Commitments and Contingencies
|12 Months Ended|
Dec. 31, 2020
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|Commitments and Contingencies||
8. Commitments and Contingencies
PDN China’s bank account with a balance of approximately $3.1 million was frozen by Guangzhou Police due to the Gatewang Case. The Company has classified this entire cash balance as a long-term asset and is classified in discontinued operations.
In a letter dated October 12, 2017, White Winston Select Asset Funds (“White Winston”) threatened to assert claims against the Company in excess of $2 million based on White Winston’s contention that the Company’s conduct delayed White Winston’s ability to sell shares in the Company during a period when the Company’s stock price was generally falling. On April 30, 2018, White Winston filed a lawsuit, entitled White Winston Select Asset Funds, LLC v. Professional Diversity Network, Inc., No. 18-cv-10844, (the “Federal Action”) in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, asserting federal jurisdiction based on diversity of citizenship. The four-count complaint in the Federal Action alleged that White Winston is entitled to recover compensatory damages of $1,708,233, plus attorneys’ fees, treble damages and other amounts. White Winston served the complaint on July 12, 2018, and the Company moved to dismiss the entire action for failure to state a claim. On October 15, 2018, prior to addressing the motion to dismiss, the Court issued an order noting that White Winston (which is a limited liability company) had failed to allege the citizenship of its members and ordered White Winston to show cause that complete diversity exists between the parties and that the Court had jurisdiction. On October 23, 2018, White Winston dismissed the Federal Action without prejudice. On December 18, 2018, White Winston filed a complaint in Massachusetts Superior Court in Suffolk County in Boston alleging the same claims and rights to relief as in the Federal Action. The Company has moved to once again to dismiss the complaint in its entirety for failure to state a claim. The entire motion package, comprised of the Company’s motion to dismiss and accompanying memorandum, White Winston’s opposition, and the Company’s reply brief, were filed with the court on Monday, March 25, 2019. This motion was not granted.
On October 28, 2020, the Company and White Winston reached a settlement agreement, in which the Company made a cash payment of $250,000 on October 29, 2020 and a second cash payment of $350,000 was paid on February 16, 2021. In addition, the Company issued 150,000 shares of the Company’s common stock in January 2021.
NAPW is a defendant in a Nassau County (NY) Supreme Court case, whereby TL Franklin Avenue Plaza LLC has sued NAPW Case index No. LT-000421/2018, with respect to NAPW’s former Garden City NY Premises. NAPW had surrendered the Premises to the Landlord, and the Landlord has obtained a judgment against NAPW in the amount of $746,142.41. As a result of the judgement order, the Company recorded a $780,000 litigation settlement reserve in the second quarter of 2020, which reflected the judgement order in addition to imputed interest costs and legal fees. NAPW is currently negotiating a settlement with the Landlord.
The Company and its wholly-owned subsidiary, NAPW, Inc., are parties to a proceeding captioned Deborah Bayne, et al. vs. NAPW, Inc. and Professional Diversity Network, Inc., No. 18-cv-3591 (E.D.N.Y.), filed on June 20, 2018 and alleging violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act and certain provisions of the New York Labor Law. The Company disputes that it or its subsidiary violated the applicable laws or that either entity has any liability and intends to vigorously defend against these claims. The matter is in the final stages of discovery and we have completed depositions of relevant witnesses. During the first quarter of 2020, the Company recorded a $450,000 litigation settlement reserve in the event of an unfavorable outcome in this proceeding. In November 2020, both parties entered into mediation proceedings but a settlement was not reached. This matter is scheduled to go to trial in 2021.
We are also generally subject to legal proceedings and litigation arising in the ordinary course of business.
General Legal Matters
From time to time, the Company is involved in legal matters arising in the ordinary course of business. While the Company believes that such matters are currently not material, there can be no assurance that matters arising in the ordinary course of business for which the Company is, or could be, involved in litigation, will not have a material adverse effect on its business, financial condition or results of operations.
The entire disclosure for commitments and contingencies.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef