Fighting the good fight
Matthew E. Lee
Whitfield Bryson LLP
900 W. Morgan Street
Raleigh, NC 27603
Matthew Lee is a partner at Whitfield Bryson LLP and, for the last 10 years, has focused his practice on fighting for people who need help. Too often, a large corporation will run roughshod over the rights of people who look up one day to find the deck stacked against them with nowhere to turn. Matt takes great pride in being part of a firm that’s committed to standing shoulder to shoulder with its clients to fight and win these battles against some of the largest companies in the world.
Matt earned his law degree from Wake Forest University School of Law in 2006 and his Bachelor of Arts from The Catholic University of America, cum laude, in 2001. While at Wake Forest, Matt was the 2005 Zeliff Trial Competition Champion, a regional finalist at the 2006 American Association for Justice (AAJ) Trial Advocacy Competition, the AAJ Student Chapter President, and was selected as a member of the Order of Barristers. In addition, Matt spent several months clerking for the United States Attorney’s Office in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Matt is a graduate of Leadership Raleigh 25 with the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce and co-chair of the American Association for Justice (AAJ) Trial Advocacy Competition in Raleigh, NC.
Matt handles complex litigation, primarily major employment disputes, product liability, business disputes, and wrongful death cases, and has secured substantial verdicts and settlements in a variety of matters, including multi-million dollar verdicts and large settlements in a number of cases. Matt has been recognized as a leader nationally and was, among other things, appointed to the Plaintiffs Steering Committee in Multi-District Litigation No. 2688 In Re: Windsor Wood Clad Window Products Liability Litigation.
Matt and his team recently won a major victory in the firm’s ongoing battle against IBM and it’s bait-and-switch “uncapped” commissions scheme. On October 11, 2019, a California federal court judge denied IBM’s motion for summary judgment, finding cause for a jury to decide whether IBM had defrauded its sales employee when it promised uncapped commissions and later refused to pay him his full commissions. The matter was settled a few weeks later to the parties’ mutual satisfaction.
- State of North Carolina
- State of Florida
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina
- U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina
- U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida
- Selected to North Carolina Super Lawyers, 2020
- Selected to North Carolina Super Lawyers Rising Stars, 2012-2019
- Selected for inclusion in Business North Carolina Legal Elite, 2014-2016
- American Association for Justice Student Trial Advocacy Competition Raleigh Regional, Co-Chair, 2012 – 2019
- American Association for Justice Student Trial Advocacy National Trial Competition, Co-Chair, 2018
- Legal Aid of North Carolina, Pro Bono attorney with NCBA’s Lawyer on the Line Project
- American Association for Justice
- North Carolina Association for Justice
- Public Justice Foundation
- Wake County Bar Association
- North Carolina Association for Justice, Product Liability and Construction Defect Committee, Secretary, 2017 – Present
- CAM Raleigh (Contemporary Art Museum), Board of Directors, 2018 – present
- 12 Angry Men (and Women), NCBA Construction Law Section Annual Meeting, October 2016
- Insurance: Covered v. Uncovered, National Business Institute, Construction Defect Litigation from A to Z CLE Seminar, Raleigh, NC, May 2015
- Using Forensic Engineering Information in Litigation, HalfMoon Seminars, Structural Forensic Engineering Seminar, Chapel Hill, NC, October 2014
- Nuts and Bolts of Trying a Construction Defect Case, North Carolina Bar Association, 2013 NC/SC Construction Law Sections Annual Meeting, Asheville, NC, September 2013
- Wake Forest University School of Law: J.D., 2006
- The Catholic University of America: B.A. Cum Laude, 2001
- November 2019: Confidential Settlement for an IBM sales representative in CA whose commissions we alleged were illegally capped.
- October 2019: Won the summary judgment battle with IBM in Swafford v. IBM in CA federal court. To the best of our knowledge, the resulting order denying summary judgment to IBM to the entire extent that the firm opposed it was the first of its kind around the country.
- October 2019: Confidential settlement for $21 million in a defective condominium construction case.
- April 2019: Confidential settlement for another IBM sales employee in NC whose commissions we alleged were illegally capped.
- August 2018: Won verdict and judgment we value at over $1 million, with hundreds of thousands more in punitive damages awarded by the jury, after a two week jury trial in New Hanover County for an LLC member who’d been illegally ousted from the companies by his business partners.
- July 2018: Confidential settlement for an IBM sales employee in NC whose commissions we alleged were illegally capped.
- February 2013: Won a $1.39 million verdict after a three week jury trial in Madisonville, Kentucky on behalf of a church and a business against two coal companies for causing subsidence to their properties.
- June 2012: Won a verdict and judgment of over $3 million after a three week jury trial in Wilmington, North Carolina involving a contractor’s defective construction of marine bulkhead.
- February 2011: Won a verdict and judgment in excess of $3.5 million after a two week jury trial involving developer’s deceptive advertising and shoddy construction of subdivision roads in the mountains of Western North Carolina.
- Secured several confidential seven-figure settlements in commercial and residential construction defect disputes.
- Speaker, “Keeping the Lights on with Construction Litigation,” March 2019
- Speaker, “12 Angry Men (and Women),” North Carolina Bar Association, 2016 NC Construction Law Section Annual Meeting, New Bern, NC, September 30 – October 1, 2016
- Speaker, “Construction Defect Litigation for Paralegals,” 2015 Raleigh-Wake Paralegal Association Annual Seminar, Raleigh, NC, October 9, 2015
- Speaker, “Insurance: Covered v. Uncovered” and “Construction Case Law Update,” National Business Institute, Construction Defect Litigation from A to Z CLE Seminar, Raleigh, NC, May 18, 2015
- Co-speaker, “Using Forensic Engineering Information in Litigation,” HalfMoon Seminars, Structural Forensic Engineering Seminar, Chapel Hill, NC, October 21, 2014
- Co-speaker, “Nuts and Bolts of Trying a Construction Defect Case,” North Carolina Bar Association, 2013 NC/SC Construction Law Sections Annual Meeting, Asheville, NC, September 27-28, 2013
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"[We] applaud the efforts of… Whitfield Bryson LLP, who defend the rights of consumers and fight to hold major companies accountable for the products they produce.”