The Burke Law Group, PLLC
Old City Hall Building
221 N. Wall St., Suite 624
Spokane, WA 99201

Main Office: (509) 466-7770
Collaborative Law: (509) 999-6747

Attorneys & Staff

John Burke

Of Counsel, practicing in Collaborative Law for Divorce, Uncontested Divorce and Estate Planning. On medical leave.


John Burke, the founder and former Managing Partner of Burke Law Group, is currently on medical leaqve and not able to accept new clients at this current time.  Honored as one of the area's 2016 "Top Lawyers" in the Spokane Coeur d'Alene Living Magazine.

Attorney John Burke focuses his practice principally in the areas of Collaborative Family Law and Estate Planning.

John is a strong believer in, and supporter of, the Collaborative Practice movement in the area of family law, and especially for divorces. He believes that for a majority of divorces, it is possible to have the couple resolve the issues involved with their divorce without having to go through the stress and trauma of court motions and, possibly, a trial. This can also result in a healthier post-divorce relationship, which can be very important when there are children involved.

John was the attorney for the husband in the first collaborative divorce case in Eastern Washington. He has continued this groundbreaking trend by being one of the most active collaborative divorce attorneys in eastern Washington, and now focuses his family law practice on collaborative divorce cases. This level of expertise and experience has resulted in other collaborative attorneys seeking his assistance and advice on difficult situations in their collaborative cases.

John has completed the initial training recommended by the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, and has continued to attend supplemental advanced collaborative training in an effort to provide the best possible service to his clients. John has also co-presented public education seminars on collaborative practice to various professional groups in the general Spokane area.

John is a co-founder of both Collaborative Professionals of Washington and Spokane County Collaborative Professionals, and served as an officer and board member of both organizations for a combined total of over 12 years. These two organizations are active in the effort to educate both the public and legal professionals about Collaborative Practice, and the revolutionary way it helps individuals resolve their divorce issues.

For estate planning, John concentrates on small and medium sized estates. It is his philosophy that everyone should have access to affordable estate planning; not just the wealthy. His emphasis on the small to middle sized estates allows him to provide affordable estate planning to a large segment of the public who might otherwise go without the benefit of a lawyer to guide them in structuring their estate plans.

Something unique about John is that he brings an extensive mix of past experience to his law practice. Prior to attending law school at Gonzaga University, John had a successful business career, working himself up to being COO of a national marketing company with over 200 employees. He also served the country as an Air Force officer for four years immediately after earning his bachelor degree. It is this combination of practical business experience and legal training that gives John a unique and deep understanding of the desires and/or issues that cause a person to seek legal assistance.

John graduated with honors (magna cum laude) from Gonzaga University School of Law. He then started his law career as an associate at the law firm of Reed & Giesa P.S., a litigation firm that specialized in complex business litigation and high net worth divorces. In 2005, John decided to leave Reed & Giesa to establishing his own law firm, which has grown to become Burke Law Group PLLC.

John and his wife have 8 children and 11 grandchildren. He has volunteered for various youth groups, including the Boy Scouts as Scout Master and 5 years as a Junior Achievement Advisor. He is an avid outdoorsman and do-it-yourselfer. He loves virtually all watersports, including scuba diving. His children grew up with horses, and he (or more accurately his wife) currently owns several horses. For new challenges, John earned his private pilot certificate in 2006.


John Burke graduated from Gonzaga University School of Law (magna cum laude). He earned a Bachelor of Science in Business from the University Of Minnesota College Of Business Administration.

Additional Information

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Meet Our Attorneys

Dena Allen

Principal / Member of the Firm, practicing in Family Law Litigation, Collaborative Law Divorce, Cooperative Divorce, Adoptions, Estate Planning, and Probate

John Burke

Of Counsel, practicing in Collaborative Law for Divorce, Uncontested Divorce and Estate Planning. On medical leave.

Matthew Fischer

Principal / Managing Member of the Firm, practicing in all areas of Family Law Litigation, Divorce and Uncontested Divorce. Also serves as a Spokane County Superior Court Pro Tem Commissioner

Cathy Helman

Associate Attorney, practicing in Appeals, Probate, Estate Planning, Family Law, and Bankruptcy. Also is an Administrative Law Judge Pro Tem with the Washington State Office of Administrative Hearings.

Joseph Linehan

Of Counsel, practicing in Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) appeals, Family Law Litigation, Divorce, and Dependency. Also serves as a Spokane County Superior Court Pro Tem Commissioner

Robin Schmahl

Senior Associate Attorney, practicing in Family Law Litigation, Uncontested Divorce, Estate Planning, Probate, and Guardianship

Rhylee Smith

Associate Attorney, admitted to practice in Washington and Idaho, practicing in all aspects of Family Law, Divorce, Child Custody and Support, and Modifications to Existing Orders

Kenneth Zigler, Jr.

Of Counsel, practicing in Family Law Litigation, Divorce, Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) and SSI benefits, and Lawsuits and Disputes including Personal Injury

Joanna Stranger

Rule 9 Intern, practicing in Family Law and Divorce