Once upon a time, there was a boy who thought he wanted to be a doctor. But then he had to take those pesky chemistry courses in college, and those plans changed. So then he became a political science major, but still wasn’t completely sure that it felt right. And then a professor came along in his second year that made everything clear. On the first day of class, he gave everyone a serious talk. “What are you guys really doing with your time here?” he asked. “You’re spending all this money on a degree, but what are you going to make of it? What are you going to have to show for it?”
The instructor started talking about careers, and one of them he mentioned was an attorney.
The more Robin Rios thought about it, the more it made sense. He thought back to when he was doing community service in high school. There was a program called Teen Court, and the volunteers could either be jury members or attorneys. He did both and enjoyed it. So when his instructor started asking the BIG questions, Robin’s path became clear. An attorney he was destined to be.
Jump forward from the second year of college to the second year of law school. Robin was interviewing for a summer clerkship. BK was one of the firms he was interviewing with. Enter Jesse Bernheim. “The way he presented himself and the way he described to me what he likes about this business—his passion really shone through. I also liked the personal injury and property insurance practice areas even back then, and seeing the type of business Jesse ran made my choice an easy one.” And aside from a brief time away in 2020, Robin has been with Jesse, and BK, ever since.
Some of Robin’s biggest victories have also been some of his most personal. “Going back to when I was very fresh out of law school, I worked on this case with Louis Batista, one of the other partners,” said Robin. “It was a motorcycle accident case that actually occurred in the town that I grew up in. In fact, I knew the exact intersection where it happened. It was a very bad accident with life-altering permanent injuries. By the time we were done working on the case, it was an over $2 million settlement with the insurance company.”
“A more recent one that sticks out is I had a Spanish-speaking client from Miami who was an immigrant from low socio-economic means. She was involved in an accident on Alligator Alley, which goes pretty much from Fort Lauderdale to Naples. She was in a bad rollover accident. The pre-suit offer was $10,000. The client didn’t end up having surgery, but the property damage was really bad. It was a $100,000 policy. I told my client, ‘Don’t accept the $10K. We’ll litigate this.’ I litigated it and recovered the full $100,000 policy. I was proud of this result because in her socioeconomic status, it’s a life-changing amount of money. It made me feel really good about what we do.”
“Robin is an extremely valued member of the team,” says Founder Jesse Bernheim. “He started with me as a young law clerk, and I am really proud of how he has developed into such a great attorney. I hear the greatest things from clients and referral sources about him. We are lucky to have Robin on our litigation team.”
These days, Robin helps Jesse run the first-party litigation department and is the managing attorney of the Starke, Florida, office, which is about 40 minutes out of Jacksonville. Robin grew up on the west coast of Florida, and then went to law school and worked in Broward County. But he always wanted to live the small-town life, and relocated to Starke.
“With small-town life, there’s a really significant sense of community,” said Robin. “Because you not only know your neighbors, you also see them around town, at the grocery store, at the gym. It’s nice to be a part of a close-knit community.
I’m also a big nature guy and have always really been into the outdoors. So I like being able to have all those opportunities around me whether it be fishing for bass in the lakes, hunting, or hiking and biking trails. I really enjoy just the peacefulness and tranquility of it—never having to deal with traffic on an interstate unless I’m going to Jacksonville. Everything’s more relaxed and flows at a nice pace, and I really enjoy that, especially because of the adversarial nature of my job in litigation. It’s nice to have an escape from that with the rest of my life, right?”
Robin comes to the end with words for the man who gave him his legal start and his trust: “I’m very grateful to Jesse—that he was willing to open an office up here so that I can have this opportunity. Not everybody would do that. And I’m very thankful for him.”
The article’s ending though, will circle around to the start of the interview, when Robin had said he had always been drawn to personal injury: So probably the biggest thing that I anticipated before really starting and still to this day is probably my favorite part of the job is helping people with low economic means get justice. It feels really good when I can get a life-changing amount of money in a settlement for someone who doesn’t have much to begin with. So I really feel that it’s almost like a, you know, a Robin Hood role here, and I love that.”
Table of Contents
Personal Injury Practice Areas
Slip and Fall
Jet Ski Accident
Dog Bite Accident