Mr. Berner's practice focuses primarily on bankruptcy, commercial matters, and litigation including significant experience representing Chapter 11 debtors, bankruptcy trustees, secured and unsecured creditors, and other parties in major bankruptcy cases, workouts, and litigation. Recently, Mr. Berner has represented major creditors in numerous large retail and entertainment Chapter 11 cases, including Forever 21, Bon-Ton Stores, Gander Mountain Company, Gordmans Stores, David's Bridal, Caesars Entertainment, FullBeauty Brands, Z Gallerie, Pacific Sunwear, The Sports Authority, Samuels Jewelers, and Fortunoff Holdings.
Mr. Berner has been a member of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Ohio's Attorney Advisory Committee, Chapter 11 Subcommittee, since it was established in 2017 (and was appointed Co-Chair of the Chapter 11 Subcommittee in 2020). The Chapter 11 Subcommittee developed procedures for a more streamlined handling of "complex" Chapter 11 cases in the Southern District of Ohio, which resulted in the Court's entry of General Order 30 Regarding Complex Chapter 11 Cases.
Mr. Berner also has considerable experience representing businesses, municipalities, and cemeteries. He is a regular speaker on bankruptcy topics. Mr. Berner has been with Bailey Cavalieri LLC since its formation in 2003 and was formerly with the Am Law 100 firm of Arter & Hadden.
- Acted as debtor's counsel in Chapter 11 liquidation of Irwin Mortgage Corporation, (and non-debtor captive insurance company) a national mortgage lender and servicer which operated 169 production and satellite offices in 33 states.
- Represented private label / co-branded credit card issuers in bankruptcy and state court matters across country.
- Represented commercial real property lessors in multiple bankruptcy cases, including Guitar Center, Steinmart, and Tuesday Morning.
- Acted as debtor's counsel in Chapter 11 proceeding of Roberds, Inc., a publicly traded furniture, electronics and appliance retailer with 24 locations in 4 states.
- Acted as debtor's counsel in Chapter 11 proceeding of Genesis Wordwide, Inc. (and subsidiaries), a publicly traded metals processing company with 7 manufacturing facilities in multiple states.
- Represented credit union holding portfolio of several hundred vehicles in Chapter 7 proceeding of automobile leasing company.
- Represented major secured lender in Chapter 11 reorganization of Huffy Manufacturing, an international sporting goods manufacturer.
- Represented finance company holding $50 million in leases in Chapter 11 proceeding of Bush Leasing, a national truck leasing company.
- Represented Chapter 11 Trustee of National Liquidators, Inc., a multi-state Ponzi scheme, to prosecute in excess of 500 fraudulent transfer and preference actions.
- Acted as debtor's special counsel in Chapter 11 proceeding of SPECO to prosecute several hundred preference claims.
- Represented investors in alleged Ponzi scheme.
- Acted as counsel for post-confirmation debtor in action to enforce discharge and confirmation injunction.
- Represented insurance company in adversary proceeding initiated by Chapter 11 debtor.
- Represented directors and officers of publicly traded company during its Chapter 11 proceeding.
- Represented numerous asset purchasers in §363 bankruptcy sales.
- Represented financial institutions in workouts and in state and federal court litigation.
- Litigated hundreds of contested matters and adversary proceedings in bankruptcy proceedings.
- Represented various appellants and appellees in appeals of bankruptcy court decisions to the United States District Court, the Sixth Circuit BAP and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
- Represented national student loan guaranty agency.
- Represented Chapter 7 trustee in numerous cases.
- Represented municipality in a variety of litigation and non-litigation matters.
- Represented defendant in a qui tam whistleblower claim filed under federal False Claims Act.
- Ohio Super Lawyer
Affiliations and Civic Involvement
- American Bankruptcy Institute
- Thomas F. Waldron American Bankruptcy Law Forum
- Ohio State Bar Association
- Dayton Bar Association
- Member of Attorney Advisory Committee (and Co-Chair of Chapter 11 Subcommittee), United States Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of Ohio.
- Mediator, United States Bankruptcy Court Southern District of Ohio's Mediation Program.
- Bench Bar Conference, past Committee Member, United States Bankruptcy Court Southern District of Ohio
- National Aviation Heritage Alliance, Member Board of Trustees
- Woodland Cemetery Association of Dayton, Secretary and Member of Board of Trustees
- Woodland Arboretum Foundation, Secretary and Member of Board of Trustees
- Moraine Country Club, past Secretary and Member of Board of Governors
- Capital University (J.D., 1984)
- Indiana University (B.S. Kelley School of Business, 1981)
- U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio
- Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals