• Ann Arbor
    Ann Arbor
    201 S. Division Street
    Suite 400
    Ann Arbor, MI 48104
    T 734-761-3780
  • Cheboygan
    Cheboygan
    229 Court Street
    P.O. Box 405
    Cheboygan, MI 49721
    T 231-627-8000
  • Detroit
    Detroit
    1901 St. Antoine Street
    6th Floor at Ford Field
    Detroit, MI 48226
    T 313-259-7777
  • Grand Rapids
    Grand Rapids
    99 Monroe Avenue NW
    Suite 506
    Grand Rapids, MI 49503
    T 616-205-4330
  • Troy
    Troy
    201 W. Big Beaver Road
    Suite 500
    Troy, MI 48084
    T 248-743-6000
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competitive drive
 

Kelly M. Burnell

Member,Detroit

T 313-393-7514F 313-393-7579313-393-7514

competitive drive
Practices & Industries
Education
  • Michigan State University College of Law, J.D., summa cum laude
  • University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, B.B.A.
Admissions
  • Michigan
Professional Affiliations
  • Financial and Estate Planning Council of Metropolitan Detroit
  • Michigan Women in Finance
  • State Bar of Michigan
  • Washtenaw Estate Planning Council
Overview

Kelly Burnell advises wealthy individuals and families on estate planning, trust and estate administration, probate and tax planning matters. Practicing in both the Detroit and Ann Arbor offices of the firm, she serves as a trusted advisor and counselor to her clients and assists with managing their personal and financial affairs, including real estate investments, as well as business formation, restructuring and succession planning.

Ms. Burnell has a particular expertise representing high net worth clients and business owners with the purchase and sale of personal residences, investment properties and commercial real estate. She typically manages over 10 real estate transactions each year with an aggregate value of approximately $20 to $30 million, effectively negotiating purchase and sale contracts, resolving inspection, title and survey issues, and handling closing matters.

Ms. Burnell closely advises business owner clients on reorganizing their ownership and entity structures to maintain and centralize control, generate tax savings and efficiencies, and for privacy reasons and liability protection. For instance, she has assisted several wealthy business owners recapitalize corporate stock into voting and non-voting shares for gift tax planning purposes and form holding companies with wholly-owned subsidiaries to separately own business assets and operations for more effective income tax planning and limiting liability.

Ms. Burnell also assists clients with a variety of economic development projects and advises them on property tax abatements, tax credits, financial grants and other incentives. She has successfully represented corporate clients seeking to identify and obtain all available government incentives to locate or expand facilities in Michigan.

Prior to joining Bodman, Ms. Burnell was an attorney at Ernst & Young focusing her efforts on negotiating and securing tax and financial incentives for corporate clients generating capital investments and creating new jobs in Michigan, advising on tax issues associated with mergers and acquisitions, and advising on state and local tax planning matters. While at Michigan State University College of Law, she served as a teaching assistant for Basic Income Taxation A and B, as a law clerk for the State of Michigan Tax Tribunal, and as Managing Editor of Outside Submissions for the Journal of Business & Securities Law. She was recipient of the Jurisprudence Award in Estate and Gift Taxation.

Ms. Burnell grew up in a small town in Northern Michigan and currently resides in Plymouth with her husband and three children. 

Professional Affiliations
  • State Bar of Michigan
    • Probate & Estate Planning Section
    • Taxation Section
  • Financial and Estate Planning Council of Metropolitan Detroit
  • Michigan Women's Tax Association
  • Washtenaw Estate Planning Council
Publications
Speaking Engagements
  • “Estate Planning Tax Considerations for 2015,” Speaker, Institute for Continuing Legal Education (ICLE), February 19, 2015, Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • “2014 Annual Accounting & Regulatory Update: Estate Planning and Property Transfer Update," Presenter, UHY LLP,  December 4, 2014, Troy, Michigan
  • “Directed Trusts and Divided Trusteeship: Origin Evolution and Implications,” Speaker, Midwest Trust and Wealth Management Conference/Michigan Bankers Association, October 7, 2014, Plymouth, Michigan
  • “2013 Annual Accounting & Regulatory Update: Estate Tax Planning & Succession Transfers,” Co-presenter, UHY LLP, December 4, 2013, Troy, Michigan

 

Representative Matters
  • Representing long-time clients in connection with the $15 million sale of highly desirable commercial real estate in Detroit.
  • Advising a large corporation on complicated issues associated with MEGA tax credit and corporate reorganization in a highly pressured situation with a tight time frame, resulting in a favorable ruling from the Department of Treasury and preserving tax credits worth several million dollars.
  • Representing a client in connection with the $4.5 million sale of a personal residence in an exclusive Detroit suburb and the $3.6 million sale of a private residential lot in an upscale guarded neighborhood near Grosse Pointe.
  • Helping a Fortune 500 company obtain more than $7 million in tax and business development incentives to establish a new headquarters facility in Michigan.
  • Helping an international company obtain over $1 million in property tax savings to establish a new research and development facility in Michigan.

 

 

 

Practices & Industries Education
  • Michigan State University College of Law, J.D., summa cum laude
  • University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, B.B.A.
Admissions
  • Michigan
Professional Affiliations
  • Financial and Estate Planning Council of Metropolitan Detroit
  • Michigan Women in Finance
  • State Bar of Michigan
  • Washtenaw Estate Planning Council