DIRECTV Group, Inc. v. United States, No. 10-5031 (Fed. Cir. 2012)Annotate this Case
DIRECTV sold business segments. In 1997 it sold defense units to Raytheon, transferring $5,774,655,148 in pension assets and $3,310,028,559 in pension liabilities, a net transfer of $2,464,626,589 in surplus pension assets. In a 2000 sale of satellite business units to Boeing, DIRECTV transferred $1,843,930,981 in pension assets and $1,037,344,156 in liabilities, a net transfer of $806,586,825 in surplus assets. In both transactions, DIRECTV retained a small portion of surplus pension assets. The Government asserted noncompliance with Cost Accounting Standard 413.50(c)(12) (41 U.S.C. 422(f)(1)), which regulates assignment of actuarial gains and losses, valuation of assets of a pension fund, and allocation of pension costs to a contractor’s business segments, and demanded payments of $68,695,891 and of $12,197,704. The Court of Federal Claims granted DIRECTV summary judgment. The Federal Circuit affirmed. The claims court correctly determined that DIRECTV's segment closing obligations could be satisfied by cost savings realized by the Government in successor contracts. The court rejected arguments that the trial court erred by calculating segment closing adjustments based on assets and liabilities of the entire segment, rather than only assets and liabilities that DIRECTV retained and that the Federal Acquisition Regulation required DIRECTV itself to pay any amount due as a segment closing adjustment.