Best's Insurance Professional Resources

Your Online Portal for Claims Industry Information

Best's Insurance Professional Resources

Your Online Portal for Claims Industry Information



Best's Recommended Insurance Attorneys

General Defense


Berk, Merchant & Sims, PLC

2 Alhambra Plaza, Suite 700, Coral Gables, Florida 33134

Established: 2005

Practice Areas

  • Bad Faith
  • First Party Matters
  • Third Party
  • Insurance Coverage
  • Insurance Defense
  • Property

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About Us

Berk, Merchant & Sims, PLC is a full service insurance firm providing assistance in coverage, liability and bad faith disputes. For additional information please visit our web site www.berklawfirm.com, or contact us at wberk@berklawfirm.com

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Client Information

Insurance Clients

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Personnel Information

Members of the Firm


William S. Berk

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 1982
  • U.S. District Court, Middle, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
Memberships:
  • American (Torts and Insurance Practice Section) and Dade County Bar Associations
  • The Florida Bar
  • Dade County Defense Bar Association
  • Florida Defense Lawyers Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel
Education:
  • Bowdoin College, A.B. (cum laude), 1979
  • University of Miami School of Law, J.D., 1982

Born: 1957

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Evelyn M. Merchant

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 1985
  • U.S. District Court, Middle and Southern Districts of Florida
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
Memberships:
  • American Bar Association
  • The Florida Bar
  • Ft. Lauderdale Claims Association
  • Florida Advisory Committee on Arson Defense
  • Florida Defense Lawyers Association
Education:
  • Florida International University, B.S., 1978
  • Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center, J.D., 1985

Born: 1949

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Melissa M. Sims

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Louisiana, 1992
  • Florida, 1996
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
  • U.S. District Court, Middle, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida
Memberships:
  • Federal, American (Torts and Insurance Practice Section) and Dade County Bar Associations
Education:
  • Louisiana State University, B.A., 1986
  • St. Thomas University School of Law, J.D. (with honors), 1992

Born: 1963

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Partners


Patrick E. Betar

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2005
  • U.S. District Court, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida
Memberships:
  • American and Dade County Bar Associations
  • The Florida Bar
Education:
  • Rhodes College, B.A./B.A., 2001
  • Syracuse University College of Law, M.A., 2004

Born: 1979

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Jonathan Tobin

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2009
Education:
  • College of the Holy Cross, B.A., 2005
  • Northeastern University School of Law, J.D., 2009

Born: 1982

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Illon Kantro

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2006
Education:
  • American University, B.A., 2003
  • University of Miami, J.D., 2006

Born: 1981

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Senior Attorney



William Xanttopoulos

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • New York, 1981
  • Florida, 1994
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Southern Districts of New York
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Second and Ninth Circuits
Memberships:
  • American Bar Association
Education:
  • University of the Pacific, B.A., 1976
  • The University of Texas School of Law, J.D., 1980

Born: 1953

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Associates



Evan Brooks

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2009
Education:
  • University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, B.A., 2005
  • University of Miami School of Law, J.D., 2009

Born: 1982

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Perdita M. Martin

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2004
  • U.S. District Court, Middle, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida
Education:
  • Florida International University, B.A., 1999
  • Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, J.D., 2004

Born: 1972

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Steven J. Getman

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2009
Education:
  • Florida State University, B.S. Finance (Dean's List), 2004
  • St. Thomas University School of Law, J.D., 2008

Born: 1983

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Ricardo J. Fernandez

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2014
Education:
  • University of Miami, B.A. Physiology (Dean's List), 2010
  • University of Miami School of Law, J.D. (cum laude), 2013

Born: 1988

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Austin J. North

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2014
Education:
  • Boston University, B.A. Political Science, 2011
  • University of Miami School of Law, J.D., 2014

Born: 1988

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Howard Brilliant

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2015
Education:
  • San Diego State University, B.A. Political Science, 2011
  • University of Miami School of Law, J.D., 2015

Born: 1988

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Elizabeth Jimenez

Coral Gables, FL

Admitted
  • Florida, 2013
Education:
  • Florida International University, B.A. (cum laude), 2009
  • Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center, J.D. (Dean's List), 2013

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Joshua M. Salmon

Coral Gables, FL

Years of Experience: 5

Admitted
  • Florida, 2013
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 2015
Education:
  • Indiana State University, B.A., 2008
  • University of Miami School of Law, J.D. (cum laude), 2013

Born: 1985

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Alan H. Swindoll

Coral Gables, FL

Years of Experience: 3

Admitted
  • Florida, 2015
  • U.S. District Court, Middle and Southern Districts of Florida
Education:
  • Baylor University, B.A. Political Science (Dean's List), 2012
  • University of Florida, Levin College of Law, J.D. (Dean's List), 2015
Language:
  • Spanish

Born: 1990

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Mark St. Vil

Coral Gables, FL

Years of Experience: 4

Admitted
  • Florida, 2015
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 2018
Education:
  • Florida A&M University, B.A. Political Science (magna cum laude), 2011
  • Florida A&M University College of Law, J.D., 2014
Language:
  • Haitian Creole

Born: 1989

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Bruno A. Garofalo

Coral Gables, FL

Years of Experience: 2

Admitted
  • Florida, 2016
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 2017
Education:
  • Florida State University, B.A. Political Science (cum laude), 2011
  • American University, Washington College of Law, J.D., 2015

Born: 1989

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Andrew S. Genden

Coral Gables, FL

Years of Experience: 5

Admitted
  • Florida, 2013
Education:
  • University of Miami, B.A. International Relations, 2008
  • St. Thomas University School of Law, J.D. (Dean's List), 2013

Born: 1985

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