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Hybrid Conference

2023 Annual Estate, Trust & Elder Law Institute

Total Credits: 12.2 MCLE, 4.8 Ethics, 1.0 Elimination of Bias



Join us for the 2023 Annual Estate, Trust & Elder Law Institute!
October 19-20, 2023
In-person Sheraton Westport Lakeside Chalet | St. Louis

Or Virtual

Presented by MoBarCLE, the Estate Planning and Probate Administration Committee, and the Elder Law Committee

Thursday | Oct. 19
8:30-9:30 | Registration and breakfast buffet

9:30-9:40 a.m. | Opening remarks 
Planning Chair: Daniel P. Wheeler, Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, Liberty

9:40-10:40 a.m. | Plenary
Ethical representation of unethical fiduciary
| Versailles l
Speaker: Daniel P. Wheeler
, Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, Liberty

10:40-11 a.m. | Break

11 a.m.-noon | Plenary
Anything but administration | Versailles l
Speakers: Dan Wheeler
, Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, Liberty; Heather Hall, Hall Legal Group, LLC, St. Peters

Noon-1:20 p.m. | Lunch | Versailles ll

1:20-2:20 p.m. | Plenary 
Expanded remote public access | Versailles l
Judges panel: Comm. Jill Hanley,
22nd Judicial Circuit, St. Louis; Comm. William Gust, 21st Judicial Circuit, St. Louis; Comm. Misty Watson, 21st Judicial Circuit, St. Louis; Comm. Amy DeGraeve, 16th Judicial Circuit, Kansas City
This session will focus on the various requirements for redaction within jurisdictions across the state. We will review the policy behind COR-2 and discuss open records. 

2:20-2:40 p.m. | Break

2:40-3:30 p.m. | Breakout session 1
Evidence in probate | Versailles l
Speakers: Comm. William Gust
, Probate Commissioner-St. Louis County Court, St. Louis; Heather Hall, Hall Legal Group, LLC, St. Peters

Planning in light of Hallam | Bern/St. Moritz
Speaker: Russell "Rusty" Fracassa
, Paths Law Firm, Lee's Summit
In 2018 the Missouri Western District ruled that a transfer upon death of a community spouse during the look-back period can disqualify an institutionalized spouse from MO HealthNet benefits. In this session we will discuss the Hallam decision and the opportunities available in planning to avoid such disqualification when planning for nursing home benefits.

The key takeaways will be understanding the case law and federal statutes discussed in the case, some advance planning techniques, as well as crisis planning for married couples.

3:30-3:50 p.m. | Break

3:50-4:40 p.m. | Breakout session 2
Navigating trust distribution language | Versailles l
Speaker: Jennifer Sanwald
, St. Louis Trust & Family Office, St. Louis
This presentation aims to provide attorneys with insights into the interpretation of trust distribution language by a corporate trustee, specifically focusing on the potential unintended consequences of including the typical ascertainable standards in trust documents. The presentation will also provide guidance on how to draft trust distribution language that is clear, specific, and aligned with the intentions of the grantor; it will also highlight the importance of expanded discretion to effectively meet the needs of present-day beneficiaries.

Attendees will be able to identify the legal and fiduciary obligations of corporate trustees in interpreting trust distribution language and understand the potential consequences of vague or imprecise standards. They will also gain insights into the factors that influence corporate trustee interpretation of trust distribution language, enabling them to advise clients on how to structure trust documents to meet their specific goals and objectives. Participants will learn strategies for drafting trust distribution language that is clear, specific, and aligned with grantor intentions, thus avoiding unintended consequences and effectively serving the needs of present-day beneficiaries and their families.

When can a trustee pass out capital gain? | Bern/St. Moritz
Speaker: Justin Meyer
, Parkside Financial Bank & Trust, Clayton
Typically, capital gain recognized inside a trust is reported on its annual fiduciary income tax return. However, there are times where it is advantageous to the trust and the beneficiaries if the capital gain is reported to the beneficiaries on a K-1.
This session will describe:

  • Why it can benefit the beneficiaries and when passing out capital gain is permissible under the Code.
  • Why passing out capital gain may be beneficial. 
  • When passing out capital gain to beneficiaries is appropriate and permissible.
  • What the legal authority to review when making a determination.

4:40-5 p.m. | Break

5-6 p.m. | Plenary
Legislative and case law update | Versailles l | Session sponsored by Clio
Speakers: Patrick J. Connaghan
, Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale PC, St. Louis; Comm. Amy DeGraeve, Jackson Co. Circuit Court, Kansas City
The speakers will discuss recent legislative changes and appellate decisions.

6-8 p.m. | Reception | Versailles ll

Friday, Oct. 20
8:00-9:00 | Registration and breakfast buffet

9-10 a.m. | Plenary
Let's talk about implicit bias | Versailles l
Speaker: Andrea M. Follett
, Missouri Department of Labor, Jefferson City | joining live virtually
As former Missouri Bar president Dana Tippin Cutter said, “Implicit bias can be harmful, neutral, or protective. But we all bring unconscious, implicit bias to the table. The key is to talk about it in a safe environment.” This CLE will explore why bias occurs, how to identify it in our daily lives, and, most importantly, how to interrupt and unlearn biased thinking. 

Focus Points:
• Review common forms of implicit bias 
• Recognize how implicit bias impacts the practice of law 
• Practice strategies to recognize implicit bias in our lives

10-10:30 a.m. | Break

10:30-11:20 a.m. | Breakout session 3
The effective use of experts in trust and estate litigation | Versailles l
Speakers: Mike W. Bartolacci
, St. Louis Trust & Family Office, St. Louis; Patrick J. Connaghan
A discussion of the practical aspects of selecting, preparing and presenting testimony from expert witnesses in litigation matters involving trust and estate issues, including capacity/undue influence, breach of duty, and investment matters. 
1.When experts are necessary. 
2. How to select an expert and when. 
3. How to present the testimony of the expert so that it is most persuasive.

Guardianship and conservatorship panel discussion | Bern/St. Moritz 
Speakers: Timothy Weaks,
Public Administrator of St. Louis County, St. Louis; Comm. Misty Watson, 21st Judicial Circuit, St. Louis; Moderator: Joshua S. Rose, Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, St. Louis
Missouri's Public Guardianship system currently faces challenges such as unprecedented caseloads, more complex cases, understaffing, and lack of uniformity across the state. The Public Administrators throughout the state do their best to navigate these challenges and ensure a standard of dignity and respect for all for whom they are appointed.

11:20 a.m.-12:45 p.m. | Lunch | Versailles ll

12:45 p.m.-1:35 p.m. | Breakout session 4
Salvaging the broken charitable remainder trust | Versailles l
Speaker: Jeffrey Glogower
, Polsinelli PC, St. Louis
Discussing statutory reformation and other forms of modification to qualify defective charitable remainder trusts.
1. The general rules behind the statutory reformation of charitable remainder trusts.
2. Process for reforming and/or terminating charitable lead trusts.
3. Other methods of modification to qualify a defective charitable remainder trust, such as via disclaimers, and post-mortem will contests.

Exceptions to the five-year look back | Bern/St. Moritz
Speaker: Lori Rook
, Ozarks Elder Law, Springfield

1:35-1:55 p.m. | Break

1:55-2:45 p.m. | Breakout session 5
Corporate transparency act | Versailles l
Speakers: Emily J. Kembell,  
Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, Springfield; Shane Rader, Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, Springfield
Come learn about comprehensive regulations stemming from the Corporate Transparency Act that go into effect on January 1, 2024. These regulations apply to entity formation and will require both attorneys and clients to report certain information on "beneficial owners" of entities. This information will be compiled in a national database used by the U.S. Department of Treasury to combat money-laundering and other illegal activities.

This presentation will give attendees a working knowledge of what entities are affected by these regulations, what reporting requirements are placed on them and their clients, the numerous exceptions to these requirements, and the repercussions of failing to comply.

International aspects of estate planning | Bern/St. Moritz
Speaker: Jeffrey Glogower

Discuss international estate planning, transfer tax planning for non-resident non-citizens, and the use of foreign trusts.
1. Understand transfer taxes applicable to non-resident non-citizens.
2. Provide working knowledge of expatriation rules and tax consequences.
3. Identify foreign trusts, tax issues associated with transfers to and from those trusts, and related reporting requirements. 

2:45-3 p.m. | Break

3-4 p.m. | Plenary
The subtle art of lawyering clients through trauma | Versailles l
Speaker: Katherine Wessling
, Crime Victim Center-Legal Rep. Program, St. Louis; Peggy Tyson, LPC, Director of Clinical Services at Crime Victim Center, St. Louis
This CLE will teach practitioners how primary and secondary traumas impact the brain. We will discuss how trauma can impact the attorney-client relationship and representation. We will then walk through practical examples of how trauma can arise during life of a case and how the attorney can recognize and address trauma reactions in both clients and themselves in order to fulfill their duties under 4-1.1, 4-1.4, and 4-1.16.

4-4:10 p.m. | Closing remarks and exhibitors’ passport drawing 
Planning Chair: Daniel P. Wheeler

4:10 p.m. | Adjourn


Michele 'Mike' Bartolacci's Profile

Michele 'Mike' Bartolacci Related Seminars and Products

Thompson Coburn, LLP

Mike W. Bartolacci is General Counsel for St. Louis Trust & Family Office in St. Louis, Missouri.  Prior to joining St. Louis Trust in 2023, Mike spent 33 years with the law firm of Thompson Coburn, LLP, where he led the Firm’s probate and trust litigation practice and tried numerous fiduciary cases in both the State and Federal Courts.  He was selected for inclusion in Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers from 2020-2022, and Best Lawyers in America from 2012-2022, being named Best Lawyers’ “Lawyer of the Year” for the St. Lous Region in Trust and Estate litigation in 2019 and 2021.
Mike received his undergraduate degree from the University of Missouri in 1985, where he was elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa.  He received his juris doctorate from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law in 1988, where he graduated 1st in his class and served as Editor-in-Chief of the Missouri Law Review.


Comm. Patrick Connaghan's Profile

Comm. Patrick Connaghan Related Seminars and Products

Of Counsel

UB Greensfelder LLP

Patrick Connaghan is a highly respected legal professional who previously served as the Probate Commissioner and Clerk of the Probate Division for the 22nd Judicial Circuit, which covers the City of St. Louis, from 2007 to 2022. In this role, he was responsible for administering and overseeing probate cases, including the management of trusts, estates, and guardianships, as well as hearing civil commitment cases involving mental health and addiction issues. He brings the deep knowledge and experience gained from his time at the probate court to help clients resolve issues in an effective manner and navigate difficult situations.

Before his appointment as Probate Commissioner, Patrick’s long and distinguished career in public service included 12 years as General Counsel for the St. Louis City Board of Aldermen. There, he was responsible for providing legal advice and representation to the board and its members, as well as drafting legislation and serving as a liaison to the city’s operating departments.

Comm. Amy DeGraeve's Profile

Comm. Amy DeGraeve Related Seminars and Products

Jackson Co. Circuit Court

Probate Commissioner Amy B. DeGraeve was appointed to the bench on October 29, 2021, by the judges of the 16th Circuit Court.
At the time of her appointment, Commissioner DeGraeve was an attorney with
The Counts Law Firm, LLC.   In her law practice she specialized in
fiduciary litigation, trust and probate estate administration, estate planning, income tax planning, business succession planning, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, guardianships and conservatorships.
Prior to employment at the Count Law Firm, she was an attorney with Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP, Lathrop & Gage LLP, and Vold & Morris.
Commissioner DeGraeve graduated from the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 2001 with a B.A. degree in Language and Literature.  She earned her Juris Doctor degree from UMKC Law School in 2004, and a Master of Laws in Taxation (LL.M.) degree in 2006.
She has served on the Jackson County Probate Procedures Manual Revision
Committee.   She is a member of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar
Association Probate and Estate Planning Committee.  She has also served as a member of the Children’s Mercy Hospital Donald H. Chisholm Planned Giving Council.
Commissioner DeGraeve was appointed to serve a four-year-term and was sworn in January 2022. 

Andrea Follett's Profile

Andrea Follett Related Seminars and Products

MO Dept of Labor

Andrea Follett is General Counsel at the Missouri Department of Labor & Industrial Relations. She received her BA and JD from the University of Missouri. Throughout her career, Follett has practiced appellate, employment, and education law, and she is a recipient of the Missouri Bar's David Dixon Appellate Advocacy Award.

Russell Fracassa's Profile

Russell Fracassa Related Seminars and Products

Paths Law Firm

Rusty Fracassa has more than 30 years experience working exclusively for seniors and their families with Medicaid, Veteran’s Benefits, Estate Planning, and Asset Protection Planning. He was an accountant and tax attorney before focusing on more sophisticated estate and asset protection planning.  A decade ago, he took a 3 year sabbatical, living in China as a Christian missionary followed by working as a senior adult pastor.  As an attorney he has been an active member of numerous and varied professional organizations, as well as a frequent speaker to professionals and the community.

Jeffrey Glogower's Profile

Jeffrey Glogower Related Seminars and Products

Polsinelli PC

Jeffrey Glogower is shareholder in the Wealth Planning Department of Polsinelli PC. He is based in St. Louis and concentrates his practice in the areas of estate planning, succession planning, trust and estate administration, wealth management, and transfer taxation. 



Comm. William Gust's Profile

Comm. William Gust Related Seminars and Products

Probate Commissioner-St. Louis County Court

William Gust is the Probate Commissioner for St. Louis County. Comm. Gust regularly hears a variety of contested probate matters including: adult guardianships, minor guardianships, contested matters relating to decedent estates, trust matters, and mental health civil commitment matters. He also presides over the administration of probate matters.

Prior to his time on the bench, Comm. Gust was a shareholder at an Am Law 100 law firm. While in practice he maintained both a local and national practice. He tried and litigated cases in various parts of the United States, ranging from St. Louis County Probate Court to Delaware Chancery Court. His expertise included everything from contested probate matters to complex civil matters. 


Heather Hall's Profile

Heather Hall Related Seminars and Products

Hall Legal Group, LLC

Heather M. Hall is a member of Schormann Law Firm, LLC, where she focuses her practice on fiduciary litigation, probate and trust administration, and minor and adult guardianships. Heather formerly clerked for the Honorable Kathleen Forsyth in the Probate Division of the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri, and has since dedicated her practice to fiduciary litigation and probate related matters. Heather is often appointed by St. Louis County as court-appointed counsel for respondents in guardianship and conservatorship proceedings. Heather received her J.D. with honors from the University of Missouri – Kansas City School of Law.

Comm. Jill M. Hanley's Profile

Comm. Jill M. Hanley Related Seminars and Products

22nd Judicial Circuit

Jill Hanley graduated from SLU Law School.  Jill has worked for a sole practitioner for three years with emphasis on estate planning and workers compensation.  She then worked for the Public Administrator for four years before being appointed Legal Counsel for the Probate Division of the 22nd Judicial Circuit in 2006.  She worked in this position for 11 years. Jill Hanley was then appointed Public Administrator in 2017 and worked in this position for 5 years.  She was then appointed Deputy Probate Commissioner in April of 2022 and then Probate Commissioner in June of 2022.

Emily Kembell's Profile

Emily Kembell Related Seminars and Products

Kirkland Woods & Martinsen

Emily Kembell is a partner at Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP. Ms. Kembell received her BS from Texas A & M University where she graduated summa cum laude. She received her JD and LL.M. in Taxation from NYU School of Law.

Justin Meyer's Profile

Justin Meyer Related Seminars and Products

Parkside Financial Bank & Trust

Estate planning and administration can be very complex and emotional. Justin Meyer provides our clients with an understanding of those complexities, comfort during the process, and assistance in protecting their family and wealth.

When navigating the complex and technical laws and regulations of estate planning and administration, it’s important to have expertise on your side. Justin has extensive experience in corporate trustee and estate planning and administration, having served nearly 15 years with U.S. Bank Private Wealth Management, starting out in the role of trust officer, and eventually serving as Senior Trust Managing Director, responsible for supervising trust administration for the East Region of the United States.

Prior to this role, Justin was a practicing attorney in the fields of estate planning, estate administration, and fiduciary litigation.

He received his Master of Laws in Taxation from the University of Alabama Law School, a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Minnesota, and a Bachelor of Science from Missouri State University.

Shane Rader's Profile

Shane Rader Related Seminars and Products

Kirkland Woods & Martinsen, LLP

Shane Rader joined the firm’s Springfield office in November of 2021. He practices in the areas of estate planning, trust and estate administration, and fiduciary litigation. Prior to joining the firm, Shane spent a year and a half practicing at an insurance defense law firm in Springfield. 

After graduating from Missouri State University with a degree in Accounting, Shane went to the University of Missouri in Columbia where he received his Juris Doctor degree with a concentration in tax and transactional law. He seeks to provide timely and reliable advice to his clients as they weigh important personal, legal, and financial decisions. Shane and his wife enjoy being close to friends and family in the Springfield area. In his free time, he enjoys running, kayaking, and other outdoor activities with his family.

Lori Rook's Profile

Lori Rook Related Seminars and Products

Ozarks Elder Law

Lori Rook is the Owner and Managing Attorney of Ozarks Elder Law and its nine offices in Southwest Missouri. She was born and raised in the Springfield area.  She obtained her undergraduate degree from Missouri State University in 2003 where she graduated with honors. In 2006, Lori received her law degree from Oklahoma City University School of Law before returning to the Springfield area to practice and raise her family.
Since 2012 Lori has focused her practice in the areas of Elder Law, Probate, Estate Planning, Business Formation, Real Estate and Litigation. Prior to joining Ozarks Elder Law, Lori’s practice was focused in the areas of Civil Litigation, specifically premises liability, insurance defense, contract disputes, product liability, premises liability, medical malpractice and real estate. During that time, she practiced with a local defense firm and large defense firm, gaining invaluable litigation and trial experience.
Lori is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) and currently serves on the Board as the Immediate Past President of the Missouri Chapter of (NAELA). She has also served as a member and Vice-Chair of the Missouri Bar Probate and Trust Committee and the Elder Law Committee.  Lori is a member of The Missouri Bar, The Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, The Southern Missouri Women Lawyers, The Catholic Business Network and The Christian County Bar Association. Lori is licensed to practice law in state and federal courts in Missouri and is a certified VA attorney.
Outside of her practice, Lori is dedicated to serving her community. Lori serves on the Judicare Panel and Volunteer Lawyer Panel with Legal Services of Southern Missouri.  In addition, Lori is a Board member for the Nixa Chamber of Commerce and serves on the Advisory Board for the Better Business Bureau and is very active in several other organizations such as the Junior League of Springfield where she previously served as a Board Member and most recently served as the chair of the Scholarship Committee. She has also served on many committees at both the state and local level. 
Lori’s expertise and commitment to providing exceptional legal representation has also earned her the respect of the Southwest Missouri legal and business communities. Lori received statewide recognition for her legal work in 2015, 2016 and 2017 when she was selected as one of Missouri/Kansas Super Lawyers “Rising Stars”.  In 2016 Springfield Business Journal named her a “Trusted Advisor.”  In 2017, she was selected by Missouri Lawyers Weekly as one of Missouri’s “Rising Stars” and later that same year Missouri Lawyers Weekly also named her a “Law Firm Leader.” She was selected by the Springfield Business Journal for inclusion in its 2019 Class of “40 Under 40.” Lori is also a 2019 graduate of Leadership Springfield and a 2017 graduate of Ozarkleads. Most recently, the Springfield Business Journal named Lori a 2021 Most Influential Women. 
In her free time, Lori enjoys speaking at the local and state level regarding elder law issues to both community members and other professionals. She also enjoys running and spending time with her husband and three children at Table Rock Lake. 

Joshua Rose's Profile

Joshua Rose Related Seminars and Products

Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP

Joshua S. Rose joined the St. Louis Office of Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP in August 2020.  Josh focuses his practice in fiduciary litigation, trust and estate administration, and guardianship/conservatorship. He routinely serves as court-appointed counsel for respondents in guardianship and conservatorship proceedings in St. Louis County.

Josh was recently admitted to the BAMSL Probate and Trust Law Steering Committee, and he is a graduate of the Heart of America Fellows Institute of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel.

Josh received his Juris Doctor from Saint Louis University School of Law.

Jennifer Sanwald's Profile

Jennifer Sanwald Related Seminars and Products

St. Louis Trust & Family Office

Jen Sanwald is a principal at St. Louis Trust & Family Office, where she acts as primary advisor for complex trust clients and serves as Chair of Trust Committee. She previously practiced at Lewis Rice, focused on estate planning and trust litigation. Jen received her J.D. from Washington University.

Peggy Tyson's Profile

Peggy Tyson Related Seminars and Products

Crime Victim Center

Peggy Tyson is a Licensed Professional Counselor and an approved licensed supervisor for the state of Missouri. Currently, she is the Director of Clinical Services for the Crime Victim Advocacy Center of St. Louis, the longest crime victim services agency still in existence in the United States. In addition to counseling clients who have experienced all types of crimes, she supervises a staff of counselors and interns. Ms. Tyson was an adjunct professor with Lindenwood University in their graduate counseling program, teaching Professional Internship classes for 16 years, retiring in 2020. She has presented at the Missouri Victim Assistance Network (MOVA) annual conference and the Missouri Mental Health Counselors Association (MMHCA) annual conference on such topics as Traumatic Grief, PTSD and the Crime Victim, Vicarious Trauma and Self Care, and Trauma-Informed Care. In addition, she has taught the Impact of Crime Victimization to probationers and parolees of the Missouri Department of Probation and Parole. She is also a trained National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) Crisis Responder and has responded to numerous local and national disasters, including 9/11 (New York City, NY) and Hurricane Katrina (Biloxi, MS). She has been an adjunct instructor for the Missouri State Victim Assistance Academy. She has worked within the criminal justice system, working as the therapist for the Victim Services Unit of the St. Louis Circuit Attorney's Office.  She volunteers her time with the Give An Hour program, which is a nationwide network to provide services to those in need, such as veterans and those impacted by disasters. She is a national board-certified clinical hypnotherapist and trained in EMDR.
Ms. Tyson has lived in the St. Louis area for 30 years and considers it her hometown. She and her husband were rescued by two beautiful Akitas, Rain and Storm. She loves to spend time with family and friends, making them an integral part of her own self-care.

Comm. Misty Watson's Profile

Comm. Misty Watson Related Seminars and Products

21st Judicial Circuit Court

Misty Watson was appointed Deputy Probate Commissioner for Saint Louis County in 2019. Prior to appointment, Watson was a member of the executive committee at Danna McKitrick. She has over fifteen years experience in trusts, estates, and guardianships.

Watson received the 2019 Publico Pro Bono Award from The Missouri Bar. She was the Washington University School of Law Women's Law Caucus International Women's Day 2013 Celebration Honoree and received the John R. Essner Award for pro bono work through Legal Services of Eastern Missouri. 

Watson received her LLM in Taxation and Juris Doctor from Washington University.

Timothy Weaks's Profile

Timothy Weaks Related Seminars and Products

Public Administrator of St. Louis County, Missouri

Timothy Weaks was appointed Public Administrator of St. Louis County on June 8, 2022. Prior, he served as Assistant Attorney General for the State of Missouri, and Attorney for the Juvenile Officer in Jefferson County, and Franklin County. He is a 2013 graduate of St. Louis University School of Law.

Katherine Wessling's Profile

Katherine Wessling Related Seminars and Products

Crime Victim Center

Katherine Wessling is Managing Attorney at Crime Victim Center, St. Louis. For 27 years she has represented domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking survivors. Her work with traumatized clients makes her a firm believer that all attorneys should be cognizant of secondary trauma and how it may impact their practice.

Daniel Wheeler's Profile

Daniel Wheeler Related Seminars and Products

Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP

Daniel P. Wheeler is a shareholder with the firm of Kirkland Woods & Martinsen LLP. Mr. Wheeler focuses his practice on fiduciary litigation, probate administration, adult and minor guardianships, and mediation in cases throughout Missouri and Kansas.
Mr. Wheeler served as a Probate Commissioner for the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri for more than fourteen years. As Probate Commissioner, he presided over family and fiduciary disputes in trust and probate matters, including fiduciary litigation, complex trust litigation, discovery of assets actions, surety claims and general probate administration in decedent, guardianship and conservatorship estates. He has been chosen to be the probate presenter at the annual Missouri Judicial College for the past seventeen years, and also presents annually at the conference of the Missouri Association of Probate & Associate Circuit Judges. He speaks regularly at the Missouri Bar annual meeting as well as numerous continuing legal education seminars for the Missouri Bar, the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association and the University of Missouri at Kansas City.
Prior to joining the bench, Mr. Wheeler was in engaged in private practice in the area of probate litigation and administration matters. He has tried thirty-two jury trials to completion, of which twenty-six were in the probate division of the circuit courts. He is licensed in the states of Missouri and Kansas, and has completed the mediation training requirements of the Missouri Supreme Court.
Mr. Wheeler received a bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Missouri - Columbia in 1981. While an undergraduate student, he was a captain of the University's cross-country and track teams, and he was a recipient of the Tom Bott's Award, the senior track leadership award. He received a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Missouri in 1985, where he was a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma business honor society. He received his law degree, cum laude, from the University of Missouri in 1985, and he was a member of the Missouri Law Review and the Order of the Coif honor society.

Conference Lodging Rates


Sheraton Westport Lakeside Chalet
191 Westport Plaza | St. Louis

Rates are per night, plus tax:
Single or Double $138

Conference lodging rates end September 15, or when the block is filled, whichever occurs first.

Cancellation Policy

2023 Annual Estate, Trust & Elder Law Institute Registration Cancellation & Refund Policy

  • All cancellation and refund requests must be in writing to
  • A FULL REFUND of the registration fee will be issued if we receive your written cancellation by October 12, 2023. You will not have access to electronic course materials.
  • NO REFUND of the registration fee will be issued if we receive your written cancellation, or transfer request, after October 12, 2023.  All participants will have access to electronic course materials and recordings.

Photo/Video/Comments Permission

MoBarCLE may take photos and video at this program. By attending, you give The Missouri Bar permission to use images or audio captured at these programs, as well as any written comment on evaluation forms, in any electronic or printed communications by The Missouri Bar and for any educational, advertising, and promotional purposes. You agree to release The Missouri Bar, its employees, agents, and designees from liability for any violation of any personal or proprietary right you may have in connection with such use.

Health and Safety Information

The Missouri Bar takes the safety and well-being of its members, the public, and its employees very seriously. We continue to monitor the latest public health updates. We will inform you of any changes to events that affect you. This includes any cancellation notices or changes to venue, format, or safety guidelines.

We encourage all attendees of Missouri Bar events to be aware of and follow public health guidelines for large gatherings. Help us keep everyone in attendance safe by not attending an event if you are ill or believe you may be contagious. Be respectful of the personal comfort level of other attendees when it comes to physical distancing, including shaking hands or other gestures common in networking environments.

By registering for and attending a Missouri Bar event, you agree to take reasonable health and safety precautions and to abide by The Missouri Bar’s posted meeting guidelines.

Please also be advised that, pursuant to RSMo. 537.1005, effective Aug. 28, 2021, “under Missouri law, any individual entering the premises or engaging the services of the business waives all civil liability against the individual or entity for any damages based on inherent risks associated with an exposure or potential exposure to COVID-19, except for recklessness or willful misconduct.”

Please contact The Missouri Bar with any questions or concerns.