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

Robin Schmahl

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

Robin Schmahl focuses her practice on family law, divorce, estate planning, and probate.  Prior to becoming a lawyer, Robin proudly served in the U.S. Army, worked as a ranch hand training horses, designed and wrote software systems, managed a bed & breakfast, tracked government grants for scientists at Berkeley, and taught puppetry in Borneo.  This diverse background exposed her to people from all walks of life and many different industries, but Robin found her true calling as an attorney.

Robin received her undergraduate degree from U.C. Berkeley (cum laude) in 1993 and received her law degree from Emory University School of Law (with honors) in 1996.  After graduating from law school, she joined the Atlanta office of one of the world’s largest law firms as a tort defense attorney, representing Fortune 500 clients in high-stakes litigation.  Robin says: “I thoroughly enjoyed my 15-year tenure with my Atlanta firm -- the intellectual challenge, friendship, mentorship, and culture of integrity gave me a great sense of satisfaction.  However, I missed my family in Washington, and wanted the chance to help regular people with their legal problems.  What drew me to Burke Law Group was the firm’s reputation for being tough but ethical, as well as the firm’s commitment to client service, professional courtesy, and collegiality.  These are all values that are paramount to me.”

“Going through a divorce, disagreements over child custody, or settling the affairs of a loved one who has passed away can be the most difficult chapter in a person’s life, when reason sometimes takes a back seat to overwrought emotions.  An attorney who throws gasoline on the fire is not serving his or her clients’ best interests.  In my view, an attorney should truly be a “counselor at law”, who is a combination of zealous advocate, sleuth, and the voice of reason when emotions run high.  Although I am a no-nonsense litigator, I encourage clients to use settlement and mediation to resolve disputes, whenever feasible.  Strategically using alternative dispute resolution can significantly reduce the financial and emotional toll of litigation.”

Robin considers the relationship between herself and the clients she serves as a partnership, in which she honors each person’s unique perspective, goals, and concerns.  “There is no one-size-fits-all solution for legal problems, especially in the arena of family law.  I witnessed first-hand the utter frustration of a close family member whose divorce dragged on for five years because her attorneys would not return phone calls for weeks at a time, and seemingly wanted to substitute their own values for what she wanted.  I welcome open and honest conversations, where we can explore what is most important, so that I have a clear understanding of what my clients’ goals and priorities really are.  A partnership-oriented relationship is the foundation of my commitment to client service.”

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

Principal / Managing Member of the Firm, practicing in Collaborative Law for Divorce, Uncontested Divorce and Estate Planning

Matthew Fischer

Principal / 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

Kelly Padgham

Former Principal / Member of the Firm; Kelly passed away on September 20, 2015