• vcard
D 314.889.7057
F 314.754.8328
  • Education
    • J.D., magna cum laude, Saint Louis University, 2004, Alpha Sigma Nu Jesuit Honor Society; Order of the Woolsack; Managing Editor, Saint Louis University Public Law Review; Dean's List; Academic Excellence Award Recipient: Constitutional Law, Legal Profession and Jurisprudence
    • B.S., Truman State University, 2000
  • Court Admissions
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
    • U.S. District Court, District of Kansas

John protects individual and business clients, diligently working toward the best possible outcome in all of their legal matters. Focused in the area of trust and fiduciary litigation, John was recently named as the 2018 Lawyer of the Year by Best Lawyers for Trust and Estates Litigation. John serves clients by providing counseling, advice, and litigation support on matters relating to fiduciary relationships, will and trust contests, and all other disputes arising from asset transfer.

John also has significant experience in the area of intellectual property and technology litigation, including patent and trademark infringement, trade secrets, unfair competition, and licensing disputes. His national practice includes representation in state and federal courts, as well as administrative bodies such as the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

While John is fully prepared to proceed through trial, he understands the value of alternative dispute resolution and is fully versed in utilizing mediation and arbitration to obtain favorable results for clients.

  • Successfully argued for the preliminary, and ultimately permanent, removal of a prior trustee that refused to provide the necessary information the successor corporate trustee. After judgment was obtained in our client’s favor, worked to transition the assets and information to the new trustee.
  • Modified a failing trust through a court action by collaboratively working with over forty beneficiaries of different generations and addressing varying concerns.  Subsequent to judgment being entered, the trust has funded significant educational efforts for the beneficiaries without further controversy.
  • Successfully defended an attorney-in-fact from a challenge by beneficiaries.  After a complete and thorough accounting was provided to court-appointed counsel, the case was resolved on favorable terms.
  • Defended a trust from a challenge by heirs-at-law.  Worked with counsel for the beneficiaries and heirs to complete discovery in a cost-efficient and expedited manner.  After discovery was completed, the matter was successfully resolved.
  • Worked with beneficiaries and trustee client to resolve the interpretation of a trust without the necessity of litigation.  Through mediation, the parties were able to reach an agreement that was later reduced to a trust amendment and non-judicial settlement agreement.
  • Obtained a Writ of Mandamus from the Federal Circuit to force the transfer of a patent infringement matter out of the Eastern District of Texas to New York on behalf of a financial client. Thereafter prevailed on summary judgment of non-infringement and invalidity.   
  • Successfully represented a neutraceutical patent holder in the Western District of Missouri through claim construction. After a successful claim construction, the lawsuit was resolved on confidential terms.
  • Obtained a personal jurisdiction dismissal and transfer of a trademark declaratory judgment action filed in Texas on behalf of a client as the trademark holder. The case was transferred to the client’s home jurisdiction and thereafter dismissed.
  • Successfully defended a client in a patent infringement action filed in the Eastern District of Missouri. The case settled after successfully obtaining the reexamination of the asserted patent.
  • Successfully defended a health care system against a claim relating to a physician referral agreement. After prevailing at trial, the matter was appealed and successfully affirmed.
  • Successfully defended a real estate owner against a multi-million dollar claim relating to an option to purchase. After prevailing on summary judgment, the matter was appealed and successfully affirmed.
  • Successfully obtained dismissal of patent claims on the grounds that the United States, as co-owner, was not a party. Successfully defended Writ of Mandamus that followed. Case was thereafter settled on favorable terms.
  • After obtaining a dismissal that was ultimately overturned by the Missouri Supreme Court, a breach of trust case was tried to a successful conclusion, absolving the fiduciary of all liability.
  • Successful defense of a trust contest alleging that the trustee improperly obtained a trust amendment. Prevailed for the client on summary judgment and the case was thereafter resolved on favorable terms.
  • Successfully defended a trustee against a request for accounting from a contingent remainder beneficiary. After prevailing on summary judgment, the case was affirmed by the Court of Appeals.
text icon Publications & Presentations
When Bet-The-Farm Litigation Threatens The Family Business
Presenter
July 2017
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Webinar Presenter, The Knowledge Group
Jun 28, 2017
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Issues Involved in Challenging and Defending the Estate Plan
Presenter
May 2016
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The Lifecycle of Powers of Attorney for the Planner and the Litigator
Presenter
September 2015
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Understanding Key Issues in Fiduciary Litigation
Presenter
September 2014
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The Best, and Worst Ways that Fiduciaries Can Handle Beneficiaries
Presenter
January 2014
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No Guts No Glory: Issues Unique to Representing Fiduciaries
Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
February 2012
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Undoing the Written Word: Pitfalls, Possibilities, and Procedures in Will and Trust Contests
Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
February 2011
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Damages in Fiduciary Litigation: How to Calculate and Effectively Present
Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
February 2010
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Mock Probate Trial
Society of Financial Service Professionals
October 2009