Danielle M. Burness Associate

Dani advises individuals and families on the preservation, transfer and management of wealth, charitable giving and business succession planning. Dani also focuses on tax-exempt organizations, cross-border asset protection, tax compliance and reporting matters.

She serves as a trusted advisor to ultra-high-net worth families, family offices and closely held businesses. For her individual and family clients, Dani’s practice often involves complex income tax planning, estate administration, estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer tax issues and representing taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service.

Dani regularly advises public charities and private foundations in various governance, endowment, investment, tax and compliance matters. She also advises fiduciaries regarding the administration of complex estates and trusts.


Advises on a full range of wealth transfer planning issues, including gift, estate, and generation-skipping taxes, trusts, charitable giving and transfer tax leveraging transactions, including estate freeze and planning for private equity principals and holders of real estate interests with negative capital accounts.

Prepares estate planning documents, including wills, living trusts, life insurance trusts, generation-skipping trusts, gifting trusts, trusts for minors, charitable trusts, insurance trusts, GRATs, family limited partnerships and limited liability companies.

Represents executors and trustees in fiduciary litigation, estate and trust administration matters and in the preparation and filing of estate tax returns.

Provides financial, tax, and general business advice and planning to owners of closely held businesses.

Works with individual clients on the legal strategies to finance, build and expand start-up businesses.

Creates and assists families with the administration of private family trust companies.

Implements planned charitable gifting, including charitable remainder trusts, charitable lead trusts, gift annuities, and gifts of remainder interests in personal residences, including related gift documents and plans to meet unique donor objectives.

Assists in the formation of tax-exempt entities and secure federal, state and local tax exemptions and letter rulings.

Advises clients regarding private foundation rules, including self-dealing, excess benefit transactions and jeopardy investments.

Counsels public charities and private foundations with respect to the tax and legal requirements associated with the operation of their organizations, including formation and governance, review of tax and informational filings and coordination of day-to-day administration.

Advises individuals and entities on U.S. inbound and outbound investments, including U.S. ownership of foreign entities (including PFICs and CFCs); collaborates with domestic and foreign counsel and intermediaries; analyzes the impact of foreign laws; and advises and implements plans for disclosure of foreign assets.

Represents taxpayers in collections, offers in controversy disputes, residency matters and Offshore Voluntary Disclosures with the IRS and state tax agencies.

Provides pre- and post-immigration planning and all stages of expatriation.

  • New York University School of Law, LL.M. Taxation
  • The George Washington University Law School, JD
  • Washington University in St. Louis, BA, magna cum laude
  • Speaker, Wealth Planning Seminar, Charlotte, October 2021
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