EX-10.27 2 d829495dex1027.htm EX-10.27

Exhibit 10.27

 

 

 

 

CHANGE IN CONTROL AGREEMENT

BETWEEN

 

 

AND

GENUINE PARTS COMPANY

 

 

 

 

 

 


CHANGE IN CONTROL AGREEMENT

 

1. Certain Definitions

 

1

  

2. Change in Control

 

2

  

3. Employment Period

 

3

  

4. Terms of Employment

 

3

  

(a)

Position and Duties

 

3

  

(b)

Compensation

 

4

  

5. Termination of Employment

 

5

  

(a)

Death or Disability

 

5

  

(b)

Cause

 

6

  

(c)

Good Reason

 

6

  

(d)

Notice of Termination

 

7

  

(e)

Date of Termination

 

7

  

6. Obligations of the Company upon Termination

 

8

  

(a)

Termination by Executive for Good Reason; Termination by the Company other than for Cause or Disability

 

8

  

(b)

Death or Disability

 

9

  

(c)

Cause; Other than for Good Reason

 

10

  

(d)

Expiration of Employment Period

 

10

  

7. Non-exclusivity of Rights

 

10

  

8. Full Settlement; No Mitigation

 

10

  

9. Costs of Enforcement

 

11

  

10. Mandatory Reduction of Payments in Certain Events

 

11

  

11. Confidential Information

 

12

  

12. Arbitration

 

13

  

13. Successors

 

13

  

14. Miscellaneous

 

13

  

(a)

Governing Law

 

13

  

(b)

Captions

 

13

  


(c)

Amendments

 

14

  

(d)

Notices

 

14

  

(e)

Severability

 

14

  

(f)

Withholding

 

14

  

(g)

Waivers

 

14

  

(h)

Status Before and After Effective Date

 

14

  

(i)

Indemnification

 

15

  

(j)

Related Agreements

 

15

  

(k)

Counterparts

 

15

  

15. Code Section 409A

 

15

  

 

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CHANGE IN CONTROL AGREEMENT

THIS CHANGE IN CONTROL AGREEMENT (the “Agreement”) is entered into by and between Genuine Parts Company, a Georgia corporation (the “Company”) and                 (“Executive”), as of the                 day of                 201    .

The Board of Directors of the Company (the “Board”), has determined that it is in the best interests of the Company and its shareholders to assure that the Company will have the continued dedication of Executive, notwithstanding the possibility, threat or occurrence of a Change in Control (as defined below) of the Company. The Board believes it is imperative to diminish the inevitable distraction of Executive by virtue of the personal uncertainties and risks created by a threatened or pending Change in Control and to encourage Executive’s full attention and dedication to the Company currently and in the event of any threatened or pending Change in Control, and to provide Executive with compensation and benefits arrangements upon a Change in Control which ensure that the compensation and benefits expectations of Executive will be satisfied. Therefore, in order to accomplish these objectives, the Board has caused the Company to enter into this Agreement.

NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY AGREED AS FOLLOWS:

1. Certain Definitions.

(a) The “Effective Date” shall mean the first date during the Change in Control Period (as defined in Section l(b)) on which a Change in Control (as defined in Section 2) occurs. Anything in this Agreement to the contrary notwithstanding, if a Change in Control occurs and if Executive’s employment with the Company is terminated (either by the Company without Cause or by Executive for Good Reason, as provided later in this Agreement) within six (6) months prior to the date on which the Change in Control occurs, and if it is reasonably demonstrated by Executive that such termination of employment (i) was at the request of a third party who has taken steps reasonably calculated to effect a Change in Control or (ii) otherwise arose in connection with or anticipation of a Change in Control, then for all purposes of this Agreement the “Effective Date” shall mean the date immediately prior to the date of such termination of employment.

(b) The “Change in Control Period” shall mean the period commencing on the original date of this Agreement and ending on the third anniversary of the date hereof; provided, however, that commencing on the date one year after the date hereof, and on each annual anniversary of such date (such date and each annual anniversary thereof shall be hereinafter referred to as the “Renewal Date”), unless previously terminated, the Change in Control Period shall be automatically extended so as


to terminate three years from such Renewal Date, unless at least 60 days prior to the Renewal Date the Company shall give notice to Executive that the Change in Control Period shall not be so extended.

(c) “Code” shall mean the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended from time to time, and includes a reference to the underlying proposed or final regulations.

2. Change in Control. For the purposes of this Agreement, a “Change in Control” shall mean the occurrence of any of the following events:

(a) the acquisition by any individual, entity or group (within the meaning of Section 13(d)(3) or 14(d)(2) of the 1934 Act) (a “Person”) of beneficial ownership (within the meaning of Rule 13d-3 promulgated under the 1934 Act) of 20% or more of the combined voting power of the then outstanding voting securities of the Company entitled to vote generally in the election of directors (the “Outstanding Company Voting Securities”); provided, however, that for purposes of this subsection (a), the following acquisitions shall not constitute a Change in Control: (i) any acquisition by a Person who is on the Effective Date the beneficial owner of 20% or more of the Outstanding Company Voting Securities, (ii) any acquisition directly from the Company, (iii) any acquisition by the Company, (iv) any acquisition by any employee benefit plan (or related trust) sponsored or maintained by the Company or any corporation controlled by the Company, or (v) any acquisition by any corporation pursuant to a transaction which complies with clauses (i), (ii) and (iii) of subsection (c) of this definition; or

(b) individuals who, as of immediately prior to the Effective Date, constitute the Board (the “Incumbent Board”) cease for any reason to constitute at least a majority of the Board; provided, however, that any individual becoming a director subsequent to the Effective Date whose election, or nomination for election by the Company’s shareholders, was approved by a vote of at least a majority of the directors then comprising the Incumbent Board shall be considered as though such individual were a member of the Incumbent Board, but excluding, for this purpose, any such individual whose initial assumption of office occurs as a result of an actual or threatened election contest with respect to the election or removal of directors or other actual or threatened solicitation of proxies or consents by or on behalf of a Person other than the Board; or

(c) consummation of a reorganization, merger, consolidation or share exchange or sale or other disposition of all or substantially all of the assets of the Company (a “Business Combination”), in each case, unless, following such Business Combination, (i) all or substantially all of the individuals and entities who were the beneficial owners of the Outstanding Company Voting Securities immediately prior to such Business Combination beneficially own, directly or indirectly, more than 60% of the combined voting power of the then outstanding voting securities entitled to vote generally in the election of directors of the corporation resulting from such Business Combination

 

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(including, without limitation, a corporation which as a result of such transaction owns the Company or all or substantially all of the Company’s assets either directly or through one or more subsidiaries) in substantially the same proportions as their ownership, immediately prior to such Business Combination of the Outstanding Company Voting Securities, and (ii) no Person (excluding any corporation resulting from such Business Combination or any employee benefit plan (or related trust) of the Company or such corporation resulting from such Business Combination) beneficially owns, directly or indirectly, 20% or more of the combined voting power of the then outstanding voting securities of such corporation except to the extent that such ownership existed prior to the Business Combination, and (iii) at least a majority of the members of the board of directors of the corporation resulting from such Business Combination were members of the Incumbent Board at the time of the execution of the initial agreement, or of the action of the Board, providing for such Business Combination; or

(d) approval by the shareholders of the Company of a complete liquidation or dissolution of the Company.

3. Employment Period. The Company hereby agrees to continue Executive in its employ, and Executive hereby agrees to remain in the employ of the Company subject to the terms and conditions of this Agreement, for the period commencing on the Effective Date and ending on the second anniversary of such date (the “Employment Period”).

4. Terms of Employment.

(a) Position and Duties.

(i) During the Employment Period, (A) Executive’s position (including status, offices, titles and reporting requirements), authority, duties and responsibilities shall be at least commensurate in all material respects with the most significant of those held, exercised and assigned at any time during the 120-day period immediately preceding the Effective Date, and (B) Executive’s services shall be performed at the location where Executive was employed immediately preceding the Effective Date or any office or location less than 50 miles from such location.

(ii) During the Employment Period, and excluding any periods of vacation and sick leave to which Executive is entitled, Executive agrees to devote reasonable attention and time during normal business hours to the business and affairs of the Company and, to the extent necessary to discharge the responsibilities assigned to Executive hereunder, to use Executive’s reasonable best efforts to perform faithfully and efficiently such responsibilities. During the Employment Period it shall not be a violation of this Agreement for Executive to (A) serve on corporate, civic or charitable boards or committees, (B) deliver lectures, fulfill speaking engagements or teach at educational institutions and (C) manage personal investments, so long as such activities do not

 

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significantly interfere with the performance of Executive’s responsibilities as an employee of the Company in accordance with this Agreement. It is expressly understood and agreed that to the extent that any such activities have been conducted by Executive prior to the Effective Date, the continued conduct of such activities (or the conduct of activities similar in nature and scope thereto) subsequent to the Effective Date shall not thereafter be deemed to interfere with the performance of Executive’s responsibilities to the Company.

(b) Compensation.

(i) Base Salary. During the Employment Period, Executive shall receive an annual base salary (“Annual Base Salary”) at a rate at least equal to the rate of base salary in effect on the date of this Agreement or, if greater, on the Effective Date, paid or payable (including any base salary which has been earned but deferred) to Executive by the Company and its affiliated companies. During the Employment Period, the Annual Base Salary shall be reviewed no more than 12 months after the last salary increase awarded to Executive prior to the Effective Date and thereafter at least annually. Any increase in Annual Base Salary shall not serve to limit or reduce any other obligation to Executive under this Agreement. Annual Base Salary shall not be reduced after any such increase and the term Annual Base Salary as used in this Agreement shall refer to Annual Base Salary as so increased. As used in this Agreement, the term “affiliated companies” shall include any company controlled by, controlling or under common control with the Company.

(ii) Annual Bonus. In addition to Annual Base Salary, Executive shall be awarded for each fiscal year ending during the Employment Period an annual target bonus opportunity in cash at least equal (expressed as a percentage of salary) to Executive’s target bonus opportunity for the last full fiscal year prior to the Effective Date (annualized in the event that Executive was not employed by the Company for the whole of such fiscal year) (the “Target Annual Bonus”).

(iii) Incentive, Savings and Retirement Plans. During the Employment Period, Executive shall be entitled to participate in all incentive, savings and retirement plans, practices, policies and programs applicable generally to other peer executives of the Company and its affiliated companies, but in no event shall such plans, practices, policies and programs provide Executive with incentive opportunities, savings opportunities and retirement benefit opportunities, in each case, less favorable, in the aggregate, than the most favorable of those provided by the Company and its affiliated companies for Executive under such plans, practices, policies and programs as in effect at any time during the 120-day period immediately preceding the Effective Date or if more favorable to Executive, those provided generally at any time after the Effective Date to other peer executives of the Company and its affiliated companies.

 

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(iv) Welfare Benefit Plans. During the Employment Period, Executive and/or Executive’s eligible dependents, as the case may be, shall be eligible for participation in and shall receive all benefits under welfare benefit plans, practices, policies and programs provided by the Company and its affiliated companies (including, without limitation, medical, prescription, dental, disability, employee life, group life, accidental death, vision, employee assistance program, flexible spending accounts and business travel accident insurance plans and programs) to the extent applicable generally to other peer executives of the Company and its affiliated companies, but in no event shall such plans, practices, policies and programs provide Executive with benefits which are less favorable, in the aggregate, than the most favorable of such plans, practices, policies and programs in effect for Executive at any time during the 120-day period immediately preceding the Effective Date or, if more favorable to Executive, those provided generally at any time after the Effective Date to other peer executives of the Company and its affiliated companies. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Company reserves the right to limit the Executive’s participation in any welfare benefit plan and to take any action it deems appropriate under rules uniformly applicable to similarly situated Executives who are also participants in such plans, to ensure compliance with the nondiscrimination requirements imposed by the Code.

(v) Expenses, Fringe Benefits and Paid Time Off. During the Employment Period, Executive shall be entitled to expense reimbursement, fringe benefits and paid time off in accordance with the most favorable plans, practices, programs and policies of the Company and its affiliated companies in effect for Executive at any time during the 120-day period immediately preceding the Effective Date or, if more favorable to Executive, as in effect generally at any time thereafter with respect to other peer executives of the Company and its affiliated companies.

5. Termination of Employment.

(a) Death or Disability. Executive’s employment shall terminate automatically upon Executive’s death during the Employment Period. If the Company determines in good faith that the Disability of Executive has occurred during the Employment Period (pursuant to the definition of Disability set forth below), it may give to Executive written notice of its intention to terminate Executive’s employment. In such event, Executive’s employment with the Company shall terminate effective on the 30th day after receipt of such written notice by Executive (the “Disability Effective Date”), provided that, within the 30 days after such receipt, Executive shall not have returned to full-time performance of Executive’s duties. For purposes of this Agreement, “Disability” has the meaning assigned such term in the Company’s long-term disability plan, from time to time in effect. At the request of Executive or his personal representative, the Board’s determination that the Disability of Executive has occurred shall be certified by two physicians mutually agreed upon by Executive, or his personal representative, and the Company. Failing such independent certification (if so requested by Executive), Executive’s termination shall be deemed a termination by the Company without Cause and not a termination by reason of his Disability.

 

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(b) Cause. The Company may terminate Executive’s employment during the Employment Period for Cause or without Cause. For purposes of this Agreement, a termination shall be considered to be for “Cause” if it occurs in conjunction with a determination by the Board that Executive has committed or engaged in either (i) any act that constitutes, on the part of Executive, fraud, dishonesty, breach of fiduciary duty, misappropriation, embezzlement or gross misfeasance of duty; (ii) willful disregard of published Company policies and procedures or codes of ethics; or (iii) conduct by Executive in his office with the Company that is grossly inappropriate and demonstrably likely to lead to material injury to the Company, as determined by the Board acting reasonably and in good faith; provided, that in the case of (ii) or (iii) above, such conduct shall not constitute “Cause” unless the Board shall have delivered to Executive notice setting forth with specificity (A) the conduct deemed to qualify as “Cause”, (B) reasonable action, if any, that would remedy such objection, and (C) a reasonable time (not less than 30 days) within which Executive may take such remedial action, and Executive shall not have taken such specified remedial action within the specified time.

(c) Good Reason. Executive’s employment may be terminated by Executive for Good Reason or without Good Reason. For purposes of this Agreement, “Good Reason” shall mean, without the written consent of Executive:

(i) a material diminution in the Executive’s authority, duties or responsibilities, excluding for this purpose an isolated, insubstantial and inadvertent action not taken in bad faith and which is remedied by the Company promptly after receipt of notice thereof given by Executive;

(ii) a material reduction by the Company in Executive’s Base Salary or Target Annual Bonus, as in effect immediately prior to the Effective Date, as the same may be increased from time to time;

(iii) any failure by the Company to comply with any of the other provisions of Section 4(b) of this Agreement, other than an isolated, insubstantial and inadvertent failure not occurring in bad faith and which is remedied by the Company promptly after receipt of notice thereof given by Executive;

(iv) the Company’s requiring Executive to be based at any office or location other than as provided in Section 4(a)(i)(B) hereof;

(v) any failure by the Company to comply with and satisfy Section 13(c) of this Agreement; or

 

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(vi) the material breach by the Company of any other provision of this Agreement;

Good Reason shall not include Executive’s death or Disability. Executive’s continued employment shall not constitute consent to, or a waiver of rights with respect to, any circumstance constituting Good Reason hereunder. A termination by Executive shall not constitute termination for Good Reason unless Executive shall first have delivered to the Company, within 90 days of the occurrence of the event giving rise to Good Reason, written notice setting forth with specificity the occurrence deemed to give rise to a right to terminate for Good Reason, and there shall have passed a reasonable time (not less than 60 days) within which the Company may take action to correct, rescind or otherwise substantially reverse the occurrence supporting termination for Good Reason as identified by Executive.

(d) Notice of Termination. Any termination by the Company or Executive shall be communicated by Notice of Termination to the other party hereto given in accordance with Section 14(d) of this Agreement. For purposes of this Agreement, a “Notice of Termination” means a written notice which (i) indicates the specific termination provision in this Agreement relied upon, (ii) to the extent applicable, sets forth in reasonable detail the facts and circumstances claimed to provide a basis for termination of Executive’s employment under the provision so indicated, and (iii) if the Date of Termination (as defined below) is other than the date of receipt of such notice, specifies the termination date. The failure by Executive or the Company to set forth in the Notice of Termination any fact or circumstance which contributes to a showing of Good Reason or Cause shall not waive any right of Executive or the Company, respectively, hereunder or preclude Executive or the Company, respectively, from asserting such fact or circumstance in enforcing Executive’s or the Company’s rights hereunder.

(e) Date of Termination. “Date of Termination” means (i) if the Executive’s employment is terminated by the Executive for Good Reason, the date specified in the Notice of Termination, which may not be less than 60 days after the date of delivery of the Notice of Termination; provided that the Company may specify any earlier Date of Termination, (ii) if the Executive’s employment is terminated by the Company for Cause, the date specified in the Notice of Termination, which in the case of a termination for Cause as defined in Section 5(b)(ii) and (iii) may not be less than 30 days after the date of delivery of the Notice of Termination, (iii) if the Executive’s employment is terminated by the Company other than for Cause or Disability, the Date of Termination shall be the date on which the Company notifies the Executive of such termination or any later date specified in such notice, and (iv) if the Executive’s employment is terminated by reason of death or Disability, the Date of Termination shall be the date of death or the Disability Effective Date, as the case may be.

 

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6. Obligations of the Company upon Termination.

(a) Termination by Executive for Good Reason; Termination by the Company other than for Cause or Disability. If, during the Employment Period the Company shall terminate Executive’s employment other than for Cause or Disability, or Executive shall terminate employment for Good Reason, then and, with respect to the payments and benefits described in clauses (i)(B) and (ii) below, only if within 45 days after the Date of Termination Executive executes a Release in substantially the form of Exhibit A hereto (the “Release”) and such release shall not have been revoked:

(i) the Company shall pay to Executive in a single lump sum cash payment within 60 days after the Date of Termination (or any later date that may be required pursuant to Section 15 hereof), the aggregate of the following amounts:

A. the sum of (1) Executive’s Annual Base Salary through the Date of Termination to the extent not theretofore paid, (2) the product of (x) the Executive’s Target Annual Bonus for the year in which the Date of Termination occurs, and (y) a fraction, the numerator of which is the number of days in the current fiscal year through the Date of Termination, and the denominator of which is 365, and (3) any accrued vacation pay to the extent not theretofore paid (the sum of the amounts described in clauses (1), (2) and (3) shall be hereinafter referred to as the “Accrued Obligations”); and

B. a severance payment (the “Severance Payment”) equal to [three][two] times the sum of (x) Executive’s Annual Base Salary as in effect immediately prior to the Date of Termination, and (y) the average of the annual bonuses paid to Executive for the three years prior to the year in which the Date of Termination occurs, or any lesser number of years if Executive has been employed by the Company for less than three full years; and

(ii) the Company shall continue to provide the same level of group health coverage maintained by the Executive on the Date of Termination for up to 24 months from the Date of Termination (the “Welfare Benefits Continuation Period”) provided the Executive makes a timely COBRA election. For purposes of this section 6(a)(ii), group health coverage means any of the following coverages maintained by the Executive on the Date of Termination: medical, dental, vision, or employee assistance benefits under the group health plan(s) sponsored by the Company covering the Executive and his dependents. Such group health coverage is subject to any modifications made to the same group health coverage provided to similarly situated employees, including but not limited to termination of the group health plans sponsored by the Company.

During the first 18-months of the Welfare Benefits Continuation Period (the “COBRA Period”), the Company shall be responsible for the employer-portion of such group health coverage that is self-funded, and the Executive shall be responsible for any

 

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required participant contributions, each determined in the same manner as contributions for similarly situated active employees. During the last six months of the Welfare Benefits Continuation Period (the “Extension Period”), the Executive shall pay the full cost of any self-funded group health coverage, and the Company shall pay to the Executive on the first day of each month during the Extension Period, a payment equal to the monthly cost of such self-funded group health coverage minus the monthly contribution required from similarly situated active employees. The cost of the self-funded group health coverage will be the monthly cost as determined by the Company in accordance with reasonably acceptable means, which shall equal the “applicable premium” under COBRA for such benefits for the applicable year. All payments by the Company during the Extension Period shall be considered taxable income to the Executive.

The Welfare Benefits Continuation Period shall run concurrently with the applicable COBRA period. If the Executive exhausts his maximum COBRA coverage prior to the end of Welfare Benefits Continuation Period, the Company shall provide the Executive with access to employer-sponsored coverage for the remainder of the 24-month period. The Company, in its sole discretion, may terminate such group health coverage before the end of the 24-months if: (1) the Executive’s or dependent’s coverage would otherwise end before the maximum COBRA continuation period under COBRA; or (2) the Executive’s or dependent’s coverage would be terminated if the Executive were an active employee. Notwithstanding anything in this Agreement to the contrary, all payments by the Company for such extended group health coverage during the first 18-months of the Welfare Benefits Continuation Period shall be imputed as income to Executive and any contributions from the Executive will be made on an after-tax basis.

(iii) the terms and conditions of the Company’s long-term incentive plans and any applicable award agreements thereunder shall control with respect to the vesting of any equity or long-term cash incentive awards thereunder then held by Executive; and

(iv) To the extent not theretofore paid or provided, the Company shall timely pay or provide to Executive any other amounts or benefits required to be paid or provided or which Executive is eligible to receive under any plan, program, policy or practice or contract or agreement of the Company and its affiliated companies (such other amounts and benefits shall be hereinafter referred to as the “Other Benefits”).

(b) Death or Disability. If Executive’s employment is terminated by reason of Executive’s death or Disability during the Employment Period, this Agreement shall terminate without further obligations to Executive or Executive’s legal representatives under this Agreement, other than for payment of Accrued Obligations and the timely payment or provision of Other Benefits. Accrued Obligations shall be paid to Executive or Executive’s estate or beneficiary, as applicable, in a lump sum in cash within 30 days of the Date of Termination. With respect to the provision of Other Benefits, the term Other Benefits as used in this Section 6(b) shall include without

 

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limitation, and Executive or Executive’s estate and/or beneficiaries shall be entitled to receive, benefits under such plans, programs, practices and policies relating to death or disability benefits, if any, as are applicable to Executive on the Date of Termination.

(c) Cause; Other than for Good Reason. If Executive’s employment shall be terminated for Cause during the Employment Period, this Agreement shall terminate without further obligations to Executive other than the obligation to pay to Executive (i) his Annual Base Salary through the Date of Termination and any accrued vacation pay to the extent then unpaid, and (ii) any Other Benefits, in each case to the extent then unpaid. If Executive voluntarily terminates employment during the Employment Period, excluding a termination for Good Reason, this Agreement shall terminate without further obligations to Executive, other than for Accrued Obligations and the timely payment or provision of Other Benefits. In each such case, all Accrued Obligations shall be paid to Executive in a lump sum in cash within 30 days of the Date of Termination.

(d) Expiration of Employment Period. If Executive’s employment shall be terminated due to the normal expiration of the Employment Period, this Agreement shall terminate without further obligations to Executive, other than for payment of Accrued Obligations and the timely payment or provision of Other Benefits. In such case, all Accrued Obligations shall be paid to Executive in a lump sum in cash within 30 days of the Date of Termination. If Executive’s employment is not terminated upon the normal expiration of the Employment Period, he shall continue as an at-will employee of the Company and this Agreement shall be of no further force or effect.

7. Non-exclusivity of Rights. Nothing in this Agreement shall prevent or limit Executive’s continuing or future participation in any plan, program, policy or practice provided by the Company or any of its affiliated companies and for which Executive may qualify, nor, subject to Section 14(j), shall anything herein limit or otherwise affect such rights as Executive may have under any contract or agreement with the Company or any of its affiliated companies. Amounts which are vested benefits or which Executive is otherwise entitled to receive under any plan, policy, practice or program of or any contract or agreement with the Company or any of its affiliated companies at or subsequent to the Date of Termination shall be payable in accordance with such plan, policy, practice or program or contract or agreement except as explicitly modified by this Agreement.

8. Full Settlement; No Mitigation. The Company’s obligation to make the payments provided for in this Agreement and otherwise to perform its obligations hereunder shall not be affected by any set-off, counterclaim, recoupment, defense or other claim, right or action which the Company may have against Executive or others. In no event shall Executive be obligated to seek other employment or take any other action by way of mitigation of the amounts payable to Executive under any of the provisions of this Agreement and such amounts shall not be reduced whether or not Executive obtains other employment.

 

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9. Costs of Enforcement.

(a) The Company shall reimburse Executive, on a current basis, for all reasonable legal fees and related expenses incurred by Executive in contesting or disputing any termination of Executive’s employment after the Effective Date, or Executive’s seeking to obtain or enforce any right or benefit provided by this Agreement, in each case, regardless of whether or not Executive’s claim is upheld by an arbitral panel or a court of competent jurisdiction; provided, however, Executive shall be required to repay to the Company any such amounts to the extent that an arbitral panel or a court issues a final and non-appealable order, judgment, decree or award setting forth the determination that the position taken by Executive was frivolous or advanced by Executive in bad faith. All such payments shall be made within five (5) business days after delivery of Executive’s respective written requests for payment accompanied with such evidence of fees and expenses incurred as the Company reasonably may require, but in any event no later than December 31 of the year following the calendar year in which the expense was incurred.

(b) In addition, Executive shall be entitled to be paid all reasonable legal fees and expenses, if any, incurred in connection with any tax audit or proceeding to the extent attributable to the application of Section 4999 of the Code to any payment or benefit hereunder. Such reimbursement of expenses shall be made on a current basis, as incurred, and in no event later than December 31 of the year following the calendar year in which the taxes that are the subject of the audit or proceeding are remitted to the taxing authority, or where as a result of such audit or proceeding no taxes are remitted, December 31 of the year following the calendar year in which the audit is completed or there is a final and nonappealable settlement or other resolution of the proceeding.

(c) The amount reimbursable by the Company under this Section 9 in any one calendar year shall not affect the amount reimbursable in any other calendar year. Executive’s rights pursuant to this Section 9 shall expire at the end of five years after the date of termination and shall not be subject to liquidation or exchange for another benefit.

10. Mandatory Reduction of Payments in Certain Events.

(a) Anything in this Agreement to the contrary notwithstanding, in the event it shall be determined that any payment or distribution by the Company to or for the benefit of Executive (whether paid or payable or distributed or distributable pursuant to the terms of this Agreement or otherwise) (a “Payment”) would be subject to the excise tax imposed by Section 4999 of the Code (the “Excise Tax”), then, prior to the making of any Payment to Executive, a calculation shall be made comparing (i) the net benefit to Executive of the Payment after payment of the Excise Tax, to (ii) the net benefit to

 

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Executive if the Payment had been limited to the extent necessary to avoid being subject to the Excise Tax. If the amount calculated under (i) above is less than the amount calculated under (ii) above, then the Payment shall be limited to the extent necessary to avoid being subject to the Excise Tax (the “Reduced Amount”). The reduction of the Payments due hereunder, if applicable, shall be made by first reducing cash Payments and then, to the extent necessary, reducing those Payments having the next highest ratio of Parachute Value to actual present value of such Payments as of the date of the Change in Control, as determined by the Determination Firm (as defined in Section 10(b) below). For purposes of this Section 10, present value shall be determined in accordance with Section 280G(d)(4) of the Code. For purposes of this Section 10, the “Parachute Value” of a Payment means the present value as of the date of the Change in Control of the portion of such Payment that constitutes a “parachute payment” under Section 280G(b)(2) of the Code, as determined by the Determination Firm for purposes of determining whether and to what extent the Excise Tax will apply to such Payment.

(b) The determination of whether an Excise Tax would be imposed, the amount of such Excise Tax, and the calculation of the amounts referred to Section 10(a)(i) and (ii) above shall be made by an independent, nationally recognized accounting firm or compensation consulting firm mutually acceptable to the Company and Executive (the “Determination Firm”) which shall provide detailed supporting calculations. Any determination by the Determination Firm shall be binding upon the Company and Executive. As a result of the uncertainty in the application of Section 4999 of the Code at the time of the initial determination by the Determination Firm hereunder, it is possible that Payments which Executive was entitled to, but did not receive pursuant to Section 10(a), could have been made without the imposition of the Excise Tax (“Underpayment”). In such event, the Determination Firm shall determine the amount of the Underpayment that has occurred and any such Underpayment shall be promptly paid by the Company to or for the benefit of Executive but no later than March 15 of the year after the year in which the Underpayment is determined to exist, which is when the legally binding right to such Underpayment arises.

(c) In the event that the provisions of Code Section 280G and 4999 or any successor provisions are repealed without succession, this Section 10 shall be of no further force or effect.

11. Confidential Information. Executive shall hold in a fiduciary capacity for the benefit of the Company all secret or confidential information, knowledge or data relating to the Company or any of its affiliated companies, and their respective businesses, which shall have been obtained by Executive during Executive’s employment by the Company or any of its affiliated companies. After termination of Executive’s employment with the Company, Executive shall not, without the prior written consent of the Company or as may otherwise be required by law or legal process, communicate or

 

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divulge any such information, knowledge or data to anyone other than the Company and those designated by it. It is understood, however, that the obligations of this Section 11 shall not apply to the extent that the aforesaid matters (i) are disclosed in circumstances where Executive is legally required to do so or (ii) become generally known to and available for use by the public other than by acts by Executive or representatives of Executive in violation of this Agreement.

12. Arbitration. Any dispute or controversy arising under or in connection with this Agreement shall be settled exclusively by arbitration in the State of Georgia by three arbitrators in accordance with the rules of the Employment Dispute Rules of the American Arbitration Association and the Federal Arbitration Act, 9 U.S.C. §1, et. seq. Judgment may be entered on the arbitrators’ award in any court having jurisdiction. Except as provided in Section 9, the Company shall bear all costs and expenses arising in connection with any arbitration proceeding pursuant to this Section 12.

13. Successors.

(a) This Agreement is personal to Executive and without the prior written consent of the Company shall not be assignable by Executive otherwise than by will or the laws of descent and distribution. This Agreement shall inure to the benefit of and be enforceable by Executive’s legal representatives.

(b) This Agreement shall inure to the benefit of and be binding upon the Company and its successors and assigns.

(c) The Company will require any successor (whether direct or indirect, by purchase, merger, consolidation or otherwise) to all or substantially all of the business and/or assets of the Company to assume expressly and agree to perform this Agreement in the same manner and to the same extent that the Company would be required to perform it if no such succession had taken place. As used in this Agreement, “Company” shall mean the Company as hereinbefore defined and any successor to its business and/or assets as aforesaid which assumes and agrees to perform this Agreement by operation of law, or otherwise.

14. Miscellaneous.

(a) Governing Law. This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Georgia, without reference to principles of conflict of laws.

(b) Captions. The captions of this Agreement are not part of the provisions hereof and shall have no force or effect.

 

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(c) Amendments. This Agreement may not be amended or modified otherwise than-by a written agreement executed by the parties hereto or their respective successors and legal representatives.

(d) Notices. All notices and other communications hereunder shall be in writing and shall be given by hand delivery to the other party or by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, postage prepaid, addressed as follows:

 

If to Executive:

the address set forth below

under Executive’s signature

If to the Company:

Genuine Parts Company

2999 Circle 75 Parkway

Atlanta, Georgia 30339

Attention: Chairman of the Board

Copy to: Corporate Secretary

or to such other address as either party shall have furnished to the other in writing in accordance herewith. Notice and communications shall be effective when actually received by the addressee.

(e) Severability. The invalidity or unenforceability of any provision of this Agreement shall not affect the validity or enforceability of any other provision of this Agreement, and the Agreement shall be construed in all respects as if the invalid or unenforceable provision were omitted.

(f) Withholding. The Company may withhold from any amounts payable under this Agreement such federal, state, local or foreign taxes as shall be required to be withheld pursuant to any applicable law or regulation.

(g) Waivers. Executive’s or the Company’s failure to insist upon strict compliance with any provision of this Agreement or the failure to assert any right Executive or the Company may have hereunder, shall not be deemed to be a waiver of such provision or right or any other provision or right of this Agreement.

(h) Status Before and After Effective Date. Executive and the Company acknowledge that, except as may otherwise be provided under any other written agreement between Executive and the Company, the employment of Executive by the Company is “at will” and, subject to Section 1(a) hereof, Executive’s employment and/or this Agreement may be terminated by either Executive or the Company at any time prior to the Effective Date, in which case Executive shall have no further rights under this Agreement. From and after the Effective Date this Agreement shall supersede any other agreement between the parties with respect to the subject matter hereof.

 

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(i) Indemnification. Executive shall be entitled to the benefits of the indemnity provided by the Company’s certificate of incorporation, bylaws, or otherwise immediately prior to Effective Date, or any greater rights to indemnification thereafter provided to executive officers of the Company, and any subsequent changes to the certificate of incorporation, bylaws, or otherwise reducing the indemnity granted to such Executive shall not affect the rights granted hereunder. The Company may not reduce these indemnity benefits confirmed to Executive hereunder without the written consent of Executive.

(j) Related Agreements. To the extent that any provision of any other agreement between the Company and Executive shall limit, qualify or be inconsistent with any provision of this Agreement, then for purposes of this Agreement, while the same shall remain in force, the provisions of this Agreement shall control and such provision of such other agreement shall be deemed to have been superseded, and to be of no force and effect, as if such other agreement had been formally amended to the extent necessary to accomplish such purpose.

(k) Counterparts. This Agreement may be executed in several counterparts, each of which shall be deemed to be an original but all of which together will constitute one and the same instrument.

15. Code Section 409A.

(a) General. This Agreement shall be interpreted and administered in a manner so that any amount or benefit payable hereunder shall be paid or provided in a manner that is either exempt from or compliant with the requirements Section 409A of the Code and applicable Internal Revenue Service guidance and Treasury Regulations issued thereunder (and any applicable transition relief under Section 409A of the Code). Nevertheless, the tax treatment of the benefits provided under the Agreement is not warranted or guaranteed. Neither the Company nor its directors, officers, employees or advisers shall be held liable for any taxes, interest, penalties or other monetary amounts owed by Executive as a result of the application of Section 409A of the Code.

(b) Definitional Restrictions. Notwithstanding anything in this Agreement to the contrary, to the extent that any amount or benefit that would constitute non-exempt “deferred compensation” for purposes of Section 409A of the Code (“Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation”) would otherwise be payable or distributable hereunder, or a different form of payment of such Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation would be effected, by reason of a Change in Control or Executive’s Disability or termination of employment, such Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation will not be payable or distributable to Executive, and/or such different form of payment will not be effected, by reason of such circumstance unless the circumstances giving rise to such Change in Control, Disability or termination of employment, as the case may be, meet any description or definition of “change in control event”, “disability” or “separation from

 

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service”, as the case may be, in Section 409A of the Code and applicable regulations (without giving effect to any elective provisions that may be available under such definition). This provision does not prohibit the vesting of any Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation upon a Change in Control, Disability or termination of employment, however defined. If this provision prevents the payment or distribution of any Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation, such payment or distribution shall be made on the date, if any, on which an event occurs that constitutes a Section 409A-compliant “change in control event”, “disability” or “separation from service,” as the case may be, or such later date as may be required by subsection (c) below. If this provision prevents the application of a different form of payment of any amount or benefit, such payment shall be made in the same form as would have applied absent such designated event or circumstance.

(c) Six-Month Delay in Certain Circumstances. Notwithstanding anything in this Agreement to the contrary, if any amount or benefit that would constitute Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation would otherwise be payable or distributable under this Agreement by reason of Executive’s separation from service during a period in which he is a Specified Employee (as defined below), then, subject to any permissible acceleration of payment by the Company under Treas. Reg. Section 1.409A-3(j)(4)(ii) (domestic relations order), (j)(4)(iii) (conflicts of interest), or (j)(4)(vi) (payment of employment taxes):

(i) the amount of such Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation that would otherwise be payable during the six-month period immediately following Executive’s separation from service will be accumulated through and paid or provided on the first day of the seventh month following Executive’s separation from service (or, if Executive dies during such period, within 30 days after Executive’s death) (in either case, the “Required Delay Period”); and

(ii) the normal payment or distribution schedule for any remaining payments or distributions will resume at the end of the Required Delay Period.

For purposes of this Agreement, the term “Specified Employee” has the meaning given such term in Code Section 409A and the final regulations thereunder; provided, however, that the Company’s Specified Employees and its application of the six-month delay rule of Code Section 409A(a)(2)(B)(i) shall be determined in accordance with rules adopted by the Board or a committee thereof, which shall be applied consistently with respect to all nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements of the Company, including this Agreement.

(d) Treatment of Installment Payments. Each payment of termination benefits under Section 6 of this Agreement, including, without limitation, each installment payment and each payment or reimbursement of premiums for continued medical, dental or life insurance coverage under Section 6(a)(ii), shall be considered a separate payment, as described in Treas. Reg. Section 1.409A-2(b)(2), for purposes of Section 409A of the Code.

 

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(e) Timing of Release of Claims. Whenever in this Agreement a payment or benefit is conditioned on Executive’s execution of a release of claims, such release must be executed and all revocation periods shall have expired within 60 days after the Date of Termination; failing which such payment or benefit shall be forfeited. If such payment or benefit constitutes Non-Exempt Deferred Compensation, then, subject to subsection (c) above, such payment or benefit (including any installment payments) that would have otherwise been payable during such 60-day period shall be accumulated and paid on the 60th day after the Date of Termination provided such release shall have been executed and such revocation periods shall have expired. If such payment or benefit is exempt from Section 409A of the Code, the Company may elect to make or commence payment at any time during such 60-day period.

(f) Timing of Reimbursements and In-kind Benefits. If Executive is entitled to be paid or reimbursed for any taxable expenses under Sections 4(b)(v), 6(a)(ii) or 6(a)(iv), and such payments or reimbursements are includible in Executive’s federal gross taxable income, the amount of such expenses reimbursable in any one calendar year shall not affect the amount reimbursable in any other calendar year, and the reimbursement of an eligible expense must be made no later than December 31 of the year after the year in which the expense was incurred. No right of Executive to reimbursement of expenses under Sections 4(b)(v), 6(a)(ii) or 6(a)(iv) shall be subject to liquidation or exchange for another benefit.

(g) Permitted Acceleration. The Company shall have the sole authority to make any accelerated distribution permissible under Treas. Reg. section 1.409A-3(j)(4) to Executive of deferred amounts, provided that such distribution(s) meets the requirements of Treas. Reg. section 1.409A-3(j)(4).

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, Executive has hereunto set Executive’s hand and, pursuant to the authorization from its Board of Directors, the Company has caused these presents to be executed in its name on its behalf, all as of the day and year first above written.

 

 

[Executive]

Address:

 

 

 

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GENUINE PARTS COMPANY

By:

 

 

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EXHIBIT A

Form of Release

This Release is granted effective as of the         day of                 , 20        , by                 (“Executive”) in favor of Genuine Parts Company (the “Company”). This is the Release referred to that certain Employment Agreement effective as of                 , 20    by and between the Company and Executive (the “Employment Agreement”). Executive gives this Release in consideration of the Company’s promises and covenants as recited in the Employment Agreement, with respect to which this Release is an integral part.

1. Release of the Company. Executive, for himself, his successors, assigns, attorneys, and all those entitled to assert his rights, now and forever hereby releases and discharges the Company and its respective officers, directors, stockholders, trustees, employees, agents, parent corporations, subsidiaries, affiliates, estates, successors, assigns and attorneys (“the Released Parties”), from any and all claims, actions, causes of action, sums of money due, suits, debts, liens, covenants, contracts, obligations, costs, expenses, damages, judgments, agreements, promises, demands, claims for attorney’s fees and costs, or liabilities whatsoever, in law or in equity, which Executive ever had or now has against the Released Parties, including, without limitation, any claims arising by reason of or in any way connected with any employment relationship which existed between the Company or any of its parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, or predecessors, and Executive. It is understood and agreed that this Release is intended to cover all actions, causes of action, claims or demands for any damage, loss or injury, whether known or unknown, of any nature whatsoever, including those which may be traced either directly or indirectly to the aforesaid employment relationship, or the termination of that relationship, that Executive has, had or purports to have, from the beginning of time to the date of this Release, and including but not limited to claims for employment discrimination under federal or state law, except as provided in Paragraph 2; claims arising under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. § 621, et seq., Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. § 2000(e), et seq. or the Americans With Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq.; claims for statutory or common law wrongful discharge, claims arising under the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. § 201 et seq.; claims for attorney’s fees, expenses and costs; claims for defamation; claims for emotional distress; claims for wages or vacation pay; claims for benefits, including any claims arising under the Executive Retirement Income Security Act, 29 U.S.C. § 1001, et seq.; and claims under any other applicable federal, state or local laws or legal concepts; provided, however, that nothing herein shall release the Company of any indemnification obligations to Executive under the Company’s bylaws, certificate of incorporation, Delaware law or otherwise.

2. Release of Claims Under Age Discrimination in Employment Act. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, Executive agrees that by executing this Release, he has released and waived any and all claims he has or may have as of the date of this Release for age discrimination under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. § 621, et seq. Executive acknowledges and agrees that he has been, and hereby


is, advised by the Company to consult with an attorney prior to executing this Release. Executive further acknowledges and agrees that the Company has offered Executive the opportunity, before executing this Release, to consider this Release for a period of twenty-one (21) calendar days; and that the consideration he receives for this Release is in addition to amounts to which he was already entitled. It is further understood that this Release is not effective until seven (7) calendar days after the execution of this Release and that Executive may revoke this Release within seven (7) calendar days from the date of execution hereof.

3. Non-Admission. It is understood and agreed by Executive that the payment made to him is not to be construed as an admission of any liability whatsoever on the part of the Company or any of the other Releasees, by whom liability is expressly denied.

4. Acknowledgement and Revocation Period. Executive agrees that he has carefully read this Release and is signing it voluntarily. Executive acknowledges that he has had twenty one (21) days from receipt of this Release to review it prior to signing or that, if Executive is signing this Release prior to the expiration of such 21-day period, Executive is waiving his right to review the Release for such full 21-day period prior to signing it. Executive has the right to revoke this release within seven (7) days following the date of its execution by him. In order to revoke this Release, Executive must deliver notice of the revocation in writing to Company’s General Counsel before the expiration of the seven (7) day period. However, if Executive revokes this Release within such seven (7) day period, no severance benefit will be payable to him under the Employment Agreement and he shall return to the Company any such payment received prior to that date.

5. No Revocation After Seven Days. Executive acknowledges and agrees that this Release may not be revoked at any time after the expiration of the seven (7) day revocation period and that he/she will not institute any suit, action, or proceeding, whether at law or equity, challenging the enforceability of this Release. Executive further acknowledges and agrees that, with the exception of an action to challenge the waiver of claims under the ADEA, Executive shall not ever attempt to challenge the terms of this Release, attempt to obtain an order declaring this Release to be null and void, or institute litigation against the Company or any other Releasee based upon a claim that is covered by the terms of the release contained herein, without first repaying all monies paid to him/her under Section 8 of the Employment Agreement. Furthermore, with the exception of an action to challenge his waiver of claims under the ADEA, if Executive does not prevail in an action to challenge this Release, to obtain an order declaring this Release to be null and void, or in any action against the Company or any other Releasee based upon a claim that is covered by the release set forth herein, Executive shall pay to the Company and/or the appropriate Releasee all their costs and attorneys’ fees incurred in their defense of Executive’s action.

 

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6. Governing Law and Severability. This Release and the rights and obligations of the parties hereto shall be governed and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Georgia. If any provision hereof is unenforceable or is held to be unenforceable, such provision shall be fully severable, and this document and its terms shall be construed and enforced as if such unenforceable provision had never comprised a part hereof, the remaining provisions hereof shall remain in full force and effect, and the court or tribunal construing the provisions shall add as a part hereof a provision as similar in terms and effect to such unenforceable provision as may be enforceable, in lieu of the unenforceable provision.

EXECUTIVE HAS CAREFULLY READ THIS RELEASE AND ACKNOWLEDGES THAT IT CONSTITUTES A GENERAL RELEASE OF ALL KNOWN AND UNKNOWN CLAIMS AGAINST THE COMPANY UNDER THE AGE DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT ACT. EXECUTIVE ACKNOWLEDGES THAT HE HAS HAD A FULL OPPORTUNITY TO CONSULT WITH AN ATTORNEY OR OTHER ADVISOR OF HIS CHOOSING CONCERNING HIS EXECUTION OF THIS RELEASE AND THAT HE IS SIGNING THIS RELEASE VOLUNTARILY AND WITH THE FULL INTENT OF RELEASING THE COMPANY FROM ALL SUCH CLAIMS.

 

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