James S. Aussem, JD, AEP (Distinguished) is a shareholder in the Cleveland law firm of Cavitch Familo & Durkin, Co., LPA, a former member of its board of directors and former Chair of the Business Practice Group. Jim’s practice is focused on succession planning, mergers and acquisitions, as well as estates and trusts. Jim is a frequent speaker, facilitator, and instructor for many professional organizations on topics such as business succession, buying and selling businesses, estate planning, insurance, trusts and estates. Jim is designated an Accredited Estate Planner with Distinction; AEP® Distinguished by the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils (NAEPC) which inducted him into its Hall of Fame November 17, 2022. Baldwin Wallace University in 2004 presented him with its Distinguished Alumni Award, The Cleveland Chapter of the Society of FSP named him its Financial Service Professional of the Year in 2013 and the Society of FSP, for which Jim served as the national president in 2017-2018, presented him with its Kenneth Black Leadership Award for 2019. Mr. Aussem is AV® Preeminent Rated – by Martindale-Hubbell the leading rating organizations for practicing attorneys and has been elected by his peers every year since 2009 as one of the “Best Lawyers in America for Business” in both Corporate Law and Trusts and Estates.