MN gets green light to investigate UnitedHealth stock options

An appeals court ruling has given Minnesota's attorney general the ability to move ahead with its investigation of UnitedHealth Group's backdating of stock options. The ruling, by the Minnesota Court of Appeals, held that Attorney General Lori Swanson may proceed with its inquiry as long as it looks at whether such backdating violated consumer-protection laws.

The investigation dates back to the era when former CEO William McGuire was in charge. McGuire, who resigned in December 2006, left the company with options worth $1.78 billion at the time. An internal UHG investigation had showed that the options value was so high because McGuire retroactively picked the best dates to price them. Triggered by questions of impropriety, a judge froze McGuire's options. However, that freeze period ends December 6th--making this a pretty good time to find out more about them!

To find out more about the decision:
- read this Modern Healthcare article (reg. req.)

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