Richard F. Burke, Jr.

Top rated Personal Injury attorney in Chicago, Illinois

Clifford Law Offices
Richard F. Burke, Jr.
Clifford Law Offices

Practice Areas: Personal Injury, Medical Malpractice, Products Liability; view more

Licensed in Illinois since: 1978

Education: DePaul University College of Law

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2005, 2007 - 2024

Clifford Law Offices

120 North LaSalle Street
36th Floor
Chicago, IL 60602 Visit website


Richard Burke is a partner at Clifford Law Offices. He is an outstanding product liability attorney and one of the most respected aviation liability attorneys in Chicago. Mr. Burke is experienced in many complex practice areas including medical malpractice, nursing home negligence, heavy truck litigation, product liability, aviation liability, aviation litigation, airline liability, and other forms of transportation liability.

Over his decades of work at Clifford Law Offices, he has obtained multiple million-dollar-plus settlements in truck collision cases, including an $11 million resolution for a client with catastrophic permanent injuries. 

A tireless worker, Mr. Burke stays on task with the most difficult of cases. He is a quiet, behind-the-scenes leader who knows how to get things done. From establishing groundbreaking liability in sport utility vehicle rollovers to negligent product design and operation of jumbo jet passenger aircrafts, he explores every angle of his cases whether it be researching case law across the country or garnering experts from the other side of the globe. Mr. Burke uncovers the answers to each issue, leading him to many successful verdicts at trial.

Mr. Burke regularly litigates cases involving a wide array of product defects, including motor vehicle rollovers, seat failures, tire defects, brake failures, fuel system fires, and unsafe all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, helmets, and lawnmowers. He also frequently handles cases resulting from defects in factory equipment, as well as construction site hazards, tractor-trailer truck collisions, and medical negligence claims. He has obtained numerous multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements on behalf of seriously injured clients over the past 30 years.

Mr. Burke initially acquired his trial skills as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Cook County for 12 years. He rose up the ranks among his peers to become the supervisor of felony trial prosecutors in two busy suburban courthouses. At that point, he decided to use those litigation skills in the civil arena, and he has been a valuable member of the Clifford Law Offices’ team of Chicago personal injury attorneys ever since.

He went to Loyola University where he earned his bachelor’s degree in biology. He later went on to the University of Chicago where he earned a Master’s in Business Administration.

“My type of work is particularly gratifying, helping people whose lives have been catastrophically altered as a result of serious injury through someone’s negligence,” Burke says. “Sometimes the most rewarding aspect of my work is comforting and counseling people shortly after traumatic occurrences or incidents when they really don’t know where to turn or how to deal with monstrous medical bills, an inability to work, and sometimes they even are unable to engage in basic daily care needs.”

“I like to think that Clifford Law Offices is there for people who need us at their worst hour.”

Practice areas

Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff, Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Plaintiff, Personal Injury - Products: Plaintiff

Focus areas

Medical Malpractice, Trucking Accidents

  • 50% Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff
  • 30% Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Plaintiff
  • 20% Personal Injury - Products: Plaintiff

First Admitted: 1978, Illinois

Professional Webpage:

Educational Background:
  • University of Chicago, MBA, 1988
  • Loyola University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, B.S., Bachelor of Science, 1975
Bar/Professional Activity:
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Member, Committee on Judicial Evaluation (1993 - 1999), 1999
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit, 1988., 1988
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois, 1988., 1988
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois Trial Bar, 1978., 1978
  • Illinois, 1978
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation, Member, 1978
  • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA), Member, 1978
  • American Trial Lawyers Association (ATLA), Member
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA), Member, 1978
Other Outstanding Achievements:
  • Richard Burke is one of the faculty for the 9th Annual Circuit Court Boot Camp: The Nuts and Bolts, 2019
Scholarly Lectures/Writings:
  • Clifford and Burke will discuss business interruption insurance, pandemic coverage provisions and proactive measures that can be taken by business owners., Speaker, "Recovering COVID-19 Business Expenses and Lost Profits - Maximizing Commercial Insurance Coverage", Kelleher & Buckley, LLC, 2020
  • Richard F. Burke and James C. Pullos, partners at Clifford Law Offices, will be speaking Wednesday, July 21st, 2020 on “Business Interruption Claims: A discussion of the practical and legal issues” in light of the COVID-19 pandemic., Speaker, "Business Interruption Claims: A discussion of the practical and legal issues", Northwest Suburban Bar Association , 2020
  • This program delves into general litigation skills and strategies as well as providing an inside look at, and advice about, litigating in Illinois Circuit Court., Faculty , 9th Annual Circuit Court Boot Camp: The Nuts and Bolts, Pincus Professional Education, 2019
  • Cook County State's Attorney's Office "Use of Experts in Civil Cases," 2001., "Use of Experts in Civil Cases", 2001
  • Chicago Bar Association "Closing Argument Law," 2000., "Closing Argument Law", Chicago Bar Association, 2000
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association "Motor Vehicle Product Liability Cases," 2000., "Motor Vehicle Product Liability Cases", Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2000
  • Illinois State Bar Association Trial Techniques Course - "Objections During Trial," 2000., "Objections During Trial", Illinois State Bar Association , 2000
  • "Cost Effective Trial Exhibits," 1999., "Cost Effective Trial Exhibits", 1999
  • "Litigating Personal Injury Cases," 1998., "Litigating Personal Injury Cases", 1998
  • Tort Law Update Seminar, “Product Liability Cases,” 1997, Instructor, Product Liability Cases, 1997
  • "Maximizing Damages," 1996., "Maximizing Damages", 1996
  • Instructor, Federal Trial Bar Advocacy Training, 1993 – 1995, Instructor, Federal Trial Bar Advocacy Training, 1995
  • Best Lawyers in America (2015-Present), Best Lawyers in America, Best Lawyers in America, 2023
  • Lawdragon, 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers, 2023, 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers, Lawdragon, 2023
  • Super Lawyers (2005, 2007 – Present), Super Lawyers, Super Lawyers, 2023
  • Leading Lawyers (2015-2020), Leading Lawyers, Leading Lawyers, 2020
  • Martindale-Hubbell, Peer rated Highest Level of Professional Excellence, 2019, Peer Rated Highest Level of Professional Excellence, Martindale-Hubbell, 2019
Verdicts/Settlements (Case Results):
  • Richard F. Burke, along with Jack J. Casciato, obtained a $3 million settlement on behalf of a 57-year-old female who struck her head on hard floor after she fell backward from an office chair which had an unstable design that caused it to tip unexpectedly, resulting in a brain bleed and death. , 2023
  • Richard F. Burke obtained a $1.125 million settlement on behalf of a 56-year-old male who suffered extensive injuries and required multiple debridement procedures due to nursing home and medical negligence resulting from a failure to timely respond to signs of an acute bacterial infection. , 2022
  • Rich Burke obtained a $4.2 million settlement on behalf of a husband and father of two young children who was killed when a semi-tractor tanker truck crashed head-on into his vehicle., 2019
  • Rich Burke obtained a $2.85 million settlement on behalf of a 45-year-old man who lost part of his leg after it was crushed due to the unsafe design of a large piece of industrial equipment used in a Chicago manufacturing plant. , 2019
  • Rich Burke obtained a $2.25 million settlement on behalf of a construction laborer who experienced permanent back injuries when he was struck by a piece of equipment protruding from a passing truck on a roadway construction job site. , 2018
  • Rich Burke obtained a $1.65 million settlement on behalf of a plaintiff who sustained permanent back injuries when a stretcher unexpectedly collapsed as a result of a defective design. , 2018
  • Rich, along with founder and senior partner Bob Clifford, obtained a $1.3 million settlement on behalf of a woman who was helping out in a restaurant and sustained significant burn injuries when a poorly maintained oven exploded and caused a flash fire. , 2016
  • Mr. Burke received an $11 million settlement in the death of an executive who was killed in a small corporate jet crash. , 2014
  • Rich Burke, along with partner Shannon McNulty, obtained a $2 million settlement on behalf of a young mother who was in labor for 25 hours with prolonged periods during which her baby was deprived of sufficient oxygen and suffered from poor fetal tones. Her son was born with cerebral palsy and he died two years later from a seizure disorder. , 2009
  • Mr. Burke obtained a settlement in excess of $3 million for the surviving family of a golfer found underneath a golf cart that apparently had accelerated unexpectedly due to design defects in the accelerator pedal assembly components. 
  • Mr. Burke obtained a $3.45 million settlement on behalf of a girl who was rendered a quadriplegic when she was struck by a police car. 
  • Mr. Burke obtained a $3.5 million settlement for the death of an eight-year-old boy that resulted from a defective design in the rear passenger area of his family's conversion van.
  • Mr. Burke tried a case of a private jet that crashed at Palwaukee Municipal Airport before a Cook County jury on behalf of the family of the pilot who was killed in the crash. Following a five-week trial, the jury handed down a $10.45 million verdict, finding the airport 90 percent at fault for failing to provide a proper runway safety area.
  • Mr. Burke's accomplishments as an aviation law attorney extend to Canada, where he handled a plane crash case that occurred in Ontario. He filed suit in both the United States and Canada, successfully settling the case in Canada for $4.2 million.  , 2002
  • Mr. Burke joined Robert Clifford in a case involving the rollover of a sport utility vehicle where a 15-year-old girl was severely injured and two teenage girls were killed when the SUV rolled over on a Chicago expressway. Burke and Clifford recovered a $22 million settlement., 2001

Office location for Richard F. Burke, Jr.

120 North LaSalle Street
36th Floor
Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: 888-395-2426


19 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2005, 2007 - 2024

Attorney resources for Richard F. Burke, Jr.

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