Scott M. Smith, M.D.

3200 IDS Center, 80 South Eighth Street
Minneapolis, MN 55402
D: 612.766.6007
Contact My Assistant
Juliana M. Hoffman


University of Arizona College of Medicine
   M.D., 2001

The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law
   J.D., 1994
   Editor, Ohio State Law Journal

Northwestern University
   B.A., 1991

Bar Admissions

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Professional Affiliations

Stanford Biodesign Program Guest Lecturer and Mentor, 2010 - present
StartX Med Mentor Board Member, 2010 - present

Publications & Speaking

Successfully Navigating IP Due Diligence – Panel Discussion with Tom Ressemann (CEO, Amphora Medical) and Josh Baltzell (Venture Partner, SightLine Partners) - Dorsey 4D Symposium (Palo Alto, California, September 2016)

Managing Through Adversity – Interview of Paul Buckman (CEO, Conventus Orthopaedics, Inc.) - Dorsey 4D Symposium (Palo Alto, California, October 2014)

International Intellectual Property Strategy, Panel Moderator, International Bar Association Seminar (Menlo Park, California, November 2012)

Strategy for Dealing with the America Invents Act, Panel Moderator, IP Impact Silicon Valley Seminar (Palo Alto, California, October 2012)

Launch to Exit: Maximizing IP Value, Panel Speaker, Connect Frameworks Seminar (San Diego, California, April 2011)

Due Diligence: A Thorough Examination of an Integral Piece of M&A, Panel Speaker, Q1 Second Annual Medical Device Mergers & Acquisitions Conference (San Mateo, California, April 2011)


How To Avoid The Top 5 IP Mistakes Startups Make, IP360, March 13, 2014

When and How To Consider Hiring In-House IP CounselIP360, May 16, 2013

Top 5 Reasons To Audit Your Patent Portfolio In 2013IP360, March 8, 2013


Valley Speak: Deciphering the Jargon of Silicon Valley, by Rochelle Kopp and Steven Ganz, Genetius Publishing, 2017. Scott Smith is quoted in the IP chapter, p. 39:

"Company founders should talk about IP early and often. They should teach company employees about the importance of IP and how it works, or better yet, they should ask their IP attorney to teach them." - Scott Smith, Partner, Merchant & Gould


Scott is an M.D. and registered patent attorney who has spent nearly two decades advising medical device companies and the investors who fund them. Having worked as both outside counsel to companies in all stages of development and in-house counsel at several highly successful medical device companies, Scott brings an insider’s perspective and unique skill set to his medical device clients.

In addition to his company-side work, Scott has extensive experience conducting IP due diligence. As in-house counsel, he helped sell Acclarent’s IP portfolio to Johnson & Johnson, as part of the company’s $780M acquisition. He has guided venture capital firms and his clients through countless rounds of funding, always focusing on the issues that truly matter.  

Scott began his practice in Silicon Valley and is resident in both the Minneapolis and Silicon Valley offices of Merchant & Gould. He has assisted medical device clients in a wide range of specialties, including otolaryngology (ENT), pulmonology, spine, orthopedics, cardiology, cardiothoracic surgery, neurology, neurosurgery, ophthalmology, gastroenterology, women's health, robotic surgery, obesity and orthodontics.

Prior to joining Merchant & Gould, Scott practiced patent law as a partner in an AmLaw 100 firm and previously served in leadership IP roles at Silicon Valley medical device companies Acclarent, Pulmonx, Baxano, and Align Technology.

In his spare time, Scott runs marathons and the occasional shorter race, in an attempt to keep up with his two children.