Bar Admissions
  • Nevada, 1972
Court Admissions
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court, District of Nevada
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • J.D., University of Southern California, 1972
  • B.S., Finance, Cum Laude, University of Southern California, 1968
Bar Admissions
  • Nevada, 1972
Court Admissions
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court, District of Nevada
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • J.D., University of Southern California, 1972
  • B.S., Finance, Cum Laude, University of Southern California, 1968

Professional Background

One of Nevada’s most experienced gaming law practitioners, Mr. Hicks’ primary areas of practice are gaming law and related corporate, litigation, and transactional matters. His clients include many well-known Nevada resort gaming operators and gaming equipment suppliers and Nevada’s largest Native American gaming operation. He has represented publicly traded gaming companies and their controlling persons, as well as many privately owned gaming establishments and their owners on gaming matters in the State of Nevada and other jurisdictions.

Mr. Hicks has also consulted on gaming matters for major investment banking firms and commercial lenders. He frequently serves as a Nevada counsel on large transactional matters and related financings to companies involved in the gaming industry. Although based in Reno, Mr. Hicks also works out of McDonald Carano’s Las Vegas office, and many of his clients and their matters are located in that area.

Mr. Hicks has served as an expert witness on gaming law matters, published numerous articles on gaming issues, and testified before the U.S. Congress and the Nevada State Legislature on gaming matters. He served as Chief Deputy Attorney General for the State of Nevada and the Nevada Gaming Commission in a landmark case that rid Las Vegas’ gaming industry of the last vestiges of organized crime. As a result of his extensive regulatory experience, he often assists his clients on compliance matters and other sensitive licensing and regulatory issues.

Gaming & Administrative Law

Mr. Hicks has more than 40 years of experience dealing with gaming matters, including counseling and representing people and entities proposing to enter the gaming industry; lenders dealing with gaming operators, including lenders involved in financial restructurings of gaming companies; private and public companies involved in the gaming industry; and high net worth individuals involved in the gaming industry throughout America. He represents such clients in all gaming matters, including licensing, compliance, and operational matters subject to gaming regulation. Mr. Hicks also works with manufacturers and distributors of gaming devices and gaming systems and with Native American gaming operations. He is often called on to assist lenders and other interested parties in creditor proceedings involving licensed gaming companies.

Business Entities & Transactions

Not limiting himself to companies in the gaming industry, Mr. Hicks is also experienced in the formation, operation, and financing of business entities of all types. He works with numerous Nevada corporations and their out-of-state counsel on local matters, including questions of corporate law and litigation matters. As a result of his extensive experience in the gaming industry and his experience as a chief deputy attorney general for the state, Mr. Hicks represents various parties and companies involved in corporate and business disputes in the various state and federal courts in Nevada.


Awards and Recognition

  • Chambers USA, Band 1; Chambers USA 2017, Band 1 Gaming & Licensing
  • Martindale-Hubbell® AV PreeminentTM Rating since 1984
  • The Best Lawyers in America©, Gaming Law, 2003 – 2016
  • Super Lawyers, Gaming Law
  • Nevada Business Magazine “Legal Elite”, 2012
  • Member, Counselors of IAGA, 1986 – present
  • Founding Trustee and Past President, International Association of Gaming Advisors
  • Founding Chairman, Nevada Bar Association Gaming Law Section
  • Past President, Gaming Law Section of American Bar Association

Community Involvement

  • Member, California-Nevada Tahoe Basin Fire Commission (2007-2009)
  • Member, Nevada Tahoe Basin Fire Oversight Commission (2009-2010)
  • Honorary Firefighter, Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District 2008
  • Board Member & President, Glenbrook Homeowners Association (Lake Tahoe)  (1999-2014)
  • Member, Advisory Board, UNLV Gaming Law Journal, William S. Boyd  School of Law
  • Member, Nevada Sesquicentennial Commission (2011-2014)
  • Chairman, Nevada 150 Foundation, 2012 to present
  • Published author of fictionalized works inspired by real gaming events and characters, including Fortune’s Trail – A Nevada Story and The Count Room

Recent Representative Matters

  • Represented a family owned company in the purchase and licensure of a Las Vegas Strip hotel casino.
  • Represented Boyd Gaming Corporation in the acquisition of three Las Vegas hotel casino properties and in obtaining related gaming licenses and approvals.
  • Assisted Eldorado Resorts, Inc., in going public, the acquisition of gaming properties in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and northern Nevada, and in obtaining related gaming licenses and approvals.
  • Represented two multi-regional publicly traded gaming companies on major financings and related pledges of gaming properties.
  • Represented several non-gaming publicly traded companies on matters of Nevada law relating to securities offerings.
  • Assisted a consortium of lenders in the successful imposition of a court-appointed Receiver over and subsequent foreclosure upon a major Las Vegas gaming resort and handled related gaming and business licenses and approvals.
  • Represents Nevada’s largest Native-American owned casino.
  • Serves on the Gaming Regulatory Compliance Committees of (1) a multi-regional publicly traded gaming company, (2) a publicly traded company that operates truck and automobile service centers throughout North America including some with gaming operations, and (3) a private equity fund holding significant gaming interests.

Attorney News

Nevada Nonprofit Gives $700K for Battle Born Makeover

An exhibit at the State Capitol is getting a $700,000 makeover. The Nevada 150 Foundation presented Gov. Brian Sandoval on Thursday with $700,000 that will go toward new exhibits and…

McDonald Carano Highlighted in Chambers USA as a Top Nevada Law Firm

Las Vegas, NV – Chambers USA, one of the leading legal ratings agencies in the United States, has released its 2017 rankings. McDonald Carano once again received high honors, maintaining…

“Scuffle Between Nevada Casino Company and Union Pulls in Deutsche Bank”

New York Times By LIZ MOYER The long-running fight between culinary workers and a casino owner in Las Vegas is about to go another round. And the workers are hoping…

You have chosen to send an email to McDonald Carano. The sending or receipt of this email and the information in it does not in itself create an attorney-client relationship. If you are not already a client, you should not provide us with information that you wish to have treated as privileged or confidential without first speaking to one of our lawyers. If you provide information before we confirm that you are a client and that we are willing and able to represent you, we may not be required to treat that information as privileged, confidential, or protected information, and we may be able to represent a party adverse to you.

I have read this and want to send an email.