Dave C. Blickenstaff is the leader of Schiff Hardin’s national trust and estate litigation practice. He helps beneficiaries vindicate their rights. He advises individual fiduciaries in discharging their duties. And he represents trust companies in their most significant and sensitive cases, including “rescue” situations in which he is called upon to assist or replace prior counsel.
Dave is a vigorous advocate. But he knows his role is to solve problems, not to add fuel to the fire. Calm and no-nonsense, he defuses difficult situations while making the strongest case for his clients. He has applied this approach successfully in scores of trust disputes, contested estates, and related matters.
According to Chambers USA, clients describe Dave as “wonderful to work with, incredibly responsive,” “very practical, and intent on solving issues,” and “very thoughtful, very knowledgeable about trust law and … just has a really well thought-out way of dealing with difficult clients, lowering the temperature and getting to the right resolution.”
Recognized as a leader in his field, Dave is regularly invited to speak about topics relating to fiduciary litigation and managing fiduciary risk. He also serves as a mediator in complex trust and estate disputes.
Dave is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), whose members are elected by their peers based on their skill, integrity, and contributions to the profession. He is an active member of ACTEC’s Fiduciary Litigation Committee.
Dave chairs Schiff Hardin’s Law Student Recruitment Committee and serves on the firm’s Diversity Committee.
- Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, J.D., 1994
- Princeton University, A.B., 1990
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Trial Bar)
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
- American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), Fellow; Fiduciary Litigation Committee, Member
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