Commitments and Contingencies
|3 Months Ended|
Mar. 31, 2023
|Commitments And Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|Commitments and Contingencies||
NOTE 7. COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
In the ordinary course of business, we are the subject of, or party to a number of pending or threatened legal actions and administrative proceedings. While many of these matters involve inherent uncertainty, we believe that, other than as described below, the amount of the liability, if any, ultimately incurred with respect to proceedings or claims will not have a material adverse effect on our consolidated financial position as a whole or on our liquidity, capital resources or future annual results of operations.
U.S. Well Services Inc. and U.S. Well Services, LLC (collectively, “USWS”) v. Halliburton Company and Cimarex Energy Co. (collectively, “Halliburton”)
In April 2021, USWS filed a patent infringement suit against Halliburton in United States District Court for the Western District of Texas Waco Division. In the suit, USWS alleges willful infringement of seven U.S. patents based on Halliburton’s “All-Electric Fracturing Fleet.” The trial was previously scheduled for March 2023, but has been postponed to a date yet to be determined in August 2023 or later.
In June 2021, Halliburton filed inter partes review petitions against these USWS patents. In January 2023, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”) entered final written decisions finding certain claims of these patents invalid. In March 2023, USWS filed a notice of appeal of the final written decisions invalidating certain claims of three of these patents. Other appeal deadlines remain open. In May 2022, the Western District of Texas ruled certain claims of five of the USWS patents are invalid.
In May 2022, Halliburton filed an amended answer to this patent infringement suit counterclaiming for declaratory judgment of invalidity of USWS’ patents asserted against Halliburton in this matter and willful infringement of seven of Halliburton’s U.S. patents based on USWS’ clean fleets and conventional fleets. In June 2022, USWS filed inter partes review petitions against four of Halliburton’s patents. In December 2022, the PTAB denied institution of inter partes review against these four patents.
The outcome of Halliburton’s counterclaim against us is uncertain and the ultimate resolution of it could have a material adverse effect on our unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements in the period in which the resolution is recorded.
Halliburton Energy Services, Inc., Halliburton US Technologies, Inc., and Halliburton Group Technologies, Inc. (collectively, “Halliburton”) v. U.S. Well Services, LLC (“USWS”)
In September 2022, Halliburton filed two patent infringement suits against USWS in United States District Court for the Western District of Texas Waco Division. In the first lawsuit, Halliburton alleges willful infringement of three of its previously asserted patents as well as five additional U.S. patents. In the second lawsuit, Halliburton alleges willful infringement of two of its previously asserted patents as well as five additional U.S. patents. Both lawsuits allege infringement based on all of USWS and ProFrac LLC's fleets. The two lawsuits are scheduled together and set for trial in May 2024.
In January 2023, USWS filed amended answers to these patent infringement suits counterclaiming for declaratory judgment of invalidity of Halliburton’s patents asserted against USWS in this matter and willful infringement of two additional USWS’ U.S. patents based on Halliburton’s “All-Electric Fracturing Fleet.” In February 2023, Halliburton filed inter partes review petitions against these USWS patents.
The outcomes of these cases are uncertain and the ultimate resolution of them could have a material adverse effect on our unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements in the period in which the resolution is recorded.
Patterson v. FTS International Manufacturing, LLC and FTS International Services, LLC (collectively, “FTS”)
On June 24, 2015, Joshua Patterson filed a lawsuit in the 115th Judicial District Court of Upshur County, Texas, alleging, among other things, that FTS was negligent with respect to an automobile accident in 2013. Mr. Patterson sought monetary relief of more than $1.0 million. On July 19, 2018, a jury returned a verdict of approximately $100.0 million, including punitive damages, against FTS. The trial court reduced the judgment to approximately $33.0 million on November 12, 2018. FTS's insurance carriers appealed and the Twelfth Court of Appeals reversed the verdict in its entirety on August 26, 2020, remanding the case for a new trial. This litigation was settled in the three months ended March 31, 2023. We had previously met our insurance deductible for this matter and the settlement of this case had no effect on our unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements.
We estimate and provide for potential losses that may arise out of legal proceedings and claims to the extent that such losses are probable and can be reasonably estimated. Significant judgment is required in making these estimates and our final liabilities may ultimately be materially different from these estimates. When preparing our estimates, we consider, among other factors, the progress of each legal proceeding and claim, our experience and the experience of others in similar legal proceedings and claims, and the opinions and views of legal counsel. Legal costs related to litigation contingencies are expensed as incurred.
Tax Receivable Agreement
In connection with our initial public offering, ProFrac Corp. entered into a tax receivable agreement (the “TRA”) with certain holders of limited liability company interests in ProFrac LLC (the “TRA Holders”). The TRA generally provides for payment by ProFrac Corp. to the TRA Holders of 85% of the net cash savings, if any, in U.S. federal, state and local income tax and franchise tax that ProFrac Corp. actually realizes (or is deemed to realize in certain circumstances) as a result of (i) certain increases in tax basis that occur as a result of ProFrac Corp.'s acquisition (or deemed acquisition for U.S. federal income tax purposes) of all or a portion of such TRA Holder’s ProFrac LLC units in connection with the initial public offering or the exercise of the Redemption Right (as defined in the TRA) or the Call Right (as defined in the TRA), and (ii) imputed interest deemed to be paid by ProFrac Corp. as a result of, and additional tax basis arising from, any payments ProFrac Corp. makes under the TRA.
Payments will generally be made under the TRA as ProFrac Corp. realizes actual cash tax savings from the tax benefits covered by the TRA. However, if ProFrac Corp. experiences a Change of Control (as defined in the TRA) or the TRA otherwise terminates early, ProFrac Corp.'s obligations under the TRA would accelerate and ProFrac Corp. would be required to make an immediate payment equal to the present value of the anticipated future payments to be made by it under the TRA. For example, if a Change in Control or other early termination event had occurred on March 31, 2023, we estimate the payment could have ranged up to more than $270 million. There can be no assurance that we will be able to satisfy our obligations under the TRA.
We account for amounts payable under the TRA when we determine that a liability is probable and the amount is reasonably estimable. As of March 31, 2023, the liability from the TRA was $3.3 million.
The entire disclosure for commitments and contingencies.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef