COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
|12 Months Ended|
Dec. 31, 2014
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES||
COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
As of December 31, 2014, we were contingently liable for guarantees of indebtedness owed by third parties of $565 million, of which $155 million was related to VIEs. Refer to Note 1 for additional information related to the Company's maximum exposure to loss due to our involvement with VIEs. Our guarantees are primarily related to third-party customers, bottlers, vendors and container manufacturing operations and have arisen through the normal course of business. These guarantees have various terms, and none of these guarantees was individually significant. The amount represents the maximum potential future payments that we could be required to make under the guarantees; however, we do not consider it probable that we will be required to satisfy these guarantees.
We believe our exposure to concentrations of credit risk is limited due to the diverse geographic areas covered by our operations.
The Company is involved in various legal proceedings. We establish reserves for specific legal proceedings when we determine that the likelihood of an unfavorable outcome is probable and the amount of loss can be reasonably estimated. Management has also identified certain other legal matters where we believe an unfavorable outcome is reasonably possible and/or for which no estimate of possible losses can be made. Management believes that the total liabilities to the Company that may arise as a result of currently pending legal proceedings will not have a material adverse effect on the Company taken as a whole.
At the time we acquire or divest our interest in an entity, we sometimes agree to indemnify the seller or buyer for specific contingent liabilities. Management believes that any liability to the Company that may arise as a result of any such indemnification agreements will not have a material adverse effect on the Company taken as a whole.
The Company is involved in various tax matters, with respect to some of which the outcome is uncertain. These audits may result in the assessment of additional taxes that are subsequently resolved with authorities or potentially through the courts. Refer to Note 14.
Risk Management Programs
The Company has numerous global insurance programs in place to help protect the Company from the risk of loss. In general, we are self-insured for large portions of many different types of claims; however, we do use commercial insurance above our self-insured retentions to reduce the Company's risk of catastrophic loss. Our reserves for the Company's self-insured losses are estimated through actuarial procedures of the insurance industry and by using industry assumptions, adjusted for our specific expectations based on our claim history. The Company's self-insurance reserves totaled $530 million and $537 million as of December 31, 2014 and 2013, respectively.
We refer to our employees as "associates." As of December 31, 2014, our Company had approximately 129,200 associates, of which approximately 65,300 associates were located in the United States. Our Company, through its divisions and subsidiaries, is a party to numerous collective bargaining agreements. As of December 31, 2014, approximately 18,000 associates, excluding seasonal hires, in North America were covered by collective bargaining agreements. These agreements typically have terms of three to five years. We currently expect that we will be able to renegotiate such agreements on satisfactory terms when they expire. The Company believes that its relations with its associates are generally satisfactory.
The following table summarizes our minimum lease payments under noncancelable operating leases with initial or remaining lease terms in excess of one year as of December 31, 2014 (in millions):