Doug Logan Sues USATF: The Details Of His Lawsuit And Employment Contract
October 21, 2010
Doug Logan filed a wrongful termination lawsuit versus USATF yesterday trying to get USATF to pay him his severance (his salary through 2013).
One of the beauties of the American legal system is when a suit is filed, a lot of information enters the public record. Logan's suit is no different. Logan's initial filing of the suit has revealed USATF offered him $500,000 in severance when it terminated him. The lawsuit also has made public both of Logan's employment contracts with USATF. The juicy details are below.
First to the suit - Logan argues he was terminated without cause and is owed the severance due in his contract. He claims in the suit that USATF offered him $500,000 in severance to not file suit. But Logan dismissed this as the contract clearly states that if Logan is terminated without cause, he is entitled to receive his base salary of $500,000 through the remainder of his contract, which expires in 2013. Logan thus would earn over $1.6 million on the remainder of his contract.
A Look At Logan's Contracts
The best part of the lawsuit is we now get to see everything in Doug Logan's employment contract.
Here's a breakdown of Logan's base salary under the contracts:
|Original Contract Base Salary||New Contract Base Salary|
Bonuses/Perks, Old Contract: Under the old contract, Logan got a bonus of 3% of the increase in sponsorship revenue over the sponsorship revenue average from 2005-2008, and 2% of the increase in memberships. The contract also has a provision that appears to intend to bump Logan's bonus to $140,000 in 2009. Logan also got use of a GM car and USATF had to pay his dues for a country club membership. The bonuses to Logan were capped at $1 million a year. The contract does not appear to
readjust the baseline along the way. So if Logan increased USATF revenues by $5 million in the first year and then they were flat the rest of the contract, Logan would still get a $150,000 bonus each year.
New Contract: Under the new contract, Logan got an extra $48,000 a year in cash to go towards housing in NY, a country club membership, his car, etc. His bonus was now capped at $150,000 total and tied to three areas of his work but how it was to be determined was left to a committee.
Both Logan's contracts are clear that he gets paid his base salary through 2013 if he is terminated without cause. What is cause? Here is what his current contract says:
We're not lawyers, but it seems like USATF has an uphill battle to win the argument that Logan was terminated with cause, as it has to prove Logan willfully continued to fail at material parts of his job. Making their task even harder is they are logically going to have to prove he did it in the narrow time frame of between June 26 and September 13, 2010, as one can reasonably assume USATF isn't going to claim he was not doing his job when they had him sign a contract extension giving him the big raise on June 26th.
Earlier this fall, Logan went public with the info that USATF renegotiated his contract this summer, giving him a raise and thus raising the amount of severance he would get just before it began the process that led to his termination.
At that time, USATF Communications director Jill Geer wrote us saying among other things:
"I would direct you to the quotes of Stephanie Hightower and Jeff Darman in the story, where they point out that the revised/restructured contract did not affect Doug's net pay (simply moved it from one spot to another), nor did it affect the size of any potential 'buy-out' or severance."
We can't definitively speak of Doug's net pay, but the revised contract most definitely increased the size of Logan's severance, as Logan's base salary was increased. The contract revision did help USATF in one area related to severance, as the initial contract did call for Logan to get an extra $140,000 in severance in the year he was terminated.
|Severance Under Original Contract||Severance Under New Contract||Increase In Severance|
|Salary Remaining 2010||$108,500||
|Salary Remaining 2011||$378,000||$500,000||$122,000|
|Salary Remaining 2012||$384,000||$500,000||$116,000|
|Salary Remaining 2013||$390,000||$500,000||$110,000|
|Incentive Payment Due in 2010||$140,000||-$140,000|
|Potential Total Increase In Severance||$245,333|
The only other thing of note in the lawsuit is Logan is asking that USATF pay his attorney fees
. He cites no statutory provision that calls for USATF to pay his attorney fees. However, if there is one on the books for this type of matter, it seems there would be very little incentive for Logan to settle this matter early. Perhaps a lawyer versed in Indiana law can email us about this. Editor's Note: Multiple people have written to say that the last part of the contract says that the prevailing party's "reasonable legal fees" will be paid by the other side. So that means if Logan wins he does get his attorney's fees paid. The good news now is we can expect a reply from USATF on why they fired Logan.
You perhaps want to read the documents yourself: