Practice Areas


  • Ohio, 2000
    Michigan, 2007
  • U.S. District Courts:
  •   -Eastern District of Michigan, 2009
      -Northern District of Ohio, 2001
      -Southern District of Ohio, 2003
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of Ohio, 2005


  • University of Toledo, J.D., 1999
  • Wright State University, B.F.A. (Theatre), 1987


“Allegations of professional misconduct can derail a career.  My goal is to address the legal issues in a timely manner so your career is back on track.”

Patrick B. Cavanaugh is a member of Eastman & Smith Ltd. and works in the Firm’s Professional Liability Practice Group.  His 20+ years of litigation experience focuses on defense of professional liability claims. He defends hospitals, physician groups, insurers, doctors, nurses and other health care professionals in medical malpractice matters as well as attorneys and bar associations in cases involving alleged attorney misconduct.  His time as chair of the Toledo Bar Association’s Certified Grievance Committee provided further insights into the issues that precipitate misconduct, which he described in an article for Court House News.

After graduating with a degree in Theatre, Mr. Cavanaugh was employed by an auto company for trade show and public relations events.  He obtained a legal assistant certificate during that time and was thereafter hired by a manufacturing company as a legal assistant.  Mr. Cavanaugh continued his education at the University of Toledo where he earned his law degree.

Mr. Cavanaugh and his wife Leah reside in Sylvania with their son Will.  He also has three grown children and three grandchildren who live in Toledo.  Mr. Cavanaugh enjoys spending his free time with Scouts BSA, where he is the committee chair to his son’s Boy Scout Troop.



Mr. Cavanaugh has over 20 years of experience handling medical and legal professional liability claims in the area of medical and professional liability.  In his practice he:

  • Successfully defended doctors, nurses and hospitals in medical malpractice and wrongful death claims.
  • Is experienced in defending complex “birth trauma” claims.
  • Represents attorneys in ethics defense cases.
  • Represents doctors and nurses in medical and nursing board cases.

Additionally, Mr. Cavanaugh has extensively lectured on obstetrical and medical malpractice issues, as well as attorney ethics issues.  He is a  former chair of the Toledo Bar Association Grievance Committee, and argued before the Ohio Supreme Court in attorney ethics cases, both on behalf of the relator and on behalf of respondent.

Currently, Mr. Cavanaugh is the president of the Society of Ohio Healthcare Attorneys (SOHA), an affiliate of the Ohio Hospital Association (OHA).

Honors & Affiliations

Community/Professional Affiliations

  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Foundation, life fellow, 2023
  • Society of Ohio Health Care Attorneys
    • President 2022 – 2023
    • Vice President, 2020 – 2021
    • Secretary 2018 - 2019
  • Toledo Bar Association
    • Certified Grievance Committee, 2002 - 2014

Honors & Awards

  • Distinguished Attorney from Martindale-Hubbell

Publications & News

Events & Speaking Engagements