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Joseph A. Manno

Joe Manno defends companies against claims alleging federal and state statutory liability, product liability, and general negligence in repeat, mass tort, and individual high stakes litigation.

In his hospitality practice, Joe serves on the national and trial counsel teams defending international hotel franchisees and franchisors in cases alleging liability involving alleged human and sex trafficking. These claims often require the defense of allegations based on negligence (premises liability), Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO), and the Trafficking Victims Reauthorization Act. Joe also leads national counsel teams defending personal injury claims related to escalators and elevators in hotels, casinos, arenas, and shopping centers throughout the country.

In his product liability practice, Joe has defended a wide array of products, including snowmobiles, golf cars, medical devices, HVAC equipment, refrigerant press fittings, electrical equipment, paints, electronic cigarettes and vaporizers, hose fittings, and chemicals.

Though Joe has deep experience in all facets of litigation, he is known for his ability to quickly develop expertise in product engineering and design, science, medicine, and specialized statutory frameworks, making him a key strategic partner on numerous and varied national counsel teams. For repeat litigation, Joe has a heightened appreciation for the value of a consistent but nimble national strategy in case work-up, discovery (both offensive and defensive), and legal issues and implements those strategies through effective (and winning) trial themes. Joe devotes over half his practice to federal courts across the country.

When not traveling on client matters, Joe and his wife Natalie have their hands full with their two young children, who frequently try to make appearances on Zoom meetings.

The University of Akron School of Law (J.D., summa cum laude, 2014); Akron Law Review, Articles Editor
The University of Akron (B.S., magna cum laude, 2011); University Honors Scholar
State Admissions
Ohio, 2014
Pennsylvania, 2020
Federal Admissions
United States District Court, Northern District of Ohio
United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio
  • Trial team member in two cases successfully resolved immediately prior to trial alleging RICO, negligence, and TVPRA claims against a hotel brand and operator
  • Obtained dismissal and affirmation on appeal for a national elevator manufacturer and servicer
  • Second chair jury trial to verdict defending a fire case on behalf of an equipment manufacturer alleged to have caused a fire (hung jury), resulting in a favorable settlement
  • Trial team member in a Pennsylvania mesothelioma jury trial resulting in a complete defense verdict (presented oral and written evidentiary arguments to the court and assisted in expert cross examinations and general trial research and support)
  • Successfully defended Jones Act claims brought by the client’s former employee
  • Defended to resolution more than 100 Longshore claims against a Great Lakes vessel owner
  • Oversaw the defense of thousands of mass tort claims across the country against an HVAC manufacturer as a member of its national coordinating counsel team (led product training, motion strategy, expert development, and all facets of exit strategies)
  • Obtained summary judgments in disputed liability cases in state and federal courts in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Montana, and Washington (led briefing, arguments, and strategy)

speaking engagements

  • “Ethical Emailing,” Tucker Ellis Ohio Professional Conduct Program, Cleveland, Ohio (December 2015)


  • Ohio Super Lawyers Rising Stars® (2020–2024)
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Association