Robert D. Burke

Rob Burke is a member and former chair of the Tax Practice Group of Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP. Mr. Burke devotes a majority of his practice to issues involving the taxation of partnerships, limited liability companies, S corporations, REITs and other entities treated as "pass-through" entities for federal income tax purposes. Within this area, he is a well recognized authority in the structuring and formation of investment funds (including venture capital, real estate and "hedge" funds) and complex commercial joint ventures and similar arrangements. The balance of Mr. Burke's practice focuses on corporate mergers and acquisitions, restructurings and financings. The core of this portion of his practice involves structuring and negotiating both taxable and tax-free corporate acquisitions. Mr. Burke also has significant experience with corporate "spin-offs" and public offerings of complex financial instruments.

Professional Activities

Mr. Burke is a member of the American Bar Association's Section on Taxation and serves on its Committee on Partnerships and Subcommittee on Partnership Allocations. He is also a past member of the Subcommittee on Partnerships with Tax-Exempt Partners. Mr. Burke has taught numerous courses on taxation of venture capital funds and real estate transactions, including courses for the Practicing Law Institute, the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education program and the Institute for International Research. He is a past co-chairperson of the seminar Private Equity Tax Practices, sponsored by the Institute for International Research, and has been a guest lecturer at the MIT Center for Real Estate.


  • Selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2013-2020 editions of Best Lawyers in America for his tax law practice
  • Recognized for his exceptional standing in the legal community in the area of tax law in the 2005-2018 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, with clients saying he is "very creative in terms of the way he addresses problems" and "very knowledgeable about the market," and who are impressed "not only by his knowledge of the law, but also how to apply it to practical business circumstances." 
  • Recommended in the 2016–2018 editions of the The Legal 500 United States in the area of Tax: US Taxes Non-Contentious
  • Named the 2014 "Partnership Tax Attorney of the Year" in Massachusetts by Corporate Intl Magazine
  • Named a "New England Super Lawyer" (formerly "Massachusetts Super Lawyer") in the 2004-2012 issues of Boston Magazine

Insights & News


  • Education

    • LLM, Boston University School of Law, 1984

    • JD, Cornell Law School, 1980

      magna cum laude Order of the Coif
    • BA, Williams College, 1976

      magna cum laude Phi Beta Kappa
  • Admissions

    • Massachusetts