Nathan S. Smith partners with clients to navigate the complex intersection of innovation, business, and the law. Nate builds teams to conduct IP due diligence on behalf of clients interested in acquiring, defending, or enforcing intellectual property and technology. He helps his clients develop and implement competitive market strategies, complete IP transactions and licensing, and oversee domestic and foreign patent prosecution for utility and design protection. Whether for startup or large-cap companies, from product conception to market release, Nate leverages various tools and strategies to efficiently build value and protect the interests of his clients.
Nathan has technical experience managing IP for a variety of technologies, with a focus on the life sciences and technology industries, and is a co-leader of the IP MedTech Working Group. He has handled matters involving medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and therapies related to eye care, medical aesthetics, cardiology, heart valve replacement, neurovascular disorders, orthopedics, dental implants, spinal fixation, gastroenterology, and women’s health. Nate also has technical experience managing IP for various other clients in areas including eyewear, personal electronics, oil and gas, software, automotive, agriculture and grain management, and aeronautics.
Nathan also strives to balance his practice by devoting himself to pro bono work. He has personally represented victims of domestic violence and their families in obtaining nonimmigrant status, assisted a foundation that provides therapy to children whose families are unable to afford treatment for autism spectrum disorder, assisted a foundation that cares for mothers of children with disabilities and survivors of grief and trauma, and assisted a foundation that provides therapeutic activity for individuals diagnosed with cystic fibrosis.
Nathan has authored various articles and hosted a podcast related to developments in IP in the United States and globally. Additionally, he has spoken at events and on panels on topics involving international IP filing strategies, IP portfolio management, technical aspects of the America Invents Act, and administrative trials before the US Patent and Trademark Office, such as inter partes review.
While in law school, Nathan was a judicial extern for Chief Judge Randall R. Rader at the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. He is fluent in English, Portuguese, and Spanish.
Counsel for patent owner WobbleWorks, which resulted in denial of institution of IPR in the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Ditec Solutions, LLC et al v. WobbleWorks, Inc., IPR2018-01414)
Represented pharmaceutical client in IP due diligence of various medical device and pharmaceutical technologies
Led victorious global prosecution and enforcement efforts, across several countries, for a consumer products client
Defended IP due diligence on behalf of AqueSys, Inc., in connection with its acquisition by Allergan plc for a $300 million upfront payment and regulatory approval and commercialization milestone payments
Defended IP due diligence on behalf of a medical device client in connection with its successful $85 million initial public offering outside the United States
Defended IP due diligence on behalf of AqueSys, Inc., in a $43.6 million Series D financing led by an undisclosed investor, with participation from Accuitive Medical Ventures, The Carlyle Group, Longitude Capital, Rho Ventures, and SV Life Sciences
Defended IP due diligence on behalf of ArtVentive Medical Group, Inc., in a $5 million financing led by an undisclosed investor
Represented a medical device client in the acquisition of another medical device company for more than $70 million
Represented a medical device client in the acquisition of a cardiovascular medical device company
Represented a medical device client in IP due diligence of a target cardiovascular device company
Brigham Young University, J. Reuben Clark Law School, 2004, J.D., BYU Law Review
Brigham Young University, 2001, B.S., Mechanical Engineering
US Patent and Trademark Office
Awards and Affiliations
Member, Practice Group of the Year, Intellectual Property, Law360 (2019)
Member, Litigation Department of the Year–Intellectual Property, The American Lawyer (2019)
Recommended, Intellectual property: Patents: licensing, The Legal 500 US (2019)
Recommended, Intellectual property: Patents: prosecution (including re-examination and post-grant proceedings), The Legal 500 US (2019, 2020)
Recognized, IAM Patent 1000: World’s Leading Patent Professionals (2018–2023)
Rising Star, Intellectual Property, Southern California Super Lawyers (2015, 2016)
Recognized, Intellectual Property Top Attorneys, Coast Magazine (2015)
Recognized, Intellectual Property Top Attorneys, OC Metro Magazine (2011–2014)
Wiley W. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services, State Bar of California (2013)
Supervising Attorney, UC Irvine School of Law Pro Bono Program
Member, American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA)
Member, Orange County Bar Association
Former Member of Board of Directors, J. Reuben Clark Law Society