Bernard & Bernard Attorneys

Experience Makes the Difference

Est. 1930

Bernard & Bernard is a Los Angeles-based law firm specializing in catastrophic injury, medical malpractice, criminal defense, and civil litigation.

For over 90 years the Bernard family have been standing up for what’s right and empowering the powerless. With the experience and institutional knowledge gained from hundreds of trials, our extraordinary record of success has made us a formidable figure in the California legal arena.

We represent high profile clients, both civil and criminal, and have prosecuted actions against the Los Angeles Police Department and OC Sherriff’s Department.

Attorney Stephen Bernard


Managing Partner

When I walk into a courtroom I am so comfortable because I’ve done it so many times.”

Stephen Bernard is an extraordinary attorney. From accompanying his father, Saul Bernard, to court as an 11 year old, to winning hundreds of trials in his own 50 year legal career, he practically lives in the courtroom.

Whether it’s as the counsel of record in over 350 felony cases, or being instrumental in procuring the largest single class action settlement in California, Civil or Criminal, it doesn’t matter to Stephen. If you have been injured, accused or wronged by circumstance, Bernard & Bernard should be your first call.

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Medical Malpractice

$6 Million

Jury Trial in a traumatic brain injury in an assault at a psychiatric hospital

Medical Malpractice

$3.4 Million

Settlement in disputed liability case against neonatologist & NICU of hospital.

Premises Liability

$3.235 Million

Jury Trial in a contested premises liability case with a complex hip fracture.

Attorney Max Merzel



“For me it’s fascinating because you win the case from the writing”

Early experience of injustice at the age of 5 set Maksim Merzel on the road to becoming an attorney. Even before Law school he would read Supreme Court rulings and appellate opinions, just for fun!

Maksim’s special power is the ability to obsessively, compulsively, look at every possible angle to an argument and then succinctly and eloquently put that into words. Whether it’s the Law, Political system or the Legal system in general, both State and Federal, it’s Maksim’s depth of research and analysis that often provides his colleagues with the ammunition to win the trial.

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“Best attorneys I’ve ever worked with. Got into a car accident and my settlement was beyond my expectations. They care about their clients like they are family!!!! Thanks Shane, Steve, Alena and the rest of the team.”

Genna B., Yelp

Attorney Shane Bernard



“I’ve always wanted to be a lawyer. Why? I like the arguments and getting into it with people”

At 12 years old, Shane Bernard already knew which Law School he was going to attend. It would be easy to say that “The Law” is in Bernard’s blood, but it isn’t as simple as that. Just because your father and grandfather are lawyers of distinction, doesn’t mean you get a pass.

Shane’s outlier ability is to take his client’s thoughts, feelings and emotions and translate them in an eloquent and aggressive way that a Judge and Jury understand. Whether Civil, Personal Injury or Criminal Law, Shane Bernard is not only an outstanding litigator, but a truly remarkable communicator.

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Contact us today and to speak to an attorney at Bernard & Bernard.

We are here to help! Hablamos espanol.

Attorney Alena Klimianok



“I’m not afraid to take on a big hospital, I really don’t care”

On the day Alena Klimianok was sworn in as a California lawyer, Stephen Bernard took her to court for her first case. Since 2009, she has handled multiple trials, both court and jury, in criminal law and more recently in Medical Malpractice.

Driven by a strong sense of justice, Alena seeks equitable and ethical treatment for all and relishes the chance to use the law against society’s bullies. An active participant in the Med-Mal legal community, she not only secures significant damages for her clients, she also forces institutions to change policies and procedures.

Alena is a graduate from the CAALA Plaintiff’s Trial College, a prestigious trial academy, available only to a limited number of candidates, which provides 6 weeks of intensive training taught by a faculty of accomplished trial lawyers teaching advanced techniques in trial preparation and trial practice.

Read more about Alena