J.D., Saint Louis University School of Law, cum laude, 1995
B.A., Political Science, Northwestern University, 1991
Betty Schaefer knows firsthand what arguments are more likely to be effective in probate court — she previously worked as legal counsel to the St. Louis County Probate Division. Today, she uses that experience and her extensive knowledge of the probate and trust codes to help clients resolve issues as efficiently and effectively as possible.
Betty’s ability to analyze the big picture in resolving disputes makes her a highly effective mediator, and she focuses a significant portion of her practice on mediation and handling contested probate and trust matters. With the complex family dynamics and emotions involved in these cases, her experience with the process and understanding of the rights of beneficiaries and the duties of fiduciaries are invaluable to ensuring issues are resolved smoothly and appropriately.
Betty helps clients with estate and trust administration matters, as well as estate planning and trust funding needs. She has helped clients with estate and trust controversies, particularly in the areas of probate, trust, and fiduciary litigation, and she has been appointed by local courts as a neutral third party or special fiduciary in numerous trust and estate disputes. Betty also assists clients with their estate planning needs, including special needs estate planning.
She also assists financial institutions with issues related to probate and trust administration, as well as advising them in their roles as corporate fiduciaries.
In her previous position with the probate court, Betty analyzed cases and advised attorneys on their options for handling matters before the court. She also focused on guardianship and conservatorship proceedings for minors and adults. This experience helped her develop inside-and-out knowledge of both the probate and trust codes, and that understanding — paired with a broad base of courtroom experience — helps her focus on effective arguments related to estate and trust controversies and litigation.
- American Bar Association
- The Missouri Bar
- Illinois State Bar Association
- Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
- St. Louis County Bar Association
- Estate Planning Council
- St. Louis County Probate Advisory Committee
- Missouri Families for Effective Autism Treatment (MO-FEAT), Board of Directors
Honors & Awards
Honors & Awards
- The Best Lawyers in America, Trusts and Estates, 2021-2024
News & Insights
- August 17, 2023
- Best Lawyers 2023 edition lists over 60 Greensfelder attorneys, including five St. Louis ‘Lawyers of the Year’August 18, 2022
- Best Lawyers 2022 Edition Lists 60 Greensfelder Attorneys, including Three St. Louis ‘Lawyers of the Year’August 19, 2021
- August 20, 2020
- February 2018
Seminars & Speaking Engagements
- The Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis' 31st Annual Trust & Estates Planning Institute, September 10, 2020
- St. Louis 15 Hour Review of the Law, Probate Practice Update, Time is Now! Series 2019University of Missouri-Kansas City, June 2019
- St. Louis 15 Hour Review of the Law, Probate Law Update, Time is Now! Series 2018University of Missouri-Kansas City, June 2018
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, July 23, 2020
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, July 31, 2019
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, August 20, 2018
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, May 3, 2017
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, February 28, 2017
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, November 30, 2016
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, November 2, 2016
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, July 12, 2016
- Preservation | Family Wealth Protection & Planning, April 5, 2016