict in the Frank Paasch claim. The Company and plaintiffs filed post-trial motions. On May 31, 2012, on plaintiffs' motion, the Court entered an order dismissing the claim against the Company, with prejudice, and without any payment.
On August 29, 2012, the Company received an adverse verdict in the William Paulus claim in Los Angeles, California. The jury found that the Company was responsible for ten percent (10%) of plaintiffs' non-economic damages of $6.5 million, plus a portion of Plaintiffs' economic damages of $0.4 million. Based on California court rules regarding allocation of damages, judgment was entered in the amount of $0.8 million against the Company. The Company filed post-trial motions requesting judgment in the Company's favor notwithstanding the jury's verdict, which were denied. The Company has appealed.
On October 23, 2012, the Company received an adverse verdict in the Gerald Suttner claim in Buffalo, New York. The jury found that the Company was responsible for four percent (4%) of plaintiffs' damages of $3 million. The Company filed post-trial motions requesting judgment in the Company's favor notwithstanding the jury's verdict, which were denied. The court entered a judgment of $0.1 million against the Company. The Company will pursue an appeal.
On November 28, 2012, the Company received an adverse verdict in the James Hellam claim in Oakland, CA. The jury found that the Company was responsible for seven percent (7%) of plaintiffs' non-economic damages of $ 4.5 million, plus a portion of their economic damages of $0.9 million. Based on California court rules regarding allocation of damages, judgment was entered against the Company in the amount of $1.282 million. The Company filed post-trial motions requesting judgment in the Company's favor notwithstanding the jury's verdict and also requesting that settlement offsets be applied to reduce the judgment in accordance with California law. On January 31, 2013, the court entered an order disposing partially of that motion. On March 1, 2013, the Company filed an appeal regarding the portions of the motion that were denied. The court is expected to resolve the remainder of the issues raised shortly, after which the Company will appeal any remaining issues.
On February 25, 2013, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, state court jury found the Company responsible for a 1/10th share of a $2,500,000 verdict ($250,000) in the Thomas Amato claim and a 1/5th share of a $2,300,000 verdict ($460,000) in the Frank Vinciguerra claim, which were consolidated for trial. The Company filed post-trial motions requesting judgments in the Company's favor notwithstanding the jury's verdicts or new trials, and also requesting that settlement offsets be applied to reduce the judgment in accordance with Pennsylvania law. The Company plans to pursue an appeal if necessary.
On March 1, 2013, a New York City state court jury entered a $35 million verdict against the Company in the Ivo Peraica claim. The Company filed post-trial motions seeking to overturn the verdict, to grant a new trial, or to reduce the damages, which the Company argues were excessive under New York appellate case law governing awards for non-economic losses and further were subject to settlement offsets. The plaintiffs have requested judgment against the Company in the amount of $19.3 million. The matters remain pending before the trial court. The Company plans to pursue an appeal if necessary.
Such judgment amounts are not included in the Company's incurred costs until all available appeals are exhausted and the final payment amount is determined.
The gross settlement and defense costs incurred (before insurance recoveries and tax effects) for the Company for the three-month periods ended March 31, 2013 and 2012 totaled $20.5 million and $23.6 million, respectively. In contrast to the recognition of settlement and defense costs, which reflect the current level of activity in the tort system, cash payments and receipts generally lag the tort system activity by several months or more, and may show some fluctuation from quarter to quarter. Cash payments of settlement amounts are not made until all releases and other required documentation are received by the Company, and reimbursements of both settlement amounts and defense costs by insurers may be uneven due to insurer payment practices, transitions from one insurance layer to the next excess layer and the payment terms of certain reimbursement agreements. The Company's total pre-tax payments for settlement and defense costs, net of funds received from insurers, for the three-month periods ended March 31, 2013 and 2012 totaled $10.5 million and $18.2 million, respectively. Detailed below are the comparable amounts for the periods indicated.
Three Months Ended March 31,
Year Ended December 31,
Settlement / indemnity costs incurred (1)
Defense costs incurred (1)
Total costs incurred
Settlement / indemnity payments
Pre-tax cash payments
Before insurance recoveries and tax effects.
The amounts shown for settlement and defense costs incurred, and cash payments, are not necessarily indicative of future period amounts, which may be higher or lower than those reported.
Cumulatively through March 31, 2012, the Company has resolved (by settlement or dismissal) approximately 91,000 claims, not including the MARDOC claims referred to above. The related settlement cost incurred by the Company and its insurance carriers is approximately $375 million, for an average settlement cost per resolved claim of approximately $4,100. The average settlement cost per claim resolved during the years ended December 31, 2012, 2011 and 2010 was $6,300, $4,123 and $7,036, respectively. Because claims are sometimes dismissed in large groups, the average cost per resolved claim, as well as the number of open claims, can fluctuate significantly from period to period. In addition to large group dismissals, the nature of the disease and corresponding settlement amounts for each claim resolved will also drive changes from period to period in the average settlement cost per claim. Accordingly, the average cost per resolved claim is not considered in the Company's periodic review of its estimated asbestos liability. For a discussion regarding the four most significant factors affecting the liability estimate, see “Effects on the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements”.
Effects on the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements
The Company has retained the firm of Hamilton, Rabinovitz & Associates, Inc. (“HR&A”), a nationally recognized expert in the field, to assist management in estimating the Company's asbestos liability in the tort system. HR&A reviews information provided by the Company concerning claims filed, settled and dismissed, amounts paid in settlements and relevant claim information such as the nature of the asbestos-related disease asserted by the claimant, the jurisdiction where filed and the time lag from filing to disposition of the claim. The methodology used by HR&A to project future asbestos costs is based largely on the Company's experience during a base reference period of eleven quarterly periods (consisting of the two full preceding calendar years and three additional quarterly periods to the estimate date) for claims filed, settled and dismissed. The Company's experience is then compared to the results of widely used previously conducted epidemiological studies estimating the number of individuals likely to develop asbestos-related diseases. Those studies were undertaken in connection with national analyses of the population of workers believed to have been exposed to asbestos. Using that information, HR&A estimates the number of future claims that would be filed against the Company and estimates the aggregate settlement or indemnity costs that would be incurred to resolve both pending and future claims based upon the average settlement costs by disease during the reference period. This methodology has been accepted by numerous courts. After discussions with the Company, HR&A augments its liability estimate for the costs of defending asbestos claims in the tort system using a forecast from the Company which is based upon discussions with its defense counsel. Based on this information, HR&A compiles an estimate of the Company's asbestos liability for pending and future claims,
based on claim experience during the reference period and covering claims expected to be filed through the indicated forecast period. The most significant factors affecting the liability estimate are (1) the number of new mesothelioma claims filed against the Company, (2) the average settlement costs for mesothelioma claims, (3) the percentage of mesothelioma claims dismissed against the Company and (4) the aggregate defense costs incurred by the Company. These factors are interdependent, and no one factor predominates in determining the liability estimate. Although the methodology used by HR&A can be applied to show claims and costs for periods subsequent to the indicated period (up to and including the endpoint of the asbestos studies referred to above), management believes that the level of uncertainty regarding the various factors used in estimating future asbestos costs is too great to provide for reasonable estimation of the number of future claims, the nature of such claims or the cost to resolve them for years beyond the indicated estimate.
In the Company's view, the forecast period used to provide the best estimate for asbestos claims and related liabilities and costs is a judgment based upon a number of trend factors, including the number and type of claims being filed each year; the jurisdictions where such claims are filed, and the effect of any legislation or judicial orders in such jurisdictions restricting the types of claims that can proceed to trial on the merits; and the likelihood of any comprehensive asbestos legislation at the federal level. In addition, the dynamics of asbestos litigation in the tort system have been significantly affected over the past five to ten years by the substantial number of companies that have filed for bankruptcy protection, thereby staying any asbestos claims against them until the conclusion of such proceedings, and the establishment of a number of post-bankruptcy trusts for asbestos claimants, which are estimated to provide $36 billion for payments to current and future claimants. These trend factors have both positive and negative effects on the dynamics of asbestos litigation in the tort system and the related best estimate of the Company's asbestos liability, and these effects do not move in a linear fashion but rather change over multi-year periods. Accordingly, the Company's management continues to monitor these trend factors over time and periodically assesses whether an alternative forecast period is appropriate.
Each quarter, HR&A compiles an update based upon the Company's experience in claims filed, settled and dismissed during the updated reference period (consisting of the preceding eleven quarterly periods) as well as average settlement costs by disease category (mesothelioma, lung cancer, other cancer and non-malignant conditions including asbestosis) during that period. In addition to this claims experience, the Company also considers additional quantitative and qualitative factors such as the nature of the aging of pending claims, significant appellate rulings and legislative developments, and their respective effects on expected future settlement values. As part of this process, the Company also takes into account trends in the tort system such as those enumerated above. Management considers all these factors in conjunction with the liability estimate of HR&A and determines whether a change in the estimate is warranted.
Liability Estimate. With the assistance of HR&A, effective as of December 31, 2011, the Company updated and extended its estimate of the asbestos liability, including the costs of settlement or indemnity payments and defense costs relating to currently pending claims and future claims projected to be filed against the Company through 2021. The Company's previous estimate was for asbestos claims filed or projected to be filed through 2017. As a result of this updated estimate, the Company recorded an additional liability of $285 million as of December 31, 2011. The Company's decision to take this action at such date was based on several factors which contribute to the Company's ability to reasonably estimate this liability for the additional period noted. First, the number of mesothelioma claims (which although constituting approximately 8% of the Company's total pending asbestos claims, have accounted for approximately 90% of the Company's aggregate settlement and defense costs) being filed against the Company and associated settlement costs have recently stabilized. In the Company's opinion, the outlook for mesothelioma claims expected to be filed and resolved in the forecast period is reasonably stable. Second, there have been favorable developments in the trend of case law which has been a contributing factor in stabilizing the asbestos claims activity and related settlement costs. Third, there have been significant actions taken by certain state legislatures and courts over the past several years that have reduced the number and types of claims that can proceed to trial, which has been a significant factor in stabilizing the asbestos claims activity. Fourth, the Company has now entered into coverage-in-place agreements with almost all of its excess insurers, which enables the Company to project a more stable relationship between settlement and defense costs paid by the Company and reimbursements from its insurers. Taking all of these factors into account, the Company believes that it can reasonably estimate the asbestos liability for pending claims and future claims to be filed through 2021. While it is probable that the Company will incur additional charges for asbestos liabilities and defense costs in excess of the amounts currently provided, the Company does not believe that any such amount can be reasonably estimated beyond 2021. Accordingly, no accrual has been recorded for any costs which may be incurred for claims which may be made subsequent to 2021.
Management has made its best estimate of the costs through 2021 based on the analysis by HR&A completed in January 2012. Through March 31, 2013, the Company's actual experience during the updated reference period for mesothelioma claims filed and dismissed generally approximated the assumptions in the Company's liability estimate. In addition to this claims experience, the Company considered additional quantitative and qualitative factors such as the nature of the aging of pending claims, significant appellate rulings and legislative developments, and their respective effects on expected future settlement values. Based on this evaluation, the Company determined that no change in the estimate was warranted for the period ended March 31, 2013. Nevertheless, if certain factors show a pattern of sustained increase or decrease, the liability could change materially; however,
all the assumptions used in estimating the asbestos liability are interdependent and no single factor predominates in determining the liability estimate. Because of the uncertainty with regard to and the interdependency of such factors used in the calculation of its asbestos liability, and since no one factor predominates, the Company believes that a range of potential liability estimates beyond the indicated forecast period cannot be reasonably estimated.
A liability of $894 million was recorded as of December 31, 2011 to cover the estimated cost of asbestos claims now pending or subsequently asserted through 2021, of which approximately 80% is attributable to settlement and defense costs for future claims projected to be filed through 2021. The liability is reduced when cash payments are made in respect of settled claims and defense costs. The liability was $773 million as of March 31, 2013. It is not possible to forecast when cash payments related to the asbestos liability will be fully expended; however, it is expected such cash payments will continue for a number of years past 2021, due to the significant proportion of future claims included in the estimated asbestos liability and the lag time between the date a claim is filed and when it is resolved. None of these estimated costs have been discounted to present value due to the inability to reliably forecast the timing of payments. The current portion of the total estimated liability at March 31, 2013 was $92 million and represents the Company's best estimate of total asbestos costs expected to be paid during the twelve-month period. Such amount is based upon the HR&A model together with the Company's prior year payment experience for both settlement and defense costs.
Insurance Coverage and Receivables. Prior to 2005, a significant portion of the Company's settlement and defense costs were paid by its primary insurers. With the exhaustion of that primary coverage, the Company began negotiations with its excess insurers to reimburse the Company for a portion of its settlement and/or defense costs as incurred. To date, the Company has entered into agreements providing for such reimbursements, known as “coverage-in-place”, with eleven of its excess insurer groups. Under such coverage-in-place agreements, an insurer's policies remain in force and the insurer undertakes to provide coverage for the Company's present and future asbestos claims on specified terms and conditions that address, among other things, the share of asbestos claims costs to be paid by the insurer, payment terms, claims handling procedures and the expiration of the insurer's obligations. Similarly, under a variant of coverage-in-place, the Company has entered into an agreement with a group of insurers confirming the aggregate amount of available coverage under the subject policies and setting forth a schedule for future reimbursement payments to the Company based on aggregate indemnity and defense payments made. In addition, with nine of its excess insurer groups, the Company entered into policy buyout agreements, settling all asbestos and other coverage obligations for an agreed sum, totaling $82.1 million in aggregate. Reimbursements from insurers for past and ongoing settlement and defense costs allocable to their policies have been made in accordance with these coverage-in-place and other agreements. All of these agreements include provisions for mutual releases, indemnification of the insurer and, for coverage-in-place, claims handling procedures. With the agreements referenced above, the Company has concluded settlements with all but one of its solvent excess insurers whose policies are expected to respond to the aggregate costs included in the updated liability estimate. That insurer, which issued a single applicable policy, has been paying the shares of defense and indemnity costs the Company has allocated to it, subject to a reservation of rights. There are no pending legal proceedings between the Company and any insurer contesting the Company's asbestos claims under its insurance policies.
In conjunction with developing the aggregate liability estimate referenced above, the Company also developed an estimate of probable insurance recoveries for its asbestos liabilities. In developing this estimate, the Company considered its coverage-in-place and other settlement agreements described above, as well as a number of additional factors. These additional factors include the financial viability of the insurance companies, the method by which losses will be allocated to the various insurance policies and the years covered by those policies, how settlement and defense costs will be covered by the insurance policies and interpretation of the effect on coverage of various policy terms and limits and their interrelationships. In addition, the timing and amount of reimbursements will vary because the Company's insurance coverage for asbestos claims involves multiple insurers, with different policy terms and certain gaps in coverage. In addition to consulting with legal counsel on these insurance matters, the Company retained insurance consultants to assist management in the estimation of probable insurance recoveries based upon the aggregate liability estimate described above and assuming the continued viability of all solvent insurance carriers. Based upon the analysis of policy terms and other factors noted above by the Company's legal counsel, and incorporating risk mitigation judgments by the Company where policy terms or other factors were not certain, the Company's insurance consultants compiled a model indicating how the Company's historical insurance policies would respond to varying levels of asbestos settlement and defense costs and the allocation of such costs between such insurers and the Company. Using the estimated liability as of December 31, 2011 (for claims filed or expected to be filed through 2021), the insurance consultant's model forecasted that approximately 25% of the liability would be reimbursed by the Company's insurers. While there are overall limits on the aggregate amount of insurance available to the Company with respect to asbestos claims, those overall limits were not reached by the total estimated liability currently recorded by the Company, and such overall limits did not influence the Company in its determination of the asset amount to record. The proportion of the asbestos liability that is allocated to certain insurance coverage years, however, exceeds the limits of available insurance in those years. The Company allocates to itself the amount of the asbestos liability (for claims filed or expected to be filed through 2021) that is in excess of available insurance coverage allocated to such years. An asset of $225 million was recorded as of December 31, 2011 representing the probable insurance reimbursement for such claims expected through 2021. The asset is reduced as reimbursements and other payments from insurers are received. The asset was $193 million as of March 31, 2013.
The Company reviews the aforementioned estimated reimbursement rate with its insurance consultants on a periodic basis in order to confirm its overall consistency with the Company's established reserves. The reviews encompass consideration of the performance of the insurers under coverage-in-place agreements and the effect of any additional lump-sum payments under policy buyout agreements. Since December 2011, there have been no developments that have caused the Company to change the estimated 25% rate, although actual insurance reimbursements vary from period to period, and will decline over time, for the reasons cited above.
Uncertainties. Estimation of the Company's ultimate exposure for asbestos-related claims is subject to significant uncertainties, as there are multiple variables that can affect the timing, severity and quantity of claims and the manner of their resolution. The Company cautions that its estimated liability is based on assumptions with respect to future claims, settlement and defense costs based on past experience that may not prove reliable as predictors. A significant upward or downward trend in the number of claims filed, depending on the nature of the alleged injury, the jurisdiction where filed and the quality of the product identification, or a significant upward or downward trend in the costs of defending claims, could change the estimated liability, as would substantial adverse verdicts at trial that withstand appeal. A legislative solution, structured settlement transaction, or significant change in relevant case law could also change the estimated liability.
The same factors that affect developing estimates of probable settlement and defense costs for asbestos-related liabilities also affect estimates of the probable insurance reimbursements, as do a number of additional factors. These additional factors include the financial viability of the insurance companies, the method by which losses will be allocated to the various insurance policies and the years covered by those policies, how settlement and defense costs will be covered by the insurance policies and interpretation of the effect on coverage of various policy terms and limits and their interrelationships. In addition, due to the uncertainties inherent in litigation matters, no assurances can be given regarding the outcome of any litigation, if necessary, to enforce the Company's rights under its insurance policies or settlement agreements.
Many uncertainties exist surrounding asbestos litigation, and the Company will continue to evaluate its estimated asbestos-related liability and corresponding estimated insurance reimbursement as well as the underlying assumptions and process used to derive these amounts. These uncertainties may result in the Company incurring future charges or increases to income to adjust the carrying value of recorded liabilities and assets, particularly if the number of claims and settlement and defense costs change significantly, or if there are significant developments in the trend of case law or court procedures, or if legislation or another alternative solution is implemented; however, the Company is currently unable to estimate such future changes and, accordingly, while it is probable that the Company will incur additional charges for asbestos liabilities and defense costs in excess of the amounts currently provided, the Company does not believe that any such amount can be reasonably determined beyond 2021. Although the resolution of these claims may take many years, the effect on the results of operations, financial position and cash flow in any given period from a revision to these estimates could be material.
SECTION 9 – FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND EXHIBITS
Financial Statements and Exhibits.
Earnings Press Release dated April 22, 2013, issued by Crane Co.
Crane Co. Quarterly Financial Data Supplement for the quarter ended March 31, 2013
Press Release dated April 22, 2013, issued by Crane Co.
Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Registrant has duly caused this report to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned hereunto duly authorized.
April 22, 2013
/s/ Richard A. Maue
Richard A. Maue
Vice President - Finance
Chief Financial Officer
Earnings Press Release dated April 22, 2013, issued by Crane Co.
Crane Co. Quarterly Financial Data Supplement for the quarter ended March 31, 2013
Press Release dated April 22, 2013, issued by Crane Co.