What is a long-term liability?

Definition of Long-term Liability
A long-term liability is an obligation resulting from a previous event that is not due within one year of the date of the balance sheet (or not due within the company's operating cycle if it is longer than one year). Long-term liabilities are also known as noncurrent liabilities.

Examples of Long-term Liabilities
Some examples of long-term liabilities are the noncurrent portions of the following:

  • bonds payable
  • long-term loans
  • pension liabilities
  • postretirement healthcare liabilities
  • deferred compensation
  • deferred revenues
  • deferred income taxes
  • customer deposits
Some long-term debt that will be due within one year of the balance sheet date can continue to be reported as a long-term liability if there is:

  • a long-term investment that is sufficient and restricted for the payment of the debt, or
  • intent and a noncancelable arrangement that assures that the long-term debt will be replaced with new long-term debt or with capital stock.

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