Joseph M. Saponaro

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Real Estate Attorney in Cleveland, OH

FisherBroyles, LLP
 | 600 Superior Avenue East, Fifth Third Bldg., Suite 1300
Cleveland, OH 44114
Phone: 440-602-5225
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2017 - 2018
Licensed Since: 1999
Practice Areas:
  • Real Estate: Business (70%),
  • Business/Corporate (30%)
Attorney Profile

A partner at FisherBroyles, LLP in Cleveland, Ohio, Joseph M. Saponaro focuses his practice primarily on business counseling and transactions. Serving clients throughout the state, he handles a wide variety of matters, including mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, succession planning, business disputes, contract negotiations, regulatory compliance, entity formation and strategic planning. Mr. Saponaro also has experience with complex real estate transactions, including leasing, financing and development.

In 1986, Mr. Saponaro received a Bachelor of Science in business administration from Bowling Green State University. After spending several years in private industry, he returned to academia and earned a Master of Arts in economics from Cleveland State University in 1996. Mr. Saponaro was subsequently awarded his Juris Doctor by Cleveland-Marshall College of Law in 1999.  Admitted to practice in Ohio and the District of Columbia, Mr. Saponaro is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit. Recognized by his fellow professionals for his strong ethics, Mr. Saponaro has received an AV Preeminent* peer review rating through Martindale-Hubbell.

An active participant in a variety of professional organizations, Mr. Saponaro is a member of the Real Estate Law Section of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association. He is also a member of the American and Ohio State Bar associations, as well as the International Council of Shopping Centers. Mr. Saponaro has served as a judge on the Rocky River Municipal Court, and he is frequently asked by the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association to assist in the training of new attorneys.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Practice Areas

Real Estate (70%)
Business/Corporate (30%)

Real Estate (70%)

Business/Corporate (30%): Business Formation and Planning, Limited Liability Companies, Sub-chapter S Corporations, Contracts, Business Organizations

Focus Areas

Business Formation and Planning, Limited Liability Companies, Sub-chapter S Corporations, Contracts, Business Organizations


Selected to Super Lawyers for 2 yearsbottom-image

Super Lawyers: 2017 - 2018

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About Joseph Saponaro

Admitted: 1999, Ohio

Professional Webpage:

Honors and Awards:

  • Selected by my peers as a Super Lawyer for 2018, Super Lawyers, 2018
  • Selected by my peers as a Super Lawyer for 2017, Super Lawyers, 2017
  • Selected by my peers as one of the Top Rated Lawyers Cleveland Legal Leaders and AV Preeminent Martindale Hubbell Lawyer Ratings, 2016
  • Top Rated Lawyers Cleveland Legal Leaders, AV Preeminent Martindale Hubbell Lawyer Ratings, 2015
  • Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity
  • Outstanding Fellow-Leadership Academy Cleveland State University-Levin College of Urban Studies
  • Named to ALM/Matrindale-Hubbell's 2014 list of Cleveland's Top Rated Lawyers

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • Chair of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association's Annual Real Estate law Institute, 2017
  • Chaired the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association's 38th Annual Real Estate law Institute, 2016
  • Justian Forum
  • International Counsel of Shopping Centers, Member
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Ohio State Bar Association, Member
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, Member and Real Estate Law Institute Committee Member
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit, 2001
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Ohio, 1999
  • District of Columbia, 2001
  • Ohio, 1999
  • District of Columbia Bar Association
  • Cleveland-Marshall Law Alumni Association, Honorary Trustee and Life Member
  • International Council of Shopping Centers
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association

Pro bono/Community Service:

  • Cleveland Roots, serving on the Board of Trustees, 2015
  • Expungement Clinic-Legal Aid Society
  • Saint Ignatius High School Father's Club
  • Fairmount Center for the Arts
  • Legal Aid Society--Expungement Clinic

Scholarly Lectures and Writings:

  • New Lawyer Training, Cleveland-Marshall Law Alumni Association
  • Real Estate Law Institute, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, 2004 - 2015
  • Choosing the Right Entity for Your Business, Builders Exchange Magazine, 2003
  • The CMBA Real Estate Law Institute, Speaker on various real estate matters.
  • New Lawyer Training, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
  • The Public Trust Doctrine and Submerged Lake Erie Lands in Ohio , Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Journal
  • Determining the Immunity "Measuring Stick": The Impact of the Health Care Quality Improvement Act and Antitrust Laws on Immunity Aspects of Granting Privileges to Physician Assistants, 47-1 Clev. St. L. Rev., 115


  • Represented aggregate supplier in obtaining over $500,000 in appropriation matter regarding the I-90 Inner Belt Bridge project
  • Represent client with respect to multiple joint venture development of 80/20 residential projects involving taxable and tax-exempt bonds, low income housing tax credits and credit enhancement
  • Represented client in sale of industrial portfolio in Dallas, Texas
  • Represented client in sale of $300-million office building in Jersey City, New Jersey, including defeasance of securitized loan
  • Represented commercial landlords in 28 leasing transactions with national and regional tenants
  • Represented restaurant franchisees in leasing 30 in-line and outparcel locations in 8 states as one of only three approved firms nationwide
  • Represented modal transportation company in obtaining $5-million grant from Ohio Department of Transportation

Other Outstanding Achievements:

  • Elected Council President of Mayfield Village Council by fellow Council Members 2016, 2017, 2018
  • Acting Judge, Rocky River Municipal Court

Educational Background:

  • Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio M.A. in Economics, 1996
  • Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio B.S.B.A., Finance, 1986

Industry Groups

  • Automotive
  • Bars & Restaurants
  • Construction
  • Energy And Natural Resources
  • Entertainment
  • Physicians & Other Health Professionals
  • Real Estate
  • Transporation
  • Trucking
Office Location for Joseph M. Saponaro

600 Superior Avenue East
Fifth Third Bldg., Suite 1300
Cleveland, OH 44114

Phone: 440-602-5225


Joseph M. Saponaro:

Last Updated: 4/10/2018

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