PDFPrintEmailAdd to Personalized Information Packet

Michael S. Oberman


Phone: 212.715.9294 Fax: 212.715.8294 New York

Michael Oberman is a partner in Kramer Levin’s Litigation Department and head of its Alternative Dispute Resolution Practice Group. He has litigated a wide variety of complex civil cases at the trial and appellate levels and in arbitration, including antitrust, breach of contract, copyright, securities and trademark cases.

In recent matters, Mr. Oberman served as lead trial counsel for respondent in a 20-day arbitration in which claimant sought over $130 million in damages; the arbitrators' award dismissed all of claimant's claims with prejudice and denied claimant any recovery of damages. He then successfully represented respondent in the judicial review of the award: the award was confirmed by N.Y. Supreme Court, N.Y. County; Supreme Court's judgment was unanimously affirmed by the Appellate Division - First Department; and ultimately unanimously affirmed in November 2011 by the N.Y. Court of Appeals (in a decision of first impression on the standard for "evident partiality" to be applied by N.Y. state courts under the Federal Arbitration Act). He obtained an arbitration award dismissing a claim for $60 million in alleged lost profits damages on a pre-hearing motion, which was confirmed by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. He also obtained injunctive relief on behalf of a publisher of video games in a landmark decision providing expansive copyright protection for video games. In another case, he obtained a judgment dismissing a claim for $100 million in consequential damages.

Mr. Oberman's experience in alternative dispute resolution proceedings includes service as an arbitrator and a mediator. He is a member of the American Arbitration Association's Large, Complex Commercial Case Panel as well its Commercial Arbitration and Mediation Panels, and of the CPR Panel of Distinguished Neutrals. He is a Fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators and a member of the College's Education Committee. Mr. Oberman was one of the first attorneys chosen as a mediator for the Mandatory Mediation Program of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

In addition to serving as an advocate and as a neutral, Mr. Oberman has written on court and ADR procedures and administration and is active in efforts for court and ADR reform. He has served as a member of Chief Judge Kaye's Commercial Courts Task Force, which created the Commercial Division of the New York Supreme Court, and as a member of the Advisory Committee on Second Circuit Rules and Operating Procedures. Since 1989, he has served as a member of the Executive Committee of the Commercial & Federal Litigation Section of the New York Bar Association and was the Section's Delegate in the New York State Bar Association House of Delegates from 1989-91.  He is also a member of the Dispute Resolution Sections of the American Bar and New York State Bar Associations. In 2009, Mr. Oberman was an invited participant at the National Summit on Business to Business Arbitration held in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Oberman was recognized by New York Super Lawyers from 2006-2014.

Representative Matters

  • One Twelve, Inc. v. Sirius XM Radio Inc. (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cty. Apr. 16, 2012)(granting summary judgment and dismissing with prejudice breach of contract action seeking $330 million brought by Howard Stern's production company and manager; court held that “the clear, unambiguous language” of the parties’ agreement defeated plaintiffs’ claims), aff’d, 2013 WL 1458914 (1st Dep’t Apr. 11, 2013)
  • U.S. Electronics, Inc. v. Sirius Satellite Radio Inc., American Arbitration Association, Case No. 13 133 Y 01107 06, Final Award issued August 27, 2008 (dismissing all claims with prejudice); confirmed by Judgment entered July 7, 2009, Supreme Court, N.Y. County, Index. No. 115867/08, aff'd, 73 A.D.3d 497, 901 N.Y.S.2d 202 (1st Dep't 2010), aff'd, 17 N.Y. 3d 912 (2011). Click here for the brief.
  • Mercer v. Gupta, No. 11 Civ. 3828 (JSR) (S.D.N.Y. Dec. 23, 2011) (granting motion to dismiss claim under §16(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934) aff’d, 2013 WL 1352407 (2d Cir. Apr. 5, 2013)
  • Gupta v. Securities and Exchange Commission, 796 F.Supp. 2d 503 (S.D.N.Y. 2011) (denying SEC's motion to dismiss complaint alleging violations of Constitutional rights)
  • Kaufman v.Sirius XM Radio Inc., 751 F. Supp. 2d 681 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 10, 2010) (dismissing breach of contract claim and narrowing state statutory claim); 2010 WL 4968049 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 22, 2010) (dismissing Third Amended Complaint without prejudice for lack of diversity jurisdiction under Class Action Fairness Act), aff’d, 2012 WL 1109397 (2d Cir. Apr. 4, 2012); No. 650420/13, Decision and Order (Supreme Ct. N.Y. Co., Sept. 18, 2013)(dismissing complaint with prejudice based on statute of limitations and res judicata).
  • In re Parmalat Securities Litigation, 477 F.Supp. 2d 602 (S.D.N.Y. 2007) (dismissing complaint against Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu)
  • In Re The Walt Disney Company Derivative Litigation, Delaware Chancery Court, August 9, 2005; aff'd, 906 A. 2d 27 (Del. Supr. 2006)
  • Advanced Global Technology v. Sirius Satellite Radio, 3/15/07 N.Y. Law Journal at 1; 15 Misc. 3d 776, 836 N.Y.S. 2d 807 (N.Y. Supr. 2007) (dismissing claim for tortious interference with prospective business relations), aff'd in part, modified in part, 44 A.D. 3d 317 (1st Dep't 2007); see also 2008 WL 3996275 (Aug. 20, 2008), 9/4/08 N.Y. Law Journal  Decision of Interest at 26, col. 1 (dismissing amended complaint)
  • Scavenger, Inc. v. GT Interactive Software Corp., 289 A.D. 2d 58, 734 N.Y.S. 2d 141 (1st Dep’t 2001)
  • Best Payphones, Inc. v. Empire State Payphone Ass’n, 272 A.D. 2d 139, 708 N.Y.S. 2d 11 (1st Dep’t 2000)
  • Micro Star v. Formgen Inc., 154 F. 3d 1107 (9th Cir. 1998)
  • Cahn v. Sony Corp., No. 90 Civ. 4537 (S.D.N.Y. 1990-91)(action seeking declaratory and injunctive relief to prevent sale of Sony’s digital audio tape recorder brought on behalf of owners of copyrights in musical compositions licensed by The Harry Fox Agency, Inc. for the making of sound recordings; settled upon terms later incorporated in Audio Home Recording Act of 1992)
  • Orderline Wholesale Distributors., Inc. v. Gibbons Green, van Amerongen, Ltd., 675 F. Supp. 122 (S.D.N.Y. 1987)
  • Mills Music, Inc. v. Snyder, 469 U.S. 153, 105 S. Ct. 638 (1985)
  • City of New York v. Long Island Airport Limousine Service Corp., 62 N.Y. 2d 846, 466 N.E. 2d 153, 477 N.Y.S. 2d 613 (1984)
  • Sony Corp. of Am. V. Universal City Studios, 464 U.S. 417 (1984)(the “Betamax” case)(amicus curiae brief)

J.D., cum laude, Harvard Law School, 1972
  • National First Prize, Nathan Burkan Memorial Competition, 1972
A.B., cum laude, Columbia College, 1969
District of Columbia, 1992
California, 1981
New York, 1973
Honorable Milton Pollack,  U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, 1972 - 1973
U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1993
U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit, 1989
U.S. District Court, Central District of California, 1982
U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, 1982
U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 1981
U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1981
U.S. Supreme Court, 1976
U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 1973
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, 1973
U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, 1973
    -New York State Bar Association, Delegate, 1989-1991, House of Delegates; Member, Committee on Federal Courts, 1977-1989; Member, 1989-present, Executive Committee, Commercial and Federal Litigation Section; Member, 1993-1996, Executive Committee, Intellectual Property Law Section; Member, 2008-, Dispute Resolution Section
    -New York City Bar Association, Member, Committees on: Federal Legislation, 1978-1981, Copyright and Literary Property, 1981-1985, 1988-1991, 1997-2000, 2007-2009
    -American Bar Association, Litigation Section and Dispute Resolution Section
    -The State Bar of California
    -Federal Bar Council
    -Fellow, The New York Bar Foundation
    -Director, Columbia College Alumni Association, 2008-
    -Fellow, College of Commercial Arbitrators
    -Director, New York International Arbitration Center