David Cohen

Appointing Judges

  • Honorable John Adams, United States District Court (Akron)
  • Honorable Ann Aldrich, United States District Court (deceased) (Cleveland)
  • Honorable Christopher Boyko, United States District Court (Cleveland)
  • Honorable Timothy L. Brooks, United States District Court (Fayetteville, Arkansas)
  • Honorable James Carr, United States District Court (Toledo)
  • Honorable Sharon Johnson Coleman, United States District Court (Chicago)
  • Honorable David Dowd, United States District Court (deceased) (Akron)
  • Honorable Richard Gergel, United States District Court (Charleston, SC)
  • Honorable Nathaniel Gorton, United States District Court (Boston)
  • Honorable Kathleen McDonald O’Malley, Federal Circuit Court of Appeals (Washington, DC)
  • Honorable Solomon Oliver, Jr., United States District Court (Cleveland)
  • Honorable Sul Ozerden, United States District Court (Gulfport)
  • Honorable Thomas Parker, United States District Court (Cleveland)
  • Honorable Dan Aaron Polster, United States District Court (Cleveland)
  • Honorable Julie Robinson, United States District Court (Kansas City)
  • Honorable Mary Rowland, United States District Court (Chicago)
  • Honorable Arthur Schwab, United States District Court (Pittsburgh)
  • Honorable Kathryn Vratil, United States District Court (Kansas City)
  • Honorable Jack Zouhary, United States District Court (Toledo)

Special Master Appointments


  • In re National Prescription Opiate Litig., MDL no. 2804 (National Health Crisis)
  • In re Aqueous Film-Forming Foams Prod. Liab. Litig., MDL No. 2873 (Mass Tort)
  • In re Polyurethane Foam Antitrust Litig., MDL No. 2196 (Antitrust)
  • In re Oral Sodium Phosphate Prod. Liab. Litig., MDL no. 2066 (Mass Tort)
  • In re Whirlpool Corp. Front-Loading Washer Prod. Liab. Litig., MDL no. 2001 (Consumer Class Action)
  • In re Community Bank of N. Virginia Mortgage Lending Pracs., MDL No. 1674 (W.D. Pa.) (Truth in Lending Class Action)
  • In re Welding Fumes Prod. Liab. Litig., MDL no. 1535 (Mass Tort)
  • In re Sulzer Hip Implant Prod. Liab. Litig., MDL no. 1401 (Mass Tort) (Senior Law Clerk)


  • Murphy v. Gospel for Asia, Inc., no. 17-CV-1535 (W.D. Ark.) (Forensic Accounting Class Action)
  • Sibley v. Sprint Nextel Corp., no. 08-CV-2063 (D. Kan.) (National Employment Class Action)
  • Harlow v. Sprint Nextel Corp., no. 08-CV-2222 (D. Kan.) (National Employment Class Action)
  • In re Sears Front-Load Washer Prod. Liab. Litig., no. 06-CV-7023 (N.D. Ill.) (National Consumer Class Action)
  • Massachusetts v. E*Trade Access, Inc., no. 03-CV-11206 (D. Mass) (ADA Class Action)
  • Howe v. City of Akron, no. 06-cv-02779 (N.D. Ohio) (1983 Discrimination Class Action)
  • Bland v. PNC Bank, N.A., no. 15-CV-1042 (W.D. Pa.) (FLSA Class Action)
  • Reinig v. RBS Citizens, N.A., no. 15-CV-1541 (W.D. Pa.) (FLSA Class Action)
  • Stewart v. Anchor Drilling Fluids, USA, Inc., no. 16-CV-1372 (W.D. Pa.) (FLSA Class Action)
  • Williford v. Rice Energy, Inc., no. 17-CV-945 (W.D. Pa.) (FLSA Class Action)
  • Woloszyn v. Patriot Drilling Fluids, no. 17-CV-1076 (W.D. Pa.) (FLSA Class Action)
  • Serrette v. Patriot Drilling Fluids, no. 17-CV-914 (W.D. Pa. (FLSA Class Action)


  • United States v. Black, no. 16-CR-20032 (D. Kan.) (Sixth Amendment and Attorney-Client Privilege)


  • Snap-On Bus. Solns. v. Hyundai Motor America, no. 07-CV-1961 (N.D. Ohio) (Patent and Indemnity)
  • A.R. Arena Products, Inc v. Grayling Industries, Inc., no. 11-CV-1911 (N.D. Ohio) (Patent)


  • Rover Pipeline LLC v. Rohrs, no. 17-CV-225 (N.D. Ohio) (Federal Eminent Domain Class Compensation)
  • Hutchens v. Abbot Labs., Inc., no. 11-CV-176 (N.D. Ohio) (Pharmaceutical Product Liability)
  • Columbia Gas Transm. LLC v. Booth, no. 16-CV-1418 (N.D. Ohio) (Federal Eminent Domain Class Compensation)
  • Universal Surveillance Corp. v. Checkpoint Systems, Inc., no. 11-CV-1755 (N.D. Ohio) (Antitrust)
  • Overcash Pipeline, LLC v. Shaw, no. 16-CV-785 (Computer Forensic Discovery in Business Dispute)
  • EEOC v. Spitzer Management, Inc., no. 06-CV-02337 (N.D. Ohio) (Employment Discrimination)
  • Sterling Jewelers, Inc. v. Zales Corp., no. 12-CV-2823 (N.D. Ohio) (Lanham Act)
  • C.B. Fleet Co. v. Colony Specialty Ins. Co., no. 11-CV-375 (N.D. Ohio) (Insurance Contract & Bad Faith)
  • Baxter v. Lincoln Electric Co., no. 08-WF-17037 (N.D. Ohio) (Product Liability)
  • Banford v. Aldrich Chemical Co., Inc., no. 2003-CV-8704 (Ohio Ct. Common Pleas) (Mass Tort Explosion)


  • Overseeing and resolving all discovery and e-discovery issues.
  • Ruling on privilege issues.
  • Negotiating Settlement Agreements between plaintiffs, defendants, and insurers (see example comments from parties).
  • Designing claims administration processes to pay settlement class.
  • Serving as appellate reviewer of claimant settlement awards.
  • Creating protocols and entering common benefit attorney fee awards (see examples).
  • Monitoring and addressing ethical concerns.
  • Monitoring compliance with Court-ordered injunctive relief.
  • Drafting opinions for Judicial signature, ranging from pre-trial global Daubert issues, to summary judgment motions, to post-trial, case-specific JNOV motions.
  • Coordinating federal and state-court litigation.
  • Ruling on motions in limine.
  • Presiding over Markman hearings and construing disputed patent terms (see examples).
  • Assisting Judges in courtroom during bellwether trials.


  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
    • Court-Approved ADR Mediator
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Pennsylvania
    • Court-Approved ADR Neutral – Mediator, Arbitrator, Special Master
  • Academy of Court-Appointed Masters
    • President Emeritus
    • Member, Board of Directors
    • Charter Member
  • Babson College / Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Entrepreneurial Curriculum
    • Invited Scholar, Graduate
  • American College of E-Neutrals
    • Member, Board of Directors
    • Charter Member
  • Association of Certified E-Discovery Specialists
    • Invited Member, Certification Committee
    • Charter Class, Certified E-Discovery Specialist
  • The Sedona Conference
    • Core Work Group Member, Mass Torts & Punitive Damages, 2008 – present
    • E-Discovery Dispute Resolution Program For Special Masters & Mediators
  • Duke Law School Center for Judicial Studies
    • Treatise Contributor, Class Action Settlement Guidelines and Best Practices
  • Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation
    • Assisting the Honorable William S. Duffey, Jr. with design and content of private Intra-Net resource website for MDL Transferee Judges
  • American Inns of Court
    • Member, 1992 – present
    • Program Committee Member
    • Membership Committee Co-chair
    • Co-authored a six-part program, entitled “When a Lawyer and Her Client are Both Indicted,” which is now listed in the National American Inns of Court Program Library Catalog.
  • Federal Bar Association, Judiciary Division
    • Bench/Bar Relations Committee
    • Board of Directors, N.D. Ohio Chapter
    • National Convention 2000 Steering Committee
  • Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)
    • Public Arbitrator (no. A58913)
  • American Arbitration Association
    • Weeklong Intensive Mediation Training
  • Associate Adjunct Professor of Law, Case Western Reserve University Law School
    • Teaching Pretrial Practice to third-year students.  Consistent student evaluations of “excellent.”
  • Licensed Instructor, Ohio Peace Officers Training Council
    • Teaching trial testimony to City of Cleveland Police Cadets.

Professional Admissions

  • Ohio Supreme Court, Atty. No. 0055347
  • Colorado Supreme Court, Atty. No. 022420
  • New York Supreme Court, Atty. No. 5082193
  • United States District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
  • Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation
  • United States Supreme Court


  • Francis McGovern Award for Outstanding Writing and Research on Special Masters
  • Case Western Reserve University Law School, Honorary Society of Benchers
  • Life Member, Sixth Circuit Judicial Conference
  • Life Member, Judicial Conference of the Eighth Judicial District of Ohio
  • 2008 Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel


  • Appointing Special Masters and Other Judicial Adjuncts: A Benchbook for Judges (5th ed. 2013).
    • Editor and Contributor. To download a copy of this Benchbook, click HERE.
  • Cohen’s Special Master Case Reporter
    • Editor and Publisher. To view this month’s Reporter, click HERE.
  • Special Masters versus Magistrate Judges: No Contest, The Federal Lawyer 73 (Sept. 2014).
    • To read this article, click HERE.
  • The Judge, the Special Master, and You, Litigation Magazine (ABA Vol. 40 no. 4).
    • To read this article, click HERE.
  • The Most Powerful Federal Venue Statute of All, Inter Alia Magazine (FBA Aug. 2010).
    • To read this article, click HERE.
  • David R. Cohen, Note, Judicial Malpractice Insurance? The Judiciary Responds to the Loss of Absolute Judicial Immunity, 41 Case W. Res. L. Rev. 267 (1990). This Note received national attention: Are Judges Overcharged for Insurance? Law Review Article Says Premiums Are Too High, The National Law Journal at 10 (March 19, 1991).

Judicial Opinions

Here are some examples of appellate court endorsements of opinions I drafted:

  • In re: Welding Fumes Prods. Liab. Litig., 364 F.Supp.2d 669 (N.D. Ohio 2005) (in a matter of first impression, concluding plaintiffs claims for failure to warn were not preempted by federal law) (the Supreme Court quoted this opinion with approval in Altria Group, Inc. v. Good, 129 S.Ct. 538 (2008) (Thomas, J., dissenting); further, this opinion was discussed at length with approval in Richard C. Ausness, The Welding Fume Case and the Preemptive Effect of OSHA’s Hazcom Standard on Common Law Failure-to-Warn Claims, 54 Buff. L. Rev. 103, 119 (2006)).
  • In re: Sulzer Hip Prosthesis and Knee Prosthesis Liab. Litig., 268 F.Supp.2d 907 (N.D. Ohio 2003), affirmed, 398 F.3d 778 (6th Cir. 2005) (entering common benefit attorney fee awards following $1 Billion MDL class action settlement) (on appeal, the Sixth Circuit complimented the “holistic and reasonable nature of the court’s analysis”).
  • Doughty v. City of Vermilion, 118 F.Supp.2d 819 (N.D. Ohio 1999), affirmed, 2000 WL 1478388 (6th Cir. Oct. 4, 2000) (dismissing an exotic dancer’s First Amendment claims, brought under 42 U.S.C. §1983) (on appeal, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals stated this opinion was “well-reasoned” and wrote that, “[b]ecause the reasoning that supports the judgment in the defendants’ favor has been clearly articulated by the district court in a thorough and comprehensive opinion, the issuance of a detailed written opinion by this court would serve no useful purpose”).
  • Ohio Hosp. Ass’n v. Shalala, 978 F. Supp. 735 (N.D. Ohio 1997), reversed in part, 201 F.3d 418 (6th Cir. 2000), cert. denied, 531 U.S. 1071 (2001) (examining subject matter jurisdiction in a lawsuit brought under the False Claims Act) (on appeal, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals noted this opinion was “extensive and very helpful”).
  • Weatherchem Corp. v. J.L. Clark, Inc., 937 F. Supp. 1262 (N.D. Ohio 1996), affirmed in part and vacated in part, 1998 WL 854427 (Fed. Cir. Dec. 7, 1998) (declaring two patents invalid) (on appeal, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals characterized this opinion as “thorough and legally sound”).
  • Rose v. Village of Peninsula, 875 F. Supp. 442 (N.D. Ohio 1995) (analyzing separation-of-powers issues and finding a village mayor’s court unconstitutional) (the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, in DePiero v. City of Macedonia, 180 F. 3d 770, 780 (6th Cir. 1999), adopted fully the Rose analysis, calling it “articulate and persuasive”).

Other Employment

Senior Judicial Clerk, Northern District of Ohio

  • Honorable Kathleen McDonald O’Malley, 1994-1996 and 1997-2004 – Contacted by Judge O’Malley upon her appointment to the federal bench, invited to serve as law clerk and assist with all aspects of forming new chambers procedures.
  • Honorable Solomon Oliver, Jr., 1996-1997
  • Honorable Ann Aldrich, 1991-1992

Associate Attorney, Porter, Wright, Morris & Arthur, 1992-1994

  • Specializing in commercial litigation in trial and appellate courts. Annual performance review ratings of “superior.”

Before Law School, 1982-1989

  • Assistant Product Manager, Progressive Insurance Company 
    • Managing high-risk truck programs.
  • Commercial Leasing Agent, M.H. Hausman Company 
    • Specializing in retail leases and property sales.
  • Vice President, Infomat International
    • Start-up technology and advertising company


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