Daniel Cotter

A member in the firm’s Chicago office, Daniel Cotter’s practice encompasses a range of roles, including a pivotal tenure as general counsel for a major life insurance company and extensive private practice experience. His clientele spans insurance firms, financial institutions, IT/consulting enterprises, and nonprofits.

Since 1996, Dan has been deeply involved in privacy and cybersecurity matters, notably contributing to the formulation of terms and conditions as well as disclaimers for Fortune 500 websites in the late 1990s. His roles as a chief privacy officer across various companies and law firms underscore his depth in these evolving domains.

Dan’s proficiency extends to navigating intricate insurance regulatory matters, overseeing substantial reorganizations within holding company systems, and negotiating a myriad of contracts, ranging from simple to elaborate, including outsourcing agreements. His portfolio includes pivotal assignments such as advising a state insurance department on pioneering insurance company demutualizations and spearheading approvals for significant transactions. He also played a crucial role in facilitating the purchase and redomestication of insurers across multiple jurisdictions.

In addition, Dan provides invaluable counsel to nonprofit entities, guiding them through intricate dissolutions, mergers, and conversions. His breadth of experience and knack for navigating multifaceted legal landscapes make him a trusted advisor, ensuring clients receive strategic guidance and resolution on a broad spectrum of legal matters. 

Prominent Assignments

Advised Illinois Department of Insurance regarding first two insurance company demutualizations approved under the Illinois Insurance Code.
Advised standby purchaser on first life insurance demutualization in Illinois and obtained approval of transaction by Illinois Department of Insurance.
Represented buyer in purchase of a Massachusetts-domiciled insurer and redomestication to Nebraska.
Obtained certificates of authority for client to expand to more than forty jurisdictions.
Advised nonprofit entities on complex dissolutions, mergers, and conversions.

Professional Involvement

  • National Conference of Bar Presidents
    • Secretary, 2021
    • Treasurer, 2022
    • President-Elect, 2023
  • Monmouth College,
    • Moot Court Judge, 2011-2020
  • The American Law Institute
  • LexisNexis
    • Insurance Advisory Board for Practical Guidance, Board Member, 2021
  • Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals
    • General Counsel, 2020
  • American Bar Association
    • Cybersecurity Legal Task Force
    • House of Delegates, 2015-present
    • National Conference of Bar PresidentsMetropolitan Bar Caucus Committee, Chair, 2012-present
    • Board Member, 2015-2018
  • Chicago Bar Association
    • Media and Civic Education, Inc., Board Member, 2021
    • Insurance Law Committee, Co-Chair, 2019-present
    • President, 2014-2015
    • Board of Managers, 2003-2004; 2005-2007; 2010-2016
    • Young Lawyers Section, Chair, 2003-2004

Community Involvement

  • Judge, UIC College of Law Moot Court Honors program, 2024

Court Admissions

  • Supreme Court of the United States, 2011
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1996


Dan has presented hundreds of times throughout his career on a variety of substantive topics. Recent presentations include:

  • Speaker, “The Evolution of Arbitration - Improving Efficiency and Controlling Costs,” The Ultimate ADR Seminar: A Conversation with ADR Experts, Chicago Bar Association, September 2024

  • Speaker, “BIPA, GIPA & Other Privacy and Cyber Claims,” Hybrid Learn-A-Latte, American Arbitration Association, July 2024

  • Featured, The Gary Clement Radio Show Podcast, June 2024

  • Author, "Cotter's Corner," Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, Illinois Press Association, June 2024

  • Author, "Illinois Legislature passes major reform to BIPA," FORC Alert, May 2024

  • Presenter, "Information Governance in a World of Data Privacy and Legal Operations in the Age Of AI and Data," Chicago Bar Association, Recent Developments in Privacy Laws Seminar, June 2024

  • Co-Presenter, “The American Privacy Rights Act,” Cyber Law and Data Privacy Committee, The Chicago Bar Association, May 2024

  • Moderator, Inaugural Information and Privacy Law Program, Center for Intellectual Property, Information and Privacy Law, University of Illinois Chicago School of Law, May 2024

  • Presenter, “What's Next in Cybersecurity: The Changing Environment for Property/Casualty Insurers,” Compliance Webinar Series, National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC), May 2024

  • Author, "Justices sound skeptical of claim over mifepristone, FDA actions," Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, April 2024

  • Author, "IPAS Brewing in Illinois," Federation of Regulatory Counsel, April 2024

  • Featured, "History of the Biometric Information Privacy Act,” Dickinson Wright Minutes on the Matter, April 2024

  • Featured, "Significant Lawsuits Under the Biometric Information Privacy Act,” Dickinson Wright Minutes on the Matter, April 2024

  • Featured, "Insurance Issues Related to the Biometric Information Privacy Act,” Dickinson Wright Minutes on the Matter, April 2024

  • Moderator, “DOI Engagement Panel,” AICP Filing School, April 2024

  • Panelist, "Disputes Involving Exclusions in Cyber and Related Coverages, and the Market Response", ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section, March 2024

  • Contributor, "What Can Businesses Do About Ransomware Attacks?," Illinois/Chicago Business 2024, Super Lawyers, January 2024

  • Author, "A gigabyte of work – information governance in a world of data," Legal Operations in the Age of AI and Data, March 2024

  • Moderator, "BIPA Coverage, Artificial Intelligence & GIPA Class Actions," The Chicago Bar Association, February 2024

  • myLawCLE: “What Lawyers Need to Know About Financial Statements: Understanding how financial statements interact with business and legal issues,” November 3, webinar.
  • JVP Insurance Forum: “Embedded Insurance” and “Cyber Insurance,” November 2, speaker and moderator.
  • Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals: “Property & Casualty Q&A,” October 30, 2023, moderator and participant.
  • Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section - What Attorneys Need to Know about Ransomware Attacks, May 19, 2023, webinar.
  • American Arbitration Association - Learn-a-Latte, May 9, 2023, co-host.
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