COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
|9 Months Ended|
Sep. 30, 2023
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES||COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
On March 17, 2015, Michael Ruth filed a shareholder derivative suit in Nevada District Court alleging breach of fiduciary duty and gross mismanagement (the “Ruth Complaint”). The claims were premised on the same events that were the subject of a purported class action filed in the Southern District of New York on April 23, 2014 (the “Sallustro Case”). On July 2, 2019, the court in the Sallustro Case entered a final order dismissing the complaint with prejudice. The Company did not make any settlement payment, and at no time was there a finding of wrongdoing by the Company or any of its directors. Regarding the Ruth Complaint, the parties previously agreed to stay the action pending the conclusion of discovery in the Sallustro Case. Once the Sallustro Case was dismissed, the stay was lifted. Plaintiff’s counsel later informed the Court that Mr. Ruth sold his shares of CVSI stock and thus he no longer had standing to pursue this claim. However, the Court allowed plaintiff’s counsel to substitute CVSI shareholder Otilda Lamont as the named plaintiff. On September 20, 2019, defendants filed a motion to dismiss the Ruth Complaint and the court issued a ruling denying the motion to dismiss on November 24, 2020. A Third Amended Complaint was filed on December 11, 2020 substituting Otilda Lamont as plaintiff. The Company filed an answer to the Ruth complaint on January 11, 2021. The parties agreed to a settlement in principle in January 2022 whereby the Company agreed to make certain corporate governance reforms in exchange for dismissal of the lawsuit. Plaintiff filed a motion for preliminary approval of proposed settlement on June 1, 2022. The court granted preliminary approval of the proposed settlement on February 7, 2023. A hearing seeking final approval of the proposed settlement was held on May 15, 2023, and the court indicated it would likely approve the proposed settlement and reschedule the hearing with regard to plaintiff's motion for attorney's fees. On June 23, 2023, the Company received notice of a court order dated May 23, 2023 without any hearing, granting plaintiff's motion for attorney's fees and expenses of approximately $250,000, which the Company accrued as of September 30, 2023. On July 19, 2023, the Company requested to vacate the court order from May 23, 2023 and set a hearing date. If the court grants final approval, the Company will have 60 days to implement the corporate governance reforms.
On December 3, 2019, Michelene Colette and Leticia Shaw filed a putative class action complaint in the Central District of California, alleging the labeling on the Company’s products violated the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938 (the “Colette Complaint”). On February 6, 2020, the Company filed a motion to dismiss the Colette Complaint. Instead of opposing the Company's motion, plaintiffs elected to file an amended complaint on February 25, 2020. On March 10, 2020, the Company filed a motion to dismiss the amended complaint. The court issued a ruling on May 22, 2020 that stayed this proceeding in its
entirety and dismissed part of the amended complaint. The court's order stated that the portion of the proceeding that is stayed will remain stayed until the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (the "FDA") completes its rulemaking regarding the marketing, including labelling, of CBD ingestible products. However, on January 26, 2023, the FDA announced that it does not intend to pursue rulemaking allowing the use of cannabidiol products in dietary supplements or conventional foods. As a result, on February 13, 2023, Plaintiffs filed a status report with the court asking to have the stay lifted. The Company filed a written opposition. The court has taken no action since Plaintiffs filed that status report, and the case remains stayed pursuant to the court's original order.
On November 5, 2021, Mona Jr. filed a complaint against the Company in Nevada state court seeking to recover federal and state taxes from the Company associated with the RSU release in 2019 - refer also to Note 11. Related Parties, for further information. On December 22, 2021, the Company filed a motion to dismiss the complaint. On September 12, 2022, the court denied the motion to dismiss the case. On November 3, 2022, the court ordered the case into arbitration. On December 6, 2022, Mona Jr. filed a demand for arbitration against the Company and its officers with the American Arbitration Association (the "AAA"). On January 31, 2023, the Company and management filed a case in the San Diego Superior Court for declaratory relief, seeking to enjoin the arbitration on the grounds that Mona Jr. is barred from proceeding with the arbitration under the doctrines of res judicata and judicial estoppel based on the position that Mona Jr. took against the Company in a prior arbitration. On February 2, 2023, the AAA stayed the arbitration for 60 days. On February 14, 2023, the Company filed a motion for preliminary injunction to enjoin Mona Jr. from proceeding with the arbitration. The preliminary injunction motion was scheduled for hearing on October 20, 2023. On March 20, 2023, the Company sought a temporary restraining order to enjoin Mona Jr. from proceeding with the arbitration, which the court denied. After the denial of the temporary restraining order, the Company withdrew its motion for preliminary injunction. On April 5, 2023, the AAA informed the parties that the stay issued on February 2, 2023 had been lifted. On April 28, 2023, the AAA appointed an arbitrator for the matter. On June 6, 2023, the Company's officers filed a motion to dismiss the claims in the arbitration against them, arguing that they are not party to an agreement with Mona Jr. to arbitrate. On July 6, 2023, the Arbitrator issued an order scheduling the hearing on the merits for April 8 through April 12, 2024. On September 12, 2023, the Arbitrator granted in part and denied in part the motion to dismiss the Company's officers. Management intends to vigorously defend the allegations.
In the normal course of business, the Company is a party to a variety of agreements pursuant to which they may be obligated to indemnify the other party. It is not possible to predict the maximum potential amount of future payments under these types of agreements due to the conditional nature of our obligations, and the unique facts and circumstances involved in each particular agreement. Historically, payments made by us under these types of agreements have not had a material effect on our business, results of operations or financial condition.
The entire disclosure for commitments and contingencies.
Reference 1: http://www.xbrl.org/2003/role/disclosureRef