Kimberly M. Copp

Industry Chair, Partner Chicago
Contact Info

Summary

Kim’s professional focus centers on general corporate, finance, and gaming law. She holds the position of co-chair in Taft’s Gaming Industry Group. Her expertise lies in advising clients on a wide range of corporate and transactional matters, such as acquisitions, dispositions, strategic collaborations, and equity transactions.

Additionally, Kim acts as legal counsel to both lenders and borrowers in middle-market financing transactions, encompassing acquisition financings, asset-based lending, and project financings.

Within the gaming industry, Kim represents various stakeholders, including casino operators, sports wagering entities, iGaming operators, and HHR operators, as well as suppliers and manufacturers. She handles corporate, financial, and regulatory issues in this sector. Moreover, Kim advises lenders and investors on gaming interests regarding financing structures, licensing, and regulatory affairs.   Additionally, she possesses extensive experience representing municipalities, states, and regulatory entities in gaming-related affairs such as drafting legislation, facilitating negotiations for host community agreements between local government bodies and developers, and overseeing competitive selection processes for gaming ventures.

Kim holds a B.B.S. in Finance from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She obtained a J.D., magna cum laude, from The John Marshall Law School in Chicago (now the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law). Recognized for her academic excellence, Kim was honored with the Graduate School Scholarship Award for achieving the highest overall class rank in her law school studies.

Awards

  • Honoree, “Notable Women in Law” by Crain’s Chicago Business (2024).

  • Honoree, Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Gaming & Licensing (2018 – present).

  • Honoree, Leading Lawyers (2014 – present).

  • Honoree, Illinois Super Lawyers, Securities & Corporate Finance (2021 – present).

  • Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers Honoree, Crain’s Chicago Business (2018).

  • Honoree, Best Lawyers in America, Banking and Finance Law, Gaming Law, Public Finance Law (2021 – present).

  • Thomson Reuters Stand-Out Lawyer – independently rated lawyers (2022).

Additional Information

All Service Areas

All Industries

Education

  • University of Illinois Chicago School of Law (1997)
  • Miami University-Oxford, B.B.S., Finance (1993)

Admissions

  • State - Illinois

Notable Matters

  • Selected by the New York State Gaming Facility Location Board to assist in conducting its competitive bidding process for the issuance of up to four gaming licenses in Upstate New York.
  • Appointed by Ohio Attorney General as Special Counsel to provide legal services for casino legislation implementation matters for the state’s Office of Budget and Management.
  • Financing of casinos and/or racinos in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, as well as Alberta and British Columbia, Canada.
  • Counsel to two large publicly-held casino companies and their respective acquisitions of casino gaming assets.
  • Representation of clients before gaming regulators throughout North America.
  • Appointed by Michigan Attorney General as Special Counsel to provide legal services with respect to a proposed takeover bid of a Detroit-based casino.
  • Represented the city of Detroit in connection with $2 billion development of three land-based casino projects.
  • Counsel to the city of Detroit in connection with the bankruptcy and restructuring of a Detroit-based casino.
  • Advised the city of Springfield, Massachusetts, in connection with its competitive selection process for a casino developer of an $800 million casino project and represented the city in connection with assessing impacts of the development, and negotiating a host community agreement between the city and the casino developer.
  • Represented the city of Taunton, Massachusetts, in negotiating an Intergovernmental Agreement between the city and a Native American tribe for the development of a $500 million casino development.
  • Represented the town of Milford, Massachusetts, in assessing the impacts of a proposed casino development, and negotiating a host community agreement between the town and the casino proponent.
  • Counsel to Prince George’s County, Maryland, with respect to a proposed casino development to be located within the county.
  • Represented a private equity fund in connection with its investment in several casinos located in Alberta and British Columbia, Canada.
  • Represented several multi-jurisdictional casino operators in the acquisition and disposition of certain casino assets.
  • Counsel to the city of Chicago with respect to drafting legislation for a city-owned casino.
  • Advised clients in connection with responding to competitive bidding processes for casino licenses located in Illinois, and Pennsylvania.
  • Advised state legislators in Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Ohio regarding gaming legislation and related gaming regulations.

Speeches and Publications

Presenter, “Opening Remarks,” Maryland Educational Summit: Sports Wagering – Small Business Participation in the Spotlight, May 6, 2022.

Co-author, “2020 Gaming Bill Passed by the Illinois General Assembly,” Taft Law Bulletin, May 26, 2020.

Co-author, “Summary of Illinois Historic Gaming Expansion Bill – Updated,” Taft Law Bulletin, July 1, 2019.

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association

    Member

  • Chicago Bar Association

    Member

  • Leading Lawyers Network

    Member