International Society of Primerus Law Firms

Cleveland Attorney
J. Paul Fidler

Phone: 216.696.4200


Languages: English

Paul Fidler joined the firm in 1996 and became a Partner in 2003. His practice emphasizes estate planning and administration; trust administration; income taxation of estates, trusts and individuals; planning for charitable gifts and foundations; and business succession planning.

Paul is a frequent speaker and author on a wide range of estate planning topics. Paul has a particularly strong expertise in qualified retirement plans and IRAs, which often are a client’s most valuable asset. In 2012, while Chair of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (CMBA) Estate Planning, Probate & Trust Law Section, Paul had the opportunity to coordinate and host the “Hot Topics for Estate Planners” seminar. His presentation at the CMBA Estate Planning Institute entitled, “Spendthrift Provisions: Wouldn’t You Like to be a Spendthrift Too?” was also published in the Probate Law Journal of Ohio.

Paul is an active member of the Broadview Road Church of Christ, where he currently serves as Treasurer, a Trustee, and on various service-oriented committees.

Paul enjoys playing soccer in adult soccer leagues. Paul lives in Olmsted Falls with his wife, Katie, and two children.

Practice Areas

  • Business Succession Planning
  • Charitable Planning
  • Estate Administration
  • Estate Planning and Probate
  • Family Foundations
  • Probate Litigation
  • Retirement Distribution Planning
  • Taxation
  • Trust Administration
  • Wealth Transfer


  • Michael E. Moritz College of Law, 1996, J.D.
    • Order of the Coif with Honors
  • The Pennsylvania State University, 1993, B.S.
    • With honors and high distinction

Admissions & Associations

  • State of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. Tax Court
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Member, Ohio State Bar Association
  • Member, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
  • Chairman, Estate Planning, Probate, and Trust Law Section of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, 2011-2012

Awards & Honors

  • Accredited Estate Planner®
  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America© (2016-present) for work in:
    • Closely Held Companies and Family Businesses Law
    • Litigation – Trusts and Estates 
    • Trusts & Estates

Community Activities

  • Member, Treasurer and a Trustee, Broadview Road Church of Christ
  • Board Member, West Haven Foundation (Supporting Organization of Welcome House)
  • Advisory Board, Circle Health Service (Formerly The Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland)

Recent Articles & Presentations

  • Who Cares About Being Secure? Estate Planning with Retirement Plan Assets in A Rapidly Changing Legal Environment,
    • Probate Law Journal of Ohio, May/June 2020
  • Guest Lecturer at Case Western Reserve University School of Law
  • There’s No Place Like Home…Ohio Becomes One of the Nation’s Top Destinations for Asset Protection Planning
  • Spendthrift Provisions: Wouldn’t You Like to be a Spendthrift Too?
  • Paul has spoken to various continuing legal education, professional, and consumer-oriented groups regarding estate planning, estate and trust administration, and tax topics
  • The Grapes of Roth: Conversion to a Roth IRA in 2010and Beyond — Sweet Nectar or Sour Grapes
  • Roth Conversion: Wealth Transfer, Taxes and Timing

Contact This Firm

Schneider Smeltz Spieth Bell LLP

1375 East 9th Street
Suite 900
Cleveland, OH 44114
United States

Law Firm Contact: David M. Lenz

Tel: 216.696.4200

Fax: 216.696.7303



Member Since: 2005

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