Hal received his B.A. from Pennsylvania State University in 1971 and his J.D. with honors from Villanova University School of Law in 1974. At Villanova, Hal was an associate editor of the Villanova Law Review and Order of the Coif. He is a member of the Bars of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the Supreme Court of the United States, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third and Fourth Circuits and the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. From 1974 until 1982, Hal served as an Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia under F. Emmett Fitzpatrick, Jr. and Edward G. Rendell. During his years in the District Attorney's Office Hal tried numerous jury trials, supervised a grand jury investigating charity frauds, and became chief of the special investigations unit. In 1982, Hal entered private practice representing people who had sustained profound and often life altering injuries. In 1984, Hal and his partners formed the law firm Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler. In his capacity as a partner in BRBS Hal has represented victims in complex cases arising out of exposure to asbestos, latex, harmful drugs and substandard medical care. Hal has been successful in obtaining millions of dollars in compensation from juries and settlements for those most in need, such as children whose circumstances of birth have left them with permanent disabilities and families of asbestos exposed people stricken with lung cancer and mesothelioma. Hal has consistently received the highest ratings from his peers by Martindale Hubbell. In 2000, he was accepted as a life member of the National Register of Who's Who and has been listed in Who's Who in American Law. In 2004, the inaugural year of the Pennsylvania Super Lawyer publication, Hal was named a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer, meaning he was selected by his peers as being among the top five percent of practicing attorneys in Pennsylvania. He has been named a Super Lawyer every year since 2004.
In 2006, Hal was inducted as a fellow of the prestigious American College of Trial Lawyers. Hal is a member of various professional organizations including the American Association for Justice and the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association where he served as a member of its Board of Directors for many years. In 2006, Hal was appointed as a hearing committee member by the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania and served in that capacity until 2010, when he was appointed by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania to the Court's Disciplinary Board. Hal retired from the Board after serving two three year terms, the maximum amount of time permitted by the Court. In his final years of service the Supreme Court named Hal as the Chairman of the Board. Hal taught trial practice for several years as an adjunct professor of law at the Widener University School of Law. He also taught various courses in criminal justice at Temple University as an adjunct faculty member when he served in the District Attorney's Office. Hal has lectured professionally over the course of his career on topics related to complex tort litigation and asbestos. In addition to his professional activities, Hal has served on the Board of Trustees of the Library Company of Philadelphia for many years and is its current President. Hal also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Visitors for the Richards Center for Civil War Era Studies at the Pennsylvania State University.