Award Winning Client Service, Proven Results

Why Choose Barnes & Fersten

You’ve been arrested for DUI or a criminal offense? Now what?


Barnes & Fersten Law Firm’s attorneys and staff work endlessly in an endeavor to accomplish and surpass your goals and expectations in retaining us to represent you in your criminal case. We will not diminish or ignore your feelings because we understand the stress, anxiety, and fear that you are likely facing under the circumstances of facing a serious misdemeanor or felony offense, jail or prison time, probation, potential loss of license and even loss of employment. Instead, we will listen intently while answering your questions and concerns to eliminate or reduce some of your stress, anxiety, and fears.

In retaining us to represent you we want you to put your trust and faith in us, our courtroom and negotiation skills and knowledge of the law, that way you and your family could live your daily lives with as little anxiety of your pending charge(s) as possible knowing that you have expanded your family to include the team of lawyers and staff at Barnes & Fersten who will all work for you and your best interest. 

Payment Plans: We offer payment plans and financing because we do not want your financial situation to prevent you from receiving the highest level of defense that you deserve. Your criminal case has real-life effects on your life, family’s life, job, well-being, license, and your freedom from the confines of a jail or prison. You should not have to face the harsh consequences of the allegations against you simply because you did not save up for the unknown situation of having to hire a criminal defense attorney. That is why we work with you on setting up a payment plan that is affordable so we can provide the highest quality of representation at a fair and reasonable price.

Awards: Our Partners John Barnes and Brandon Fersten have won numerous awards for their zealous representation of our clients in DUI and criminal defense cases. Both John and Brandon were named Best Lawyers’ Ones to Watch and Top 40 Under 40 Criminal Defense lawyers. Additionally, Barnes & Fersten have been recognized as a top 3 DUI law firm in Knoxville. Our attorneys travel the nation to attend seminars and training sessions to continually learn how to better serve our clients and fight for our clients inside and outside of the courtroom.

Our mission statements and values include:

  • Professional service with a personalized team approach:
    • We learn everything about your case, the circumstances surrounding it, and how you got into the situation you are facing whether it is because of something that occurred during your childhood, a traumatic experience, or substance abuse. In some cases, we may recommend treatment or certain rehabilitation programs that will be beneficial to both your legal and your personal life. For example, in a DUI case we may recommend an alcohol and drug assessment, victim impact panel, or DUI school. The alcohol and drug assessment is a meeting with a therapist who specializes in recognizing substance abuse. As a specialist, the therapist can recommend treatment or write a letter concluding that there is no substance abuse issue which helps relieve the prosecutor’s concern that you may commit DUI again in the future.
  • Teamwork makes (our clients’) dreams work:
    • All our attorneys and staff work together as a collective team to provide each client with the highest quality criminal defense representation through our aggressiveness and negotiation skills. This means unlike other law firms that may only have 1 lawyer defend your case, multiple of our attorneys, plus our staff and potentially a private investigator in some cases, will listen to any 911 calls, review the dash camera and/or body camera footage, research applicable law for your defense, and meet to discuss the best strategy to surpass your expectations in retaining representation.
    • We believe that power in numbers is true when it comes to your criminal case. We provide a team approach because we believe that having multiple of our highly trained attorneys, rather than just 1 attorney, provides you the best chance at obtaining the best outcome possible in your case either through a dismissal or a reduction in the charges against you.
  • Results Driven to Win Your Case:
    • Our longstanding success as a law firm is attributed to our results driven mentality. Our attorneys are competitive and that competitive nature results in our attorneys fighting for your rights and your freedom through the drive to do everything possible to defend you and make your situation as good as possible under the circumstances.
  • People not criminals:
    • You are more than the mugshot photo taken of you at booking. Regardless of the allegations against you, you are not a criminal but a person who needs our help to increase the likelihood of a successful future. A person with real-life experiences that may have put you in your current situation. But also, a person who can learn from this tragic and unfortunate situation through the advocacy of the lawyers at Barnes & Fersten fighting for you.
  • Protect our House (Firm)/Family First:
    • We do everything we can for our people whether it is our clients, our attorneys, or our staff. We view our law firm as a small family that grows day by day through establishing new professional and personal relationships with our clients. Just like you would do anything for your parents or siblings, we will do anything and everything for the people in “our house” or firm.
    • We treat our clients with the same kindness, respect, and even tough love that they would if it was a family member. Tough love means not necessarily telling you what you want to hear throughout your case but what you need to hear to make an educated and informed decision. There is no benefit to hiring a lawyer who will make false promises to you. You need to understand what you are up against to make the best decision for your future.
    • People have difficulty trusting individuals outside of their family, especially with their secrets and discussing childhood or adult hardships. We create real connections and relationships with each of our clients, so they can trust us with those secrets, and open up to us about their life hardships to provide us with the knowledge we need to provide the highest quality representation.
    • We believe it is because of this value that we have won awards as a 5-star DUI and criminal defense law firm. Our client reviews are proof where our clients routinely let us know they feel like we became part of their family through our representation and empathetic approach where we truly care about each of our clients.


What Our Clients Say

Meet Our Team

Brandon Fersten

Brandon provides exceptional legal advice and legal services to our DUI, criminal defense and juvenile defense clients.

Oscar Butler

Associate Attorney
Oscar Butler began with Barnes & Fersten in 2023, following a 4 year career as an ADA

Tim Marohn

Intake Coordinator
As the intake coordinator, Tim is responsible for making sure that the client experience is top-notch.

Lauren Bledsoe

Office Manager
Lauren is the one who most likely answers your call to ensure that your needs are being met.