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Attention to Detail.

At Bernhardt Riley, our skilled attorneys have extensive trial experience in Criminal Law, Debt Relief, Business Litigation, Real Estate Litigation and General Civil Litigation. We are committed to providing the best possible representation for our clients.

You want us on your side!

As former felony prosecutors, Bernhardt Riley understands the best defenses available to defend you when it counts, and with a skilled real estate attorney and Realtor on its team, attains the experience needed to represent and protect the right of businesses and property owners alike.

Bernhardt Riley | Criminal Law, Business Litigation and Civil Litigation Attorneys | Tampa and Destin Florida

                    M. Bernhardt

Stephen M. Bernhardt

Stephen M. Bernhardt has been practicing law since 2010 and has experience in both criminal and civil law. His legal career began at the State Attorney’s Office where he was a prosecutor for several years. Bernhardt prosecuted multiple trials resulting in prison sentences of more than ten years, including a trial that resulted in a guilty verdict and a mandatory life-in-prison sentence.

After leaving the State Attorney’s Office, Bernhardt began practicing civil law for one of the largest creditors’ rights firms in the United States. He quickly became the lead litigator for the firm’s Florida office and handled countless civil hearings and trials.

Ultimately, Bernhardt started his own practice. Using the knowledge Stephen has gained throughout the last decade, Bernhardt Law maintains a sharp focus and dedication to ensuring each client’s specific situation is handled with the utmost professionalism, attention to detail, and integrity.

                    Pearl Riley

Athena Pearl Riley

Athena Pearl Riley is a former felony prosecutor, licensed REALTOR®, and real estate investor who has been practicing law since 2010.

Mrs. Riley guides individuals through the formation and defense of their business entities, and helps property owners and HOA's manage their disputes. She also defends claiments in civil asset forfeiture cases brought by the state, among handling a number of other civil litigation matters.

Mrs. Rileys extensive trial experience, meticulous attention to case details, and real estate background has made her the go-to attorney for individuals, investors and businesses alike seeking the zealous representation they deserve!

Call us now for a free consultation!


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"Outstanding representation"

"Highly recommend"

"Honest Attorney"

"Most stand-up attorney on the planet"

"Law Firm exceeded my expectations"

"Family firm that cares about you and your results"

"knowledgeable and professional"

"Glad we found Bernhardt Riley"

"Best lawyer I could have been referred to!"

"An incredible attorney!"

"Civil Suit"


I was involved in a contract dispute with a former employer. Steve was very helpful and effective throughout the negotiations. He does a great job explaining different paths to pursue and was always responded quickly to any concerns I had. He was very knowledgeable and I will continue going to him with any legal help I may need in the future.

- Ryan

When looking for a lawyer, I wanted someone who I felt truly cared, who was direct, professional, knowledgeable about what I needed, and gave results in a timely manner. Stephen absolutely delivered. He really went beyond what I had expected and even worked with me on payment. If your looking for someone to work hard for what you need, I highly recommend Stephen, and will definitely use him again.

- Kristen

Honest attorney with diverse experience. Stephen actually cares about his clients and cases. If you want a hard working attorney, he is the one to chose!

- Tahlia

This is the most stand-up attorney on the planet. He is honest, hard working, professional and a God-send. He has helped us tremendously while dealing with a case involving real estate fraud and is helping us seek justice for the harm caused to our children because of the conditions of the home. I couldn’t have asked for a better attorney to represent us. He’s truly a brilliant guy and worth his weight in gold! I can’t say enough about him!

- Joelle

I recently hired the Bernhardt Riley Firm for a matter, and this Law Firm exceeded my expectations. They were very professional, courteous and prompt in taking care of this matter from start to finish. I "HIGHLY" recommend this Law Firm to any and everyone, you will not be disappointed. As you seek an attorney, please consider Attorney Bernhardt Riley Firm, for fast professional, and courteous service.

- Debbie

The Bernhardt Riley firm is a true, down-to-earth, family firm that cares about you and your results... unlike other firms that worry more about billing than you. If you're in a difficult spot, and want the best possible outcome, then you want these guys protecting you.

- Michael

Stephen M. Bernhardt is knowledgeable and professional. As an experienced litigator, he's highly skilled and effectively communicates throughout the entire process. The combination of expertise and professional connections make Bernhardt Riley the superior choice for your legal needs.

- Niki

We recently found ourselves in need of a lawyer for the first time. We purchased a new home and also had some insurance matters we needed some documentation written up for. Man, am I glad we found Bernhardt Riley! From the office staff to Stephen himself, my wife and I had nothing but a positive experience. Stephen went above and beyond to take care of our items and I was extremely pleased in the professionalism and prompt turn around. I would recommend Bernhardt Riley to everyone!

- Ian

Athena Riley is the best lawyer I could have possibly found in a time of need. With a 24 hour time crunch and the odds stacked against me, she went into over drive and got everything my family and I needed submitted to the right places. She went above and beyond my expectations of a lawyer and I could tell that she truly cared to try and help my family. This time around it was an emergency and she pulled through. If you are looking for some who is going to go the extra mile and be with you every step of the way, Athena Riley is exactly who you need. Thank you so much for all that you did.

- Mauricio Madureria

I’ve been working with Athena on a very difficult partition action. She as been on point and prepare every step of the way. The case went to trail with a positive outcome. She’s impressive to watch, a very skilled litigator. I would give her 10 stars if possible.

- Linda

I hired Mrs. Riley to represent me against a termite company for damages that occurred to my home during my contract with them. Athena was always very thorough, very professional and always kept me in the loop. She was aggressive, but it a great way, when dealing with them, as to what would be an acceptable outcome for me. I truly believe she has/had my very best interest at heart. If i ever need legal help again, she will be the first person i contact!

- Lynne

Athena was tenacious during trial. I felt the defendants didn't have a chance. It was difficult because the defendants didn't have An attorney, which created more work for Athena and more expense to me. Athena took me on as a client to continue my brother's case after he passed away. She trusted me, saw it through, and was Victorious in getting justice for my brother. Thank you, Athena!

- Michelle

Athena Pearl Riley in the office