Steven Oberman - Oberman & Rice

Steven Oberman

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2007
Phone: 865-249-7200

Steve is the managing partner of The Oberman & Rice Law Firm, practicing DUI defense law primarily in Knoxville and the East Tennessee region of the state. Since 1980, Steve has successfully represented thousands of clients charged with DUI and Vehicular Homicide.

Mr. Oberman is the author of DUI: The Crimes & Consequences in Tennessee (Thomson-West Publishing, updated annually since first published in 1991); and since 2003, has been the co-author of Drunk Driving Defense, (Wolters-Kluwer/Aspen Publishing) with Lawrence Taylor of Long Beach, California. Both texts are widely relied upon by judges, prosecutors and defense lawyers.

Steve was a founding member of The National College for DUI Defense, Inc. and was a member of the Board of Regents of the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. from 1999 until 2011.  Mr. Oberman served as Dean of the organization from 2009-2010 and was named Dean Emeritus from 2010 - 2011.  He currently remains active in the organization and has held the designation of "Fellow" since 2011. 

Additionally, Mr. Oberman has been chair or co-chair of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers' DUI Committee since 1995 and is a frequent contributor to The Champion, its official publication. Mr. Oberman is one of only a few lawyers in the nation who have been certified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to administer the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests.  He was also the first lawyer in Tennessee to be Board Certified as a DUI Defense Specialist by the National College for DUI Defense.

Mr. Oberman is a popular speaker at seminars throughout the United States and Canada and has even spoken to court officials in Cambridge, England about defending impaired drivers. In 2002, he was honored to demonstrate cross-examination techniques and lecture at the FBI Training Academy in Quantico, Virginia on the topic of courtroom testimony.  In 2006, he was appointed to the Governor’s Task Force on DUI Laws in Tennessee.

Steve has been an adjunct professor at the University of Tennessee Law School since 1993 and has received prestigious awards for his faculty contributions.  He has been named to Tennessee’s Best Lawyers List annually since the inception of the list in 2004. It described him as: “[the] Godfather statewide in the area of DUI”; “Brilliant lawyer, great teacher”; and “Well-regarded trial attorney with ‘professorial’ demeanor. . . .”.  He has also been honored as one of the “Best Lawyers in America” by the publication of the same name; a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer” by the American Trial Lawyers Association; and a “Super Lawyer” by Mid-South Super Lawyers magazine. Among Mr. Oberman's many honors, he was named Knoxville's 2013 Lawyer of the Year by the "Best Lawyers" organization in the area of Criminal Defense, Non-White-Collar Crime.  Moreover, "U.S. News and World Report" designated Oberman & Rice as a "Tier 1 Best Law Firm" in Tennessee for DUI Defense and Criminal Defense.  Mr. Oberman also maintains the highest rating from the renowned Martindale-Hubbell™ and AVVO rating systems.

Additional Information

Certifications — Board Certified as a DUI Defense Specialist by the National College for DUI Defense
Areas of Concentration — Criminal Defense: DUI / DWI, Criminal Fraud, Criminal Domestic Violence; Personal Injury: Plaintiff
The University of TennesseeJ.D. 1980
National Association of Criminal Defense LawyersNational College for DUI Defense

Case History

State of Tennessee v. Roy Anthony Ferrante


A criminal defendant’s appearance in court upon a
purported charging instrument that was signed by an
untrained deputy court clerk is void ab initio and does not
serve to commence a prosecution under Tennessee law.

Not only was Mr. Ferrante's case dismissed, but
many criminal cases were subject to dismissal based on the Tennessee Supreme Court's opinion.

Office Location

550 Main Street, Suite 730
Knoxville, TN 37902
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2013 Lawyer of the Year in Criminal Defense: General Practice of the Knoxville Metro Area
Steven Oberman has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2013!

Practice Areas

Criminal Defense: General Practice (DWI Defense, State and Federal)
DUI/DWI Defense

Other Information

Gender: Male