WWE Discloses Investigation Over Vince McMahon’s $14.6 Million Alleged Hush Money Payments

The company maintains that those expenses will be paid by the former CEO personally

Vince McMahon Sexual Misconduct Payments
Former WWE Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon. (Getty Images)

Following Vince McMahon’s retirement announcement last week, the WWE will revise financial statements dating back to 2019. According to the organization, almost $15 million of payments made by McMahon should’ve been recorded as expenses.

In an SEC filing this week, the company noted that it “has made a preliminary determination that certain payments that Vince McMahon agreed to make during the period from 2006 through 2022 (including amounts paid and payable in the future), and that were not recorded in the WWE consolidated financial statements, should have been recorded as expenses in the quarters in which those agreements were made.”

According to the WWE, the aggregate amount of the payments during this period totals $14.6 million, and all payments were or will be paid by McMahon personally.

The WWE is continuing to “evaluate the impact” that not disclosing those payments in the years they were made had on the company’s previous financial statements, but they insist that they currently don’t believe these payments would have made a “material” impact on any one financial statement.

“While the amount of Unrecorded Expenses was not material in any individual period in which the Unrecorded Expenses arose, the aggregate amount of Unrecorded Expenses would be material if recorded entirely in the second quarter of 2022,” the filing reads.

As such, the WWE will be revising its previously issued financial statements for applicable periods in 2019, 2020, 2021 and the first quarter of 2022 to reflect McMahon’s payments.

The statement also said that, given 16 years worth of these payments went largely unchecked, “the company expects to conclude that its internal control over financial reporting was not effective as a result of one or more material weaknesses.”

McMahon retired last week after he stepped down as WWE chief in June over a handful of sexual misconduct allegations. His hush money payments were previously reported by the Wall Street Journal, which said that at least $12 million in payments were made to four women over the last 16 years.

All four women were formerly associated with the WWE and signed nondisclosure agreements to prevent them from discussing their relationships with McMahon, according to the WSJ report. 

Earlier this summer, the WWE board began investigating McMahon after it came to light that he paid $3 million in hush money to keep an affair with a former employee quiet.