26 Provisions

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Provisions for legal and litigation risks


Provisions for other business risks and restructuring


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The provisions for restructuring relate to the StepUp2020 strategy announced in October 2015. As at 31 December 2017, provisions amounting to CHF 1.0 million for restructuring, covering estimated rebuilding and restoration costs and expenses for social plans were allocated.

The LLB Group is involved in various legal proceedings within the scope of normal banking business. It allocates provisions for ongoing and threatened legal proceedings if, in the opinion of LLB, payments or losses are likely and the amounts can be estimated.

As at 31 December 2017, the LLB Group was involved in various litigation and proceedings, which could have an impact on its financial reporting. The LLB Group endeavours to disclose the claims for damages, the scope of legal proceedings and other relevant information in order for the reader to be able to estimate the possible risk for the LLB Group.

LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG, formerly Liechtensteinische Landesbank (Switzerland) Ltd., is among the category 1 banks which must achieve an individual solution with the US authorities to resolve the US taxation dispute. LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG, formerly Liechtensteinische Landesbank (Switzerland) Ltd., with its registered office in Zurich-Erlenbach, is responsible for the proceedings. LLB (Switzerland) Ltd. ceased its banking operations at the end of 2013 and since October 2014 is no longer subject to supervision by the Swiss Federal Financial Market Authority (FINMA). LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG is cooperating closely with the US authorities and is working with them to achieve a final settlement of the issue, while complying with the prevailing legal regulations. In the opinion of the management, the legal risk of an outflow of resources in connection with the possibility that LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG may not have complied with US law, especially US tax law, was still not unlikely as at 31 December 2017. Based on the calculation criteria applied in the non-prosecution agreement between LLB AG, Vaduz, and the US authorities, as well as the latest information and payments made by other banks, a provision was recorded in the balance sheet by LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG as at 31 December 2017. The management believes the provision set aside is sufficient.

At the start of 2015, LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG, formerly Liechtensteinische Landesbank (Switzerland) Ltd., received two legal claims in connection with an investment project. Several persons, who have no connection with LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG, had endeavoured to persuade an investor to invest a sum in an investment project. The investment project did not exist and the persons acting fraudulently were able to embezzle a part of the investment sum. The claimants have lodged claims against LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG for the payment of damages in respect of a part of the embezzled amount plus interest. LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG denies that the actions of a former employee of LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG led to the loss. At the beginning of October 2017, the High Court of Justice in London ruled at first instance that there had been misconduct on the part of a former employee and that LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG was jointly liable for his misconduct and for the damage caused by him. LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG was not liable for misconduct itself. The ruling is not yet legally binding. The possibility of an appeal is being considered. On the basis of the first instance ruling and the non-suspensive effect of a possible appeal, LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG has deposited an amount of CHF 15.1 million with the court for damages, interest charges and third party attorneys’ fees. These costs were booked as general and administrative costs in accordance with the IFRS accounting regulations. LLB Verwaltung (Switzerland) AG continues to believe that this damage is covered by the insurance company.

Liechtensteinische Landesbank AG has reached an agreement with the German authorities in connection with the untaxed assets of German clients. LLB AG made a one-time payment of EUR 16.7 million in the first half of 2017. This payment is fully covered by provisions for legal and litigation risks and has no adverse effect on the interim financial result. The unrequired portion of the provision of CHF 5.0 million was released through profit and loss. The agreement reached with the authorities in North Rhine-Westphalia to settle the negative legacy of the past establishes clarity and legal certainty. It applies to all German states.