Helping people since 1943

Isadore S. Bernstein

April 5, 1922 – June 29, 2010

Isadore S. Bernstein

Mr. Bernstein graduated from Columbia High School at age 15 and entered the University of South Carolina. Mr. Bernstein graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from the University in 1941 and magna cum laude from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1943 as the first honor graduate. He was the Chief Justice of the Society of Wig and Robe, Editor-in-Chief of the Selden Society Yearbook (predecessor to the Law Review), and a member of Omicron Delta Kappa.

Mr. Bernstein was a captain in the United States Army during World War II, serving in the Judge Advocate General’s Office. After the war, Mr. Bernstein opened his own practice and taught business law at the University of South Carolina. He later served as a West Columbia Municipal Court Judge for 20 years, while continuing to engage in the private practice of law. In the 1960s until 1990, he partnered with his brother-in-law, Henry Hammer, and they formed the law firm of Hammer and Bernstein. The strength and reputation of the firm was built upon the strong foundation of ingenuity and leadership demonstrated by these two men. In 1994, Mr. Bernstein was joined by two of his children, Lowell E. Bernstein and Beth E. Bernstein, and formed what is now known as Bernstein and Bernstein, LLC.

During a career that spanned over 60 years, Mr. Bernstein argued and prevailed in numerous cases in the United States District Court and South Carolina Supreme Court. He helped create and shape new law and precedent during his career. Mr. Bernstein was considered by his contemporaries to be a “lawyer’s lawyer.” He had a brilliant legal mind and was exceptional in his devotion to the legal profession.

Mr. Bernstein was admitted to practice before the South Carolina Bar, the United States Supreme Court, United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, the United States District Court, and all of the South Carolina State Courts. He was a member of the South Carolina Bar, Richland County Bar Association, American Bar Association, and South Carolina Trial Lawyers Association.


  • “Pleading,” The Survey of South Carolina Law Issue,
    Carolina Law Quarterly, 1957-1963
  • “Dependent Relative Revocation,” Selden Society Yearbook
  • “Illegitimates and Inheritance,” Selden Society Yearbook


  • Trial Judge Advocate, Fort Lewis, Washington, 1945-1946
  • Instructor, Commercial Law, University of South Carolina, 1946-1951
  • Municipal Judge, City of West Columbia, South Carolina, 1955-1975
  • “AV” rating, Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2015 Memory Hold the Door Honor recipient (see