Settlement with Ex-UnitedHealth Group CEO Worth $600M

December 7, 2007 (PLANSPONSOR.COM) - Former UnitedHealth Group Chairman and CEO William W. McGuire has agreed to give back more than $600 million in stock options and benefits under a settlement reached with the Minneapolis company.

A United news release said the pact resulted from its internal investigation into wrongdoing in the company’s stock-options practices.

According to the company, McGuire will

  • surrender stock options to acquire 9,223,360 shares of company stock, which the company has valued at approximately $320 million;
  • surrender his interest in the company’s Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan, valued at approximately $91 million;
  • surrender to the company approximately $8 million in his Executive Savings Plan Account;
  • relinquish claims to other post-employment benefits under his Employment Agreement.

Under a previous agreement, stock options awarded to McGuire from 1994 to 2002 have been repriced.

The United news release also announced that it had worked out a settlement with former General Counsel David J. Lubben under which Lubben will:

  • surrender to UnitedHealth Group his stock options to acquire 273,000 shares of company stock, valued at more than $3 million;
  • repay to the company $20.5 million from his March 2007 exercise of stock options.

Combined with a previous repricing of stock options, the company said the agreement with Lubben is worth about $30 million.

In total, the company said its deals with former executives accused in the options pricing controversy are worth approximately $900 million.

McGuire left the health insurer after an internal probe concluded that option grants that brought him a huge fortune were likely manipulated (see  UnitedHealth Governance Actions Prompted by Backdating Scandal ). More information and documents filed in the case are  here .