Pursuing Justice for All

Marc J. Bern As Seen In ForbesOne of the key things that fuels the team at Marc J. Bern & Partners LLP is the chance to create meaningful change that affects many people.

“Ultimately, our clients always come first and foremost, of course, but we are always looking at a benefit to society,” says Marc J. Bern, founder of the firm and a litigator with more than 40 years’ experience.

The willingness to tackle extremely complex cases, many of which other firms won’t take on, and the tenacity to fight for wide-scale change are hallmarks of Bern’s leadership style and hiring priorities. The firm – a national leader in mass tort litigation, medical malpractice and personal injury – has nearly 30 attorneys and more than 80 staff at offices across the country. Its partners have been involved in cases that have resulted in more than $3 billion in settlements and awards.

“We have a group of people who are committed to justice and to doing the right thing,” Bern says. “They treat people the way that individuals should be treated – not as numbers, but as humans who have suffered. Whether we represent 1,000 people in the litigation or 5,000 or one person, we get justice for each and every one.”

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Two areas where Marc J. Bern & Partners has won results that have benefited many people are drug product safety and railroad workplace safety. In the drug product safety area, the firm has been involved in cases that have resulted in changes to pharmaceuticals including diabetes medications and anti-clotting drugs. And it fought, under the Federal Employers Liability Act, on behalf of railroad workers who were exposed to toxins and developed cancer.

“We hope the problems we bring to light will ultimately make Big Pharma have more of a conscience and be more careful in distributing what are expected to be lifesaving drugs but turn out to be just the opposite,” Bern says.

The pharmaceutical work is just one example of the complicated and daunting issues the firm faces down: Its attorneys are currently fighting for families in the Flint, Michigan, water crisis. Bern represented 27 families in civil litigation in the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting. And his former firm served as the lead lawyers on behalf of 10,000 people in the World Trade Center Disaster Site Litigation. Meanwhile, Marc J. Bern & Partners continues to pursue claims under the James Zadroga Act for those whose health was affected by Sept. 11 and in fact represents the family of the effort’s namesake James Zadroga, a police officer whose death is attributed to exposure to toxins at the 9/11 site.

“Anybody in this country has the ability to go to court and bring a case. This is what separates us as a true democracy from any other place on the planet,” says Bern. “I don’t think I’ll ever retire. There’s just too much work to be done.”