Daniela Paez is a trusted litigator and adviser who focuses her practice on complex commercial, financial services and fiduciary disputes. She represents a diverse set of clients ranging from multinational companies and major financial institutions to closely held businesses, and individuals.

Daniela helps her clients navigate a wide range of disputes involving business torts, breach of contract, financial services and securities litigation, and fiduciary disputes. She represents clients in federal and state trial and appellate courts across the country, as well as in mediation, arbitration, and international disputes. Clients value Daniela for her attention to detail and creative approach.

Daniela is a skilled legal writer and has special experience in appellate advocacy. She has served as primary drafter and argued dozens of motions and appellate briefs in courts throughout the US, including multiple successful dispositive motions and appeals before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of Ohio.

Recognized for her talent, Daniela has been named to Bloomberg Law’s list of The 40 Under 40, Benchmark Litigation’s 40 and Under Hot List, the National LGBT Bar Association’s list of Best LGBTQ+ Lawyers Under 40, the Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America list for Commercial Litigation, and she has been recognized by Benchmark Litigation as a Future Star, among other honors.

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  • Won unanimous reversal from the Supreme Court of Alabama of denial of motions to compel arbitration of claims by seven customers who alleged that their signatures on the account agreements containing the arbitration provisions had been forged. Successfully argued the customers were equitably estopped from avoiding arbitration because their claims depended on the existence of the account agreements containing the arbitration clauses. The Alabama Supreme Court agreed and rejected the plaintiffs’ attempt to avoid arbitration based on their forgery allegations.
  • Won summary judgment on all claims asserted against a major insurance company by an insured alleging that her policy was improperly terminated after she was allegedly misled into taking out loans against the cash value of her life insurance policy, and the trial court’s summary judgment ruling was affirmed by the New Mexico Court of Appeals.
  • Served as the lead associate on a team representing Plain Local School District in a successful constitutional challenge of an Ohio statute that allowed residents of certain communities to more easily change their assigned school district, eliminating preexisting statutory safeguards meant to prevent racial and socioeconomic segregation, and drafted key filings including winning summary judgment briefs.
  • Defended a multinational natural resources company, as part of a litigation team, in a US$100 million breach of contract and tort action, assisting in all phases of litigation and appeal, and developing the defense strategy.
  • Defended a retail pharmacy in an unfair competition and trade secrets matter, and, after obtaining transfer to the Eastern District of Michigan for lack of personal jurisdiction, drafted a motion to dismiss that resulted in a dismissal with prejudice of most of the plaintiff’s claims.
  • Represented a self-directed individual retirement account (IRA) custodian in a putative class action alleging aiding and assisting a Ponzi scheme in violation of the Ohio Securities Act, and served as the primary drafter of the appellate briefs in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of Ohio, which resulted in a seminal decision from the Supreme Court on a certified question of first impression on the reach of secondary liability under the Ohio Securities Act.
  • Defended a national bank in litigation alleging breach of fiduciary duty and violations of the Ohio Uniform Fiduciary Act, and obtained summary judgment on all claims in a decision that was affirmed by the Fifth District Court of Appeals.
  • Defended a 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.
  • Defended major financial institutions in customer disputes, in Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration, 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.


  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law, J.D., John Wragg Kellogg Prize, Klatsky Fellow, 2013
  • San Francisco State University, B.A., cum laude, 2009


  • Ohio, 2013


  • U.S. Ct. of App., Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist. of Ohio
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., S. Dist. of Ohio
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., E. Dist. of Michigan
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist. of Illinois

Memberships & Affiliations

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


  • English
  • Spanish
  • Named a Future Star by Benchmark Litigation (2022-2024)
  • Named to Benchmark Litigation’s 40 and Under Hot List (2023)
  • Recognized in Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for Commercial Litigation as well as Banking and Finance Litigation (2021-2024)
  • Listed as a Rising Star by Ohio Super Lawyers (2017-2023)
  • Recipient of the Trailblazer Award by the Case Western Reserve University Latinx Law Students Association (2023)
  • Named to the They’ve Got Next: The 40 Under 40 list by Bloomberg Law (2021)
  • Selected as a Best LGBTQ+ Lawyer Under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association (2021)
  • Recipient of the Forty Under 40 award by Crain’s Cleveland Business (2018)

  • Author, “UCC Article 4A for Litigators,” Westlaw Practical Law, Thomson Reuters, October 2023.
  • Co-author, “One Subject Rule Strategy Can Defeat Dangerous State Laws,” Law360 Access to Justice, September 2021
  • Speaker, “From the Trenches of Fiduciary Litigation: Exculpatory Clauses (and Other Key Defenses Available to Trustees),” CMBA Estate Planning, Probate & Trust Law Section, February 2019

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