DTV » Topics » What is the basis for selecting particular events as triggering payment with respect to any contract, agreement, plan or arrangement that provides for payment at, following or in connection with any termination or change-in-control?

This excerpt taken from the DTV DEF 14A filed Apr 21, 2008.

What is the basis for selecting particular events as triggering payment with respect to any contract, agreement, plan or arrangement that provides for payment at, following or in connection with any termination or change-in-control?

        We have no individual agreements, arrangements or other programs in which additional compensation is paid upon entering into or completing a change-in-control of the Company, nor is additional compensation or severance payable in the event of termination of employment following a change-in-control of the Company beyond amounts otherwise payable upon termination of employment.

        The Company has entered into employment agreements with other severance compensation arrangements with some of the named executive officers. Based on research on the peer group and general industry conducted by the Consultant and the Committee's own experience, the Company believes that pre-established severance arrangements provide assurances of fair treatment to the executives and help retain key executives for the benefit of the Company. Such agreements support the development of an experienced management team and are competitive with practices among the peer group.

        The Committee has developed the following guidelines for the Company to limit compensation in severance agreements.

    Although common in the entertainment industry, employment and severance agreements should be used only for a limited group of executives.

    Termination of employment for cause should result in the forfeiture of all unpaid compensation, all unpaid cash or stock incentive compensation, and the Company may consider forfeiture of certain benefits that are not protected by federal or state law.

    Death or disability should normally result in payment of compensation earned through that date, plus cash and stock compensation and other employee benefits under the terms and conditions of those plans.

    Voluntary termination of employment or retirement should normally result in payment of compensation earned through that date, plus other vested employee benefits under the terms of

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      the applicable plans and, in the case of retirement, accrued bonus and stock compensation under the terms of the applicable plans.

    For involuntary termination of employment without cause, the value of cash severance arrangements should be limited to compensation normally payable through the end of the employment agreement, but generally not less than one year's base salary and target bonus. Stock compensation should follow the vesting rules set by the Committee in the stock grant's terms and conditions, although the Committee varies from this practice depending on the facts and circumstances. Employee benefits remain payable under the terms and conditions of the benefit plans.
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