Stephen J. Briggs

Primary Practice Areas

Estate and Trust Planning and Administration
Educational Institutions
Real Estate Transactions, Development and Financing
Business Organizations, Governance and Succession Planning


Macalester College, B.A., 1972
University of Minnesota, J.D., 1975


The Missouri Bar, 1975
U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri U.S. Tax Court

Steve decided he was going to be lawyer while he was still a student at Central High School. He went on to study Political Science at Macalester College in St. Paul, where he was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society, and completed his law degree at the University of Minnesota.

He came straight back to St. Joseph, and joined the firm right away. Today, Steve takes the lead on most of the firm’s educational institutions and real estate development work.

“As technology has improved, people expect answers immediately,” Steve says. “But some issues are complex — there have been multiple, significant changes in Federal Estate Tax laws over the years, for example. There are still times when you simply must take the time to think through a client’s problem. Rushing to solve an issue just because technology may allow you to do so does not serve our clients well.”

Following the legacy of both William Morton, Sr. and David Morton to engage in community service, Steve has devoted volunteer time to the following organizations or projects: Member and President of the St. Joseph Library Board; member of the Missouri Western State University Foundation Board; member of the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art Board; chair of the successful St. Joseph Library tax levy campaign; co-chair of the citizens’ successful St. Joseph School District levy campaign; co-chair of the 2013 successful levy to pass a tax for public safety; member of the St. Joseph City Charter Commission which wrote the city charter in 1980-81; chair of the 2008-09 Citizens Charter Review Committee; member and chair of the Board of First Christian Church.

Photo of Stephen J. Briggs “Our values have deep roots. David Morton and his father before him, William Morton, Sr., were committed to principles of integrity and quality service to clients, and giving back to the community.” – Steve Briggs