Lawsuit Questions Bowman's Ties in United HealthCare Case

by Mark Friedman  on Monday, Mar. 23, 2009 12:00 am  

On Oct. 26, Bowman e-mailed her resume to Thompson, who then sent it to Anita Bachman, United's regional vice president for regulatory affairs.

Bowman "believes she has contacts among many state insurance commissioners and staff that would be beneficial to an insurer," Thompson wrote in the e-mail, which was attached as an exhibit in one of the filings.

Bowman denied anything was done improperly. She didn't have any communication with United about possible employment until after she ruled in the Arkansas Surgical case, Allan Gates, another of United's Mitchell Williams attorneys, said in one of his court filings in the case. 

Bowman also said she was in a no-win position in 2008.

"No matter how I ruled on anything, this hearing or anything else, during the last year, somebody would have said, 'She's ruling that way so can get a job,'" Bowman said. "There's no way I could win for losing."

She said she didn't get the United job until the week before Christmas.

On March 10, Perroni said in a motion that he received 52 pages of documents from United HealthCare. One of the documents showed that Bowman, while still commissioner, asked Nick Thompson for advice in interpreting state law concerning "post-government employment."

"Accordingly, not only did Bowman apparently have concerns as to whether she was acting ethically in soliciting employment with United, but also she turned to counsel for United for his thoughts in that regard."

Bowman said the wording in the statute was unclear and that's why she needed more information.

"I had my own lawyers doing research. I asked numerous people when I was starting to looking," Bowman said.

Perroni also made a reference to a document showing that the Mitchell Williams law firm reimbursed some of Bowman's travel expenses for meetings.

One document, obtained by Arkansas Business from the Arkansas Insurance Department, shows Mitchell Williams reimbursed the department $1,145 for a trip to New York for Bowman and Deputy Commissioner Dan Honey in August 2008. The reason for the trip listed was United HealthCare settlement.



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