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Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt

Zach Berne

Zach Berne



  • Environmental Compliance and Safety
  • Business and Corporate
  • Employment Litigation
  • Land Use and Entitlement

WSG Practice Industries



Zach Berne’s experience as a litigator includes representing clients with interests in real estate, banking, and the maritime and fishing industries. His practice focuses on insurance coverage, vessel casualties, maritime personal injury, commercial leases, and assisting property owners facing governmental taking via eminent domain.

Zach has represented clients at the trial and appellate levels in both state and federal courts and with maritime oil pollution claims before the National Pollution Funds Center. He began his legal career with a year-long clerkship at the High Court of American Samoa. After completing his clerkship, Zach moved to Anchorage, where he worked as a litigator for a local firm specializing in insurance and criminal defense. His practice included a broad range of cases, from dram shop claims and insurance coverage disputes to assaults and federal drug conspiracies.

Before entering the legal profession, Zach worked in construction and agriculture positions, including as an ironworker at the U.S. Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station and as a wildland firefighter for the U.S. Forest Service.

Bar Admissions

  • Alaska State Courts
  • Federal Courts
  • Oregon State Courts
  • American Samoa (inactive)


  • Pomona College, Bachelor of Arts, Politics (2006)
  • The George Washington University Law School, Juris Doctor degree (2013)
Areas of Practice

Business and Corporate | Employment Litigation | Environmental Compliance and Safety | Land Use and Entitlement | Real Estate

Professional Career

Significant Accomplishments

  • Counsels clients in the maritime and natural resources industries regarding incident response, environmental issues, vessel casualties and injuries to mariners.
  • Investigates and analyzes liability in maritime matters and insurance coverage issues.
  • Prepares claims to the National Pollution Funds Center for incident response compensation for natural resources and maritime clients.
  • Represents financial services clients in suits regarding breach of contract, intellectual property issues and misrepresentation of loan terms.


  • Tax Reform: What Does the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Mean for the Transportation, Ports and Maritime Industry?

WSG's members are independent firms and are not affiliated in the joint practice of professional services. Each member exercises its own individual judgments on all client matters.

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