Michael R. Thiessen has extensive experience in sophisticated estate planning for a variety of estates. He is particularly knowledgeable on those involving family-owned businesses, and he provides thoughtful counsel on the transition of ownership. Michael advises his clients on multi-generational planning and the utilization of family limited partnerships, irrevocable life insurance trusts, qualified personal residence trusts, and sales to defective trusts. Also experienced in charitable estate planning, he handles matters such as charitable remainder trusts, charitable lead trusts, private foundations, and supporting organizations.

Michael's practice also focuses on the income taxation of estates and trusts as well as the compliance and administrative issues facing tax-exempt organizations.

Actively involved in his community, Michael has chaired several development committees for philanthropic and independent educational organizations in the Kansas City area. He was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers® for 2020-2024.

Practice Areas


  • Stanford University School of Law (J.D., 1973)
  • United States Air Force Academy (B.S., 1969)

Legal Background

  • Partner, Husch Blackwell, LLP (2009-2014)
  • Partner, Blackwell Sanders, LLP (2006-2009)
  • Partner, Husch & Eppenberger (1992-2006)
  • Partner, Brown & Thiessen (1979-1992)
  • Judge Advocate General, U.S. Air Force (1974-1979)

Professional Affiliations

  • Fellow, American College of Trust and Estate Counsel
  • Estate Planning Society of Kansas City
  • Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association


  • Missouri Bar
  • State Bar of California

Charitable & Civic Activities

  • The Thomas S. Watson Supporting Foundation
  • The Barstow School
  • Pembroke Hill School
  • The Kansas City Ballet
  • Kansas Wildlife Foundation
  • U.S. Air Force Academy Foundation
  • U.S. Air Force Academy Association of Graduates
  • The Kansas City Chorale