Judge Stuart A. Friedman
(216) 348-4035
On Common Pleas Bench Since:
. .
(216) 443-8505
Linda M. Graves (216) 443-8708
Courtroom Assistant:
John Thorne (216) 348-4018
Staff Attorney:
Marcella A. Distad (216) 443-8618
Admitted to Bar:
High School:
Shaker Heights High School
University of Pennsylvania, University of London
Law School:
University of Michigan
Legal Experience:
Law Clerk, U. S. District Court (1970-1972); Public Defender Office (1973-1975); Burke, Haber & Berick (1975-1977); Asst. Director of Law, City of Cleveland (1977-1987).

General:Favors Alternative Resolution (including Arbitration and Mediation) when appropriate.

Pre-Trials: Bailiff or Staff Attorney handles case management conference, although judge is available as needed. Judge handles pre-trial conference. Requires lead trial counsel and parties to be present at final pre-trial conference. Generally does not allow participation by phone. Deadlines, merits, and possibility of settlement are discussed at case management conferences.

Motion Practice: Staff Attorney handles filing deadlines and reviews pending motions with Judge. Discovery disputes addressed by motion only. Scheduling conflicts to be presented by motion unless insufficient time to do so. Counsel should provide chambers with copies of motions and briefs. Only allows oral argument on motion as required by Civil Rules. Allows reply and surreply briefs if good cause is shown. Motions in limine should be in writing and submitted 14 days before trial.

Discovery: Requires a scheduling order. Counsel should agree upon discovery schedule at case management conference. Discovery disputes addressed by motion only.

Settlement Conference: Holds settlement conference upon joint request of counsel and morning of trial. Requires lead trial counsel, parties, and individual with settlement authority to be present. Always participates in settlement negotiations. Does not allow participation by phone, except upon motion and showing of hardship.

Calendaring and Continuances: Motion by party or joint motion is needed for first continuance and extension of discovery. Does not generally allow extension of discovery without court approval, particularly where it may impact upon dispositive motion, final pre-trial or trial dates. Motion to continue trial must be endorsed by party and otherwise comply with SUP.R.36.

Trials: Exhibit list should be given to court reporter prior to morning of trial if feasible. Pre-trial statements and trial briefs should be submitted 1 day before final pre-trial/trial. Present jury instructions electronically in either MS Word or PDF format. No special rule for videotape testimony, but objections index needs to be filed prior to trial. Rules on objections to videotape morning of trial. Will not allow exhibits in opening statement. Client and counsel may sit at the trial table, others by prior arrangement. Court will ask general questions during voir dire. No arbitrary time limit on voir dire. Will allow jurors to take notes. If counsel consent, will allow jurors to pose written questions during trial. Permits jurors to talk to attorney after case. Requires counsel to stand while addressing court and witnesses; can stand wherever they want, but judge discourages wandering.