Patrick J. Perotti graduated from Cleveland State University with a B.A. in 1977. He was awarded his law degree, cum laude, from Cleveland Marshall College of Law in 1982.
He specializes in commercial litigation, civil rights and employment discrimination litigation, consumer benefit, and class action practice. He has frequently appeared before the Supreme Court of Ohio, and as counsel in litigation in state and federal courts throughout the country.
Mr. Perotti is a certified employment law specialist. Less than one percent of attorneys in Ohio hold this certification. He has successfully represented employment plaintiffs in the following lead cases in the Supreme Court: Mauzy v. Kelly Services (1996) 75 Ohio St.3d 578 which allows circumstantial evidence to be used as direct proof of employment discrimination; Kulch v. Structural Fibers (1997), 78 Ohio St.3d 134 which established a Greeley claim in Ohio for whistleblowing; and in Federal Court,Stanley v .The Lawson Company, 993 F.S. 1084 (N.D. Ohio 1997) which analyzes sex and religion discrimination standards under Title VII.
Mr. Perotti handles wage and hour collective actions in Ohio and across the United States. These suits challenge the failure of employers to pay overtime and other wages required by state and federal laws.
Mr. Perotti's other area of primary concentration is class actions, handling class litigation throughout Ohio and nationally. Some of his lead cases include: Rosette v. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc.(2005), 105 Ohio St.3d 296; Santos v. Ohio Bur. of Workers' Comp. (2004), 101 Ohio St.3d 1492; Martin v. Grange Mut. Ins. Co. (2001), 143 Ohio App.3d 332; Waeschle v. Oakland County Med. Exam'r, 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 87399 (E.D. Mich. Oct. 29, 2008). As class counsel in numerous suits, Mr. Perotti was described by the court as having provided "exceptional representation for the class members. Taking into consideration the complexity of the legal issues at hand and the result achieved by class counsel, it is clear to the court that the legal representation in this case was superb."
In 2010, Mr. Perotti was named to the exclusive ranks of the top 75 plaintiff trial lawyers in the United States. The group, called 'Trial Lawyer Kingpins,' was chosen in a survey of defense attorneys throughout the country to identify 'the best plaintiff trial attorneys in terms of experience and influence.'
The successes of class litigation handled by Mr. Perotti won him national Public Justice 2007 Trial Lawyer of the Year finalist, with settlements totaling over $120 million
Mr. Perotti's class action practice has focused extensively on doing justice not only for class members, but also for the broader community. Through the innovative use of an obscure legal doctrine known as cy pres, Mr. Perotti has directed over $18 million in unclaimed class settlement monies to charities and nonprofits. His distribution in July 2008 of nearly $14 million from a single case was the largest cy pres of its kind in U.S. history. Monies directed from Mr. Perotti's cases helped charities dealing with hunger, housing, clothing and shelter, drug and alcohol addiction, disease prevention, adoption assistance, special needs education, handicap assistance, and a variety of others. The recipients have included Muscular Dystrophy Association, Habitat for Humanity, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, MADD, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Legal Aid Society, Leukemia Society, Boys and Girls Clubs, and dozens of others.
Mr. Perotti is a frequent lecturer at state and national conferences on employment law and is often quoted by the media on those subjects. He has been interviewed on employment law and class action matters by countless newspapers, and local and national radio and television shows, such as The New York Times, The American Lawyers, Fox & Friends New York City, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, and others. His many television appearances, both local and national, focus on protection of the individual and protection of persons considered most vulnerable in society.
Mr. Perotti is a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association, the Ohio Employment Lawyers Association, the Ohio Bar Association (member of the Federal Courts and Practice Committee), the Federal Bar Association, the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association., and the Lake County Bar Association.
He was a member of the Governor's Ohio Adoption Task Force from 1990 to 1992 and was appointed chairman of the Governor's Ohio Adoption Commission in 1992. Mr. Perotti is the staff counsel of the Ohio Right to Life Society.
He is the author of a comprehensive treatise on the ADA, the FMLA, and the interaction between those laws and workers' compensation programs. He received the American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law Award for significant contributions to the advancement of law on the Family and Medical Leave Act (2006).
Mr. Perotti is licensed to practice in the following courts: Federal District Court, Northern District of Ohio, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, U.S. Tax Court, U.S. Claims Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, U.S. Court of International Trade, U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for The Armed Forces.; U.S. District Court of Idaho (pro hac vice); U.S. District Court of Pennsylvania (western division) (pro hac vice); U.S. District Court of West Virginia (southern division) (pro hac vice); U.S. District Court of South Carolina (Aiken division) (pro hac vice); U.S. District Court of Michigan (Eastern District) (pro hac vice); District Court of Minnesota (4th District) (pro hac vice); and Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois (pro hac vice).
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