Patricia A. Pacenta

Of Counsel | Akron

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Assistant  |  Michele Workman  :  [email protected]

About Patricia:

As a trusts and estates lawyer, I assist individuals, families, business owners and charitable organizations with their estate planning, charitable gift planning and estate administration needs. Although I have extensive experience developing sophisticated plans for high net worth clients with specific federal or estate tax issues, I work with all clients regardless of their economic status.


I frequently assist closely-held business owners to resolve the challenges inherent in integrating the needs of their businesses with their overall estate planning goals. I represent charitable organizations in developing planned giving programs. No matter the client, I develop plans that are customized for my clients’ particular objectives and are flexible enough to accommodate the unexpected.


I value the opportunity that my practice affords to assist women, both married and single, with their planning needs. However, my clients include individuals from many different walks of life, statuses and economic circumstances. In each case I bring to bear my 45+ years of experience to help my clients solve their problems, plan for their futures, protect their assets and achieve their goals.

  • Has extensive experience in the areas of estate planning, business succession planning, charitable gift planning and estate and trust administration
  • Joined the firm as an associate in 1980; was elected a partner in 1985
  • Prior to joining Buckingham, practiced law in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Served as a law clerk to Justice William G. Callow of the Wisconsin Supreme Court during 1977 and 1978

  • Marquette University Law School (J.D., magna cum laude, 1977)
  • The Ohio State University (M.A., 1969)
  • Marquette University (B.A., 1968)


  • Ohio

  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America® (1989-2016, 2018-2024)
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers® "Women in Law" Business Edition for  Trusts & Estates Law (2016)
  • Recognized in Best Lawyers Business Edition® for Trusts and Estates Law (2015)
  • Received special recognition for being listed in Best Lawyers in America® for 20 consecutive years
  • Selected for inclusion in Ohio’s Super Lawyers® (2004-2024), as voted by her peers
  • Recognized in Cleveland-area Top 25 Women Super Lawyers® (2007-2009, 2012)
  • Named “Lawyer of the Year” in Trusts & Estates by Best Lawyers in America® (2011)
  • Recognized in Ohio’s Top 100 Super Lawyers® (2004-2006)
  • Recognized in Ohio’s Top 50 Super Lawyers® (2005)
  • Recognized in Ohio’s Top 50 Women Super Lawyers® (2004-2009, 2011-2012)
  • Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating of AV® Preeminent™, which is the highest possible rating in both legal and ethical standards as established by confidential opinions from members of the Bar

  • American College of Trust & Estate Counsel, Fellow (1994 - Present)
  • Akron Tax and Estate Planning Council
  • The University of Akron Foundation, Estate Planning Professional Council, Center for Gift and Estate Planning
  • Crown Point Ecology Center, Board Member
Past Affiliations
  • Akron Community Foundation, Past Board Chair, Officer and Board Member
  • Akron General Medical Center Development Foundation, Past Board Member
  •  Visiting Nurse Service/Hospice Development Foundation, Past Board Chair and Board Member
  • Akron Tax and Estate Planning Council, Past President
  • Crown Point Ecology Center, Past Board Chair


  • Akron Bar Association
    • Probate Section
  • Ohio State Bar Association
    • Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section
  • American Bar Association
    • Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section


Our attorneys will provide a collaborative, thoughtful approach to your legal needs. We look forward to connecting with you.