Except for his education and a six-year stint (1989-1995) in Los Angeles, California, Mr. Berkbigler is a life-long resident of Effingham County, Illinois. Since his return to Effingham from California, he has been a sole practioner specializing in civil litigation with an emphasis on family law matters and the representation of persons and families who have suffered injuries or death caused by the wrongful conduct of others. He has recently expanded his practice to include Estates and Estate Planning services as well.
From 1980 to 1989, he served as a Circuit Court Judge in the Fourth Judicial Circuit of Illinois, which includes Effingham County and 8 other central and southern Illinois counties. During his time in California, he was a senior litigation associate with Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker, a major national and international law firm based in Los Angeles, and later with Nagler & Berkbigler in Beverly Hills, California.
He is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law (J.D., 1972) where he was a member of the Law Review and Order of the Coif (top 10% of his graduating class), and Southern Illinois University, Carbondale (B.A., 1968). During his law school career, he also clerked for the Urbana law firm of Webber, Balbach, Thies & Follmer. He also served as Effingham County Assistant State's Attorney from 1973 to 1975, in addition to being in private practice with offices in Altamont, Ilinois from 1972 to 1980 when he was appointed to the bench.
He is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association, where he currently serves on the Assembly (the policy making arm of the ISBA), and the Tort Law Section Council, the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, and the Effingham County Bar Association.