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Joseph M. Ferraro, Esq.

Director, Family Wealth

Joe Ferraro has an extensive background as a trust and estate lawyer, with a practice focused on estate planning, trust and estate administration, asset protection, charitable giving, and estate, gift, and income taxation. 

In his role as Director of Western Reserve Trust Company’s Family Wealth team, he coordinates legal, tax, and financial matters for high-net-worth and UHNW individuals and family groups. He frequently collaborates with clients’ attorneys, accountants, and investment advisors to develop and implement sophisticated wealth and estate planning strategies. He also assists WRTC’s Trust Administration team by providing guidance on trust and estate laws, tax matters, and assessing business and fiduciary risk. During his career, Joe has been a regular speaker and author on these topics and an active member of his local bar associations. Joe previously worked as an attorney at Tucker Ellis LLP in Cleveland, Ohio in the Estates, Trusts & Probate practice group.

Joe and his wife, Calli, live in Concord Township with their two sons. He enjoys cooking, traveling, music, meticulous record-keeping, and cheering on Cleveland’s sports teams with friends and family.


  • Miami University (Bachelor of Science, Accountancy & Business Legal Studies, 2010)
  • The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law (Juris Doctor, 2013)

Bar Admissions

  • Ohio (2013)
  • Florida (2015)

Professional Organizations

  • Ohio State Bar Association – Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section, Member
    • Law School Outreach Committee, Member
    • Uniform Directed Trust Act Committee, Member
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association - Estate Planning, Probate and Trust Law Section, Member
  • Estate Planning Council of Cleveland, Member
  • Florida Bar – Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section, Member

Recent Speaking Engagements

  • Beyond the Casebook: Presenting to Law Students About Careers in Estate Planning, The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) Summer Meeting, Legal Education Committee Meeting, Washington, D.C. (June 2023)
  • Estate Planning: The Who, What, Why, and How, Case Western Reserve University School of Law, Wills & Trusts Class (Fall Semester 2019 - 2023)
  • Estate Planning and Charitable Giving, Planned Giving Breakfast, Cleveland Metroparks and Cleveland Zoological Society, Cleveland, Ohio (March 2019)
  • Ohio Law Update, 44th Annual Estate Planning Institute, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, Cleveland, Ohio (October 2017)

Recent Publications

  • Creating Flexible Dynasty Trusts for an Uncertain Future, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Journal (June 2022)
  • Charitable Giving with Retirement Accounts & the SECURE Act, Bits & Paces, Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center (Winter 2020)
  • The Postnuptial Agreement Renaissance—Can Ohio Emerge From The Dark Ages?, Probate Law Journal of Ohio, Volume 29, Issue 6 (July/August 2019)
  • Tips on Maximizing Benefits of a Donor-Advised Fund, Crain’s Cleveland Business (October 2019)
  • SLATs Offer Opportunity to Save on Estate Taxes, Crain’s Cleveland Business (November 2018)
  • Changes to Custodial Accounts for Minors: Keeping the Champagne on Ice, Crain’s Cleveland Business (November 2017)


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