Matthew J. Lager
Matt is a partner at Bernard Stuczynski Barnett & Lager.
Matt Lager is a lifelong Pennsylvania resident, having lived in Bucks, Centre, and Erie counties. As an undergraduate, he attended The Pennsylvania State University’s main campus for four years, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in biology. Afterward, he went on to earn his Juris Doctor degree from The Pennsylvania State University, The Dickinson School of Law, where he graduated in the top third of his class. Matt is our firm’s youngest partner and has been named by Erie Reader as one of Erie’s “40 Under 40.”
While at Penn State Law, Matt was a member of the Rural Economic Development Clinic and was recognized as a Public Interest Advocate for providing free legal assistance to small businesses in rural communities throughout the state. He also represented Penn State Law at the National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition in New York. Before graduating, Matt was awarded the “CALI Excellence for the Future Award for Excellent Achievement in the Study of Workers’ Compensation Law.”
Prior to joining Bernard Stuczynski & Barnett, Matt spent a summer serving as an interning law clerk to The Honorable Frank Palumbo of the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, where he drafted judicial opinions for appeals to Pennsylvania’s Superior and Commonwealth courts.
Since joining the firm in 2012, Matt has focused his practice on Workers’ Compensation, Car Accidents, Personal Injury, and Social Security Disability law. He has quickly become recognized by his peers and colleagues as an excellent advocate and has been invited onto several committees in the Erie County Bar Association. Matt has negotiated a number of substantial settlements for his clients and prides himself on always going the extra mile. Additionally, Matt is committed to providing pro bono legal services through the Erie County Bar Association’s “LAVA” program, his participation in which has earned him awards from both the Pennsylvania Bar Association and the Erie County Bar Association. In 2017, Matt was added as a Partner of the firm. Beginning in 2018, Matt began serving on the Erie County Bar Association’s Board of Directors for a three-year term (that ended up lasting four years).
When Matt isn’t working, he loves spending time with his three sons and his wife (and high school sweetheart), who is an attorney at Northwestern Legal Services, providing free legal aid to the residents of Erie County who can’t otherwise afford it.
- Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 2012
- State of New Jersey, 2012
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, 2012
- United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, 2022
The Pennsylvania State University, The Dickinson School of Law, University Park, Pennsylvania
- Juris Doctor, 2012
The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania
- Bachelor of Science, Biology, 2009
- Survey Protocol Me Maybe: Why Survey Protocols Will Help Better Determine the Presence or Absence of Endangered Species , Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, Fall 2012, University of California, Davis, School of Law, 36 Environs Envtl. L. & Pol’y J. 65 , 2012.
- Wheeler v. Comm’r of Soc. Sec., Civil Action No. 16-231-E, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 162113 (W.D. Pa. Sep. 29, 2017).
- Hrnjic v. Berryhill, Civil Action No. 1:16-302, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11607 (W.D. Pa. Jan. 24, 2018).
- Reitz v. Berryhill, No. 3:18-CV-921, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 179755 (M.D. Pa. Oct. 19, 2018).
- Komorek v. Commissioner of Social Security, Civil Action No. 1:20-34 (W.D. Pa. Mar. 30, 2021).
Honors and Awards
- SuperLawyers, Rising Star, 2018–2022
- Erie Reader’s 2018 “40 Under 40”
- Pennsylvania Bar Association Pro Bono Award for Erie County, 2017
- Outstanding Pro Bono Lawyer, The Erie County Bar Association, Legal Aid Volunteer Attorneys Program, 2017
- CALI Excellence for the Future Award for Excellent Achievement in the Study of Workers’ Compensation Law, 2012
- Miller Public Interest Advocate, 2012
- Workers’ Compensation From The Injured Worker’s Perspective: Thoughts From A Claimant’s Attorney, 2017
- Guest Lecturer at Penn State Law, Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation, Fall 2017
- Social Security Disability and SSI, ECBA Speakers Bureau, 2019
- Guest Lecturer at Penn State Law, Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation, Fall 2019
*If you would like to schedule Attorney Lager to speak at your event or establishment, please contact our office to make arrangements.
Professional Associations and Memberships
- Erie County Bar Associations, Board of Directors, Secretary, 2018–2021
- Erie County Bar Association
- Pennsylvania Bar Association
- Western Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association
- Pennsylvania Association for Justice, Member
- Pennsylvania Association for Justice, Board of Governors (2018–2019)
- ECBA Solo/Small Firms Division, 2017 Chair
- ECBA Young Lawyers Division, Leadership Committee, 2017