Charles A. Cheever

Co-Managing Partner

Having joined Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP in 1996, Charles currently leads the firm as its co-managing partner.  Servicing clients around the world from a single office in Boston, Choate is one of the pre-eminent law firms in the United States.

With legal and business experts who are hands-on and highly collaborative, Choate delivers excellence for its clients in the following core practice areas: 

  • middle-market private equity/M&A
  • finance and restructuring
  • complex investigations and litigation
  • life sciences and technology companies
  • wealth management and family office services

In addition, Charles serves as co-chair of Choate’s globally-recognized Wealth Management Group where he serves as a professional trustee, legal and business advisor for some of the country’s wealthiest families.  In this role, he develops and operates customized "family offices" for multi-generational families, personally overseeing more than $1 billion of assets.  

Known for creating deep teams of Choate experts in key legal and investment disciplines, Charles works with his colleagues to deliver highly personal service for the family offices he creates in the areas of investment management, estate and gift tax planning, income tax planning and return preparation, trust and estate administration services, family stewardship and succession planning, and philanthropy.

Charles works extensively with Choate Investment Advisors — the firm’s investment management subsidiary — to manage each client’s investment assets and to provide access to investment opportunities in public and private markets. On one hand, he acts as an advisor to the principals of these funds on tax and related issues. On the other, as a trustee, he invests client funds in these private markets — focusing on search funds, venture capital, and private equity funds.

He also serves as a trustee and advisor for families committed to philanthropy, overseeing private foundations and charitable trusts worth more than $200 million.

Charles is a member of Choate’s Executive Committee.

Recognition

  • Best Lawyers in America (2009-2024)
  • Massachusetts Super Lawyer

Representative Engagements

  • Planned tax strategies to preserve and manage $30 million of waterfront property for multiple generations of a single family.
  • Executed estate planning strategy for venture capital client that transferred $66 million to children free of gift tax through grantor retained annuity trust.
  • Created limited partnerships, limited liability companies and trusts for asset protection and wealth preservation purposes, including recent tax-free sale of multi-million dollar commercial real estate to long-term family trust.

Publications and Presentations

  • “You Don’t Have to be a Billionaire to Plan Like One,” quoted, Forbes.
  • “Practice Management: Trust Solves a $30 Million Problem,” featured, The Wall Street Journal.

Charles is a speaker on estate planning and wealth management strategies throughout Massachusetts.

Professional and Community Involvement

  • Member of the Firm’s Executive Committee
  • Member of many charitable organizations, including the Massachusetts Charitable Society and Perkins School for the Blind
  • Member of the American Bar Association
  • Member of the Boston Bar Association

Education & Credentials

University of Virginia School of Law
JD, 1995
Harvard University
BA, 1990

Admissions

Massachusetts

Charles' Insights