Commitments, Contingencies, and Asset Retirement Obligations


Commitments, contingencies and asset retirement obligations are three categories of liabilities included within the Codification. Each of these liabilities has important recognition and measurement requirements, but perhaps more importantly for some, detailed disclosure requirements. For some entities, these liabilities represent significant items within their financial statements and/or notes to their financial statements.

This course provides an overview of the accounting and reporting requirements related to commitments, contingencies, and asset retirement obligations. This course primarily involves a detailed review of the U.S. GAAP requirements for each of these liabilities based on principles outlined within ASC Topics 440 (Commitments), 450 (Contingencies), and 410 (Asset Retirement and Environmental Obligations). In addition, this course includes excerpts from U.S. public company regulatory filings to help illustrate the application of the respective guidance included within the ASC Topics.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:
  • identify the accounting guidance related to commitments and contingencies
  • recognize disclosure requirements relating to unconditional purchase obligations
  • recognize reporting requirements related to loss contingencies
  • identify disclosure requirements related to loss contingencies
  • identify the accounting guidance prescribing treatment of asset retirement obligations
  • identify transactions that are within the scope of asset retirement obligations
  • recognize overall recognition, measurement, and subsequent measurement requirements
  • identify presentation and disclosure requirements

Designed For

Practicing CPAs, both in public accounting and business and industry -- controllers, accountants, and other financial accounting personnel 


Knowledge of accounting for liabilities

Advanced Preparation


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