Scott is a proud Ann Arbor native and University of Michigan alumnus. He provides legal and business solutions to a wide range of clients, while also serving as the firm’s General Counsel.
Over the course of his career, Scott has gained significant experience while immersing himself into a wide variety of legal disciplines. In an era when many lawyers tend to specialize in just two or three areas, Scott offers a distinct advantage to clients in that his expertise is both deep and broad.
His palette of expertise was built handling cases involving just about every kind of law, including insurance, estate planning, employee benefits, contracts, labor, civil rights, products liability, trade secrets, tax, corporate law, administrative law, utilities, environmental, oil and gas, criminal law, class actions, real estate, professional malpractice (attorneys, accountants, physicians, veterinarians, etc.), bankruptcy, education, defamation, sports and entertainment, personal injury, banking, collections, agri-business as well as natural resources.
To date, he has tried more than 60 cases in 25 different jurisdictions and has represented Foster Swift clients in litigation in every county in the lower peninsula and four counties in the upper peninsula. While he serves clients throughout Michigan, many of the client and other professional relationships he has developed over the years derive from his Ann Arbor roots.
Additionally, Scott’s experience uniquely qualifies him to be an effective mediator. He is certified under Supreme Court rules to serve as a Circuit Court Civil Mediator. His range of legal knowledge also led to his selection as the firm's first General Counsel, a position he has held officially since 2006.
Today Scott's practice focuses on:
- Energy Law: Assisting clients with oil and gas, wind power, alternative energy, administrative hearings, litigation, environmental, leasing, land use and matters before the Michigan Public Service Commission and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.
- Law of Lawyering: Counseling attorneys and law firms on the legal aspects to the practice of law including law firm partnership and employment issues, insurance, malpractice, client conflicts, and counseling attorneys on matters before the State Bar of Michigan such as grievances, Bar appeals and attorney discipline.
- Litigation: Representing clients in insurance, professional liability, products liability, contract disputes, intellectual property, trade secrets, personal injury, real estate, employment, civil rights, agri-business, and banking matters in all stages of arbitration, mediation and litigation.
- Construction: Providing legal counsel on construction defects, contracts, permits and licensing, land use and zoning, construction management, insurance and related-litigation.
- Appeals: Developing appellate briefs and oral argument strategies on behalf of clients.
In addition to his diverse professional portfolio, Scott is active in many professional and community organizations and holds a residential builder license for the State of Michigan.
Honors & Recognitions
AV® Preeminent™ Martindale-Hubbell
Best Lawyers in America® 2008-2020 (Commercial Litigation; Litigation - Real Estate; Product Liability Litigation - Defendants)
Best Lawyers® 2019 Litigation-Real Estate "Lawyer of the Year" in Lansing
Michigan Super Lawyers, Energy & Natural Resources, 2013-2019
Memberships & Affiliations
- State Bar of Michigan
- American Bar Association
- Ingham County Bar Association, Former Member, Board of Directors
- Ingham County Bar Foundation
- Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers
- Defense Research Institute
- Michigan Defense Trial Counsel
Industry & Professional Associations:
- Michigan Oil & Gas Association
- Greater Lansing Home Builders Association
- Michigan Association of Home Builders
- National Association of Home Builders
Certifications and Licenses:
- Licensed Residential Builder, State of Michigan
- Certified Circuit Court Mediator
- Provided lead counsel for the oil and gas industry in administrative hearings and testimony that resulting in overhaul of state-wide spacing rules for Antrim gas wells in Michigan.
- Defended successfully four class action matters involving the calculation of royalties on oil and gas and application of Michigan severance tax.
- Investigated trade secret theft matter, identified responsible individuals and successfully prosecuted in civil court.
- Represented successfully a reinsurance company in litigation that culminated in reported appellate decision of "first impression" in Michigan that clarified reinsurer's obligation when reinsured excess carrier contributes to settlement of underlying claim for less than limits of the primary policy.
- Won rare order of "preemptory reversal" in the Michigan Court of Appeals, reinstating a jury verdict of no cause for action in traffic accident case.
- Success in preliminary motions for partial summary judgment allowed a suit brought against our client, alleging claims under the Lanham Act for violation of trademarks and trade dress to be settled favorably for our client.
- Considerations for Solar Land Use Agreements, Foster Swift Agricultural Law News, January 3, 2020
- Review Gift-Giving and Gift-Receiving Policies Before the Holidays, Foster Swift Business & Tax Law News, October 2, 2019
- Avoid Foreign Hackers in 2019, Foster Swift Finance Real Estate & Bankruptcy Law News, November 19, 2018
- The Significance Of Royalty Provisions In Oil And Gas Leases, Foster Swift Agricultural Law Update, February 2012
- Hidden Risks In Land Contracts, Foster Swift Agricultural Law Update, January 2012
- Hydraulic Fracturing In Oil And Gas Development, Foster Swift Agricultural Law Update, January 2012
News & Events
- Understanding Solar Energy Lease Agreements, Michigan Farm Bureau and MSUE, March 14, 2018
- Oil and Gas Exploration and Development in the State of Michigan., Michigan Farm Bureau, August 25, 2011
- Oil & Gas Leasing and Property Rights, Half Moon Inc., March 19, 2009
- Legal Ethics & Law Firm Risk Management, Legal Assistants' Retreat, May 16, 2008
- Oil & Gas Leasing and Production of Oil & Gas in Michigan, Hillsdale County Farm Bureau, February 9, 2008
- 23 Attorneys Selected to 2019 Michigan Super Lawyers and “Rising Stars”, Automation Alley, September 3, 2019
- 42 Foster Swift Attorneys Listed as Best Lawyers® 2020, August 15, 2019
- 31 Foster Swift Attorneys Selected to 2018 Michigan Super Lawyers and “Rising Stars” Lists, September 10, 2018
- 45 Foster Swift Attorneys Listed in Best Lawyers in America© 2019, August 15, 2018
- Six Foster Swift Attorneys Named Best Lawyers® 2019 "Lawyer of the Year", August 15, 2018
- 30 Foster Swift Attorneys Selected to 2017 Michigan Super Lawyers and Rising Stars Lists, September 8, 2017
- 46 Foster Swift Attorneys Named to 2018 Best Lawyers in America®, August 21, 2017
Washington & Lee University School of Law, J.D., 1979
University of Michigan, B.G.S., 1976, with honor
Bar and Court Admissions
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
Bankruptcy Court of the Western District of Arkansas
U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals
U.S. Supreme Court