David C. Burtker

David C. Burtker

Equity PartnerChicago Office

In his 35 years of practice, David C. Burtker has handled all forms of medical civil litigation, with special emphasis on the trial practice of medical and health professional negligence, pharmaceutical manufacturer liability and medical products liability matters.

He opened the Chicago office of Cunningham, Meyer & Vedrine, along with Mike Slovis, in 2002.

Over the years he has defended specialists in anesthesiology, cardiology, general surgery, high-risk obstetrics/gynecology, psychiatry/suicide and urology.

Dave also regularly handles complex multidistrict litigation cases, including cases related to manufacturers' prescription medication warning cases and medical providers who prescribe those drugs, as well as recent high-profile cases involving a compounding company’s unsanitary practices.

He brings to the courtroom his extensive understanding of the complex medical/pharmaceutical issues regarding methylprednisolone, fentanyl, benzodiazepines, Aqua Mephyton and other medications, as well as complications related to various complex medical conditions, such as intrapartum asphyxia/neonatal encephalopathy (HIE) alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) deficiency, spinal cord injuries, and atrial fibrillation/cardiac ablation.

Dave’s experience and successful trial record have been the topic of articles in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, Chicago magazine, Illinois Legal Times, Mealey’s Litigation Report, Anesthesia Malpractice Prevention and the National Law Journal.

He is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates, American Academy of Trial Lawyers and the International Society of Barristers, all invitation-only organizations for top litigators. He was also recently elected to the board of directors for the Society of Trial Lawyers, which oversees this elite group of Illinois’ top trial lawyers.

At trial, he has been described by plaintiff's counsel in closing argument as a litigator that only takes on the “most difficult, and impossible cases” for his clients. (The latter comment was objected to, and the Court overruled the objection).

Dave is a frequent speaker on issues regarding trial practice and medical risk management for private and public organizations and insurance corporations, including Illinois State Inter-Insurance Exchange, CNA Insurance, The Doctor’s Company and Medical Protective. Dave has also authored several videos on deposition and trial preparation for the healthcare community.


  • Northern Illinois University College of Law, J.D., 1978
  • Illinois State University, B.S., 1975


  • State of Illinois
  • State of Tennessee
  • Commonwealth of Kentucky
  • Trial Bar and U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Trial Bar and U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
  • Supreme Court of the United States