Daniela Paez


Daniela’s practice focuses on complex, commercial, banking, fiduciary, and broker-dealer litigation. She represents a diverse set of clients, ranging from individuals, LLCs, and closely-held corporations to large, multinational companies and major financial institutions in state and federal courts in and outside of Ohio, in mediation, and in arbitration before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Daniela is involved in all phases of trial preparation and case management, including motion practice, discovery, taking and defending depositions, preparing witnesses, arguing motions, and appellate briefing. She also handles immigration matters, including employment- and education-based immigration and enforcement. Daniela is fluent in Spanish and has basic knowledge of Portuguese.

In law school, Daniela served as an extern at the General Division of the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, in the chambers of Judge Stuart A. Friedman.

Education & Admissions


  • San Francisco State University

    (B.A., cum laude, 2009)
    Dean’s Honor List 2008, 2009

  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law

    (J.D., 2013)
    Dean’s Honor List 2010, 2011 Klatsky Fellowship Recipient, John Wragg Kellogg Prize


  • State of Ohio
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois



  • Represented a school district in successfully challenging the constitutionality of a controversial state law that allowed residents of certain Ohio communities to more easily change their assigned school district despite the risk of racial segregation among affected students (Plain Local School District Board of Education v. Mike DeWine, No. 2:19-CV-5086, 2020 WL 5521310 (S.D.OH Sept 11, 2020).
  • Represented self-directed IRA custodian in putative class action alleging aiding and assisting a Ponzi scheme in violation of the Ohio Securities Act, which resulted in a seminal decision from the Ohio Supreme Court on a certified question of first impression on the reach of secondary liability under the Ohio Securities Act (Boyd v. Kingdom Trust Co., 154 Ohio St. 3d 196 (2018)).
  • Represented executor, as part of litigation team, and prevailed at the Ohio Supreme Court in precedent setting matter regarding the requirements for the presentation of a claim against a decedent’s estate. (Wilson v. Lawrence, 150 Ohio St.3d 368, 2017-Ohio-1410).
  • Defended national bank in litigation alleging breach of fiduciary duty and violations of the Ohio Uniform Fiduciary Act; obtained summary judgment on all claims in a decision that was affirmed by the Fifth District Court of Appeals. (Tsepas v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, NA, 2017-Ohio-1272 (Ohio 5th Dist. Ct. App.)).
  • Defended major financial institutions in customer disputes in arbitration before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and in state court, including defending against claims under state and federal securities and consumer protection laws, common law fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and similar allegations.
  • Represented corporate fiduciaries in defense of claims for breach of fiduciary duty, breach of trust, and in actions for removal.
  • Successfully represented a client at a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement bond hearing after the client had been detained due to the expiration of her F-1 Student Visa.
  • Assisted international students with applications for work authorization through F-1 Optional Practical Training and the H-1B process on behalf of numerous corporations in Silicon Valley.
  • Advised international students on securing F-1 Student Visas and the immigration process, including working to change their immigration statuses once they were in the United States.
  • Defended multinational natural resources company, as part of litigation team, in $100 million breach of contract and tort action, assisting in all phases of litigation and appeal, and developing defense strategy.
  • Defended retail pharmacy in unfair competition and trade secrets matter, and after obtaining transfer to the Eastern District of Michigan for lack of personal jurisdiction, drafted motion to dismiss that was granted, in part, dismissing with prejudice significant number of the plaintiff’s claims. (Prescription Supply, Inc., et al. v. Moussa “Mark” Musa, et al., Case No. 2:16-cv-12070 (E.D. Mich. February 27, 2017)).
  • Defended self-directed IRA custodian in numerous cases in and outside of Ohio against customer claims under state and federal securities and consumer protection laws, along with tort and contract claims.

Publications & Presentations

Client Alerts


  • From the Trenches of Fiduciary Litigation: Exculpatory Clauses (and Other Key Defenses),” Ulmer Webinar (April 2019)
  • “From the Trenches of Fiduciary Litigation: Exculpatory Clauses (and Other Key Defenses Available to Trustees),” CMBA Estate Planning, Probate & Trust Law Section (February 2019)
  • “When Waving Bye-Bye to a Bad Advisor is Not Enough: A Firm’s Potential Liability for a Former Advisor’s Criminal Conduct,” Ulmer Hot Topics in Financial Services & Securities Litigation Seminar (November 2018)



  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Association


  • Stella Maris, Inc. (Board of Directors 2017-present; Board Secretary 2019-present)
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association The 3Rs – Rights, Responsibilities, and Realities Program (High School Classroom Volunteer 2017-present)



  • The National LGBT Bar Association “Best LGBTQ+ Lawyers Under 40” Award Recipient (2021)
  • Named to the Ohio Super Lawyers Rising Stars list (2017-2021)
  • Named to the Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch, Commercial Litigation (2021)
  • Crain’s Cleveland Business “Forty Under 40” Award Recipient (2018)