Scott McKay practices criminal defense and civil litigation in Idaho and in courts throughout the United States. He has a wide breadth of litigation and trial experience and has successfully represented clients in a number of significant cases.
Mr. McKay has defended clients charged with nearly every type of state and federal crime from first degree murder to white collar offenses such as health care fraud, tax offenses, wire and bank fraud and environmental crimes. He has been involved in several cases that involve issues of national security including assisting a "high value detainee" in capital proceedings before the Military Commissions at the United States Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. In 2005, Mr. McKay received the Clarence Darrow Award from the ACLU of Idaho and the Gargoyle Award from the Idaho Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers for his successful defense of a foreign national acquitted of all terrorism charges following a lengthy trial in federal court.
Mr. McKay also works on complex civil cases and has successfully represented plaintiffs and defendants alike in a variety of contexts and courts. He has helped achieve multi-million dollar settlements for clients including settlements on behalf of a child and his parents who brought suit against the physicians and hospital responsible for the child's catastrophic birth injuries and on behalf of employees of a large retail grocery chain who brought suit in multi-state collective and class wage and hour actions. He actively represents individuals and surviving family members of individuals seriously harmed by the negligence or wrongful conduct of others. Mr. McKay also has successfully defended clients sued in federal and state courts. Recently, he achieved the outright dismissal of his client from the complex multi-district federal litigation consolidated in New York arising out of the attacks of September 11, 2001. This dismissal followed years of litigation, motion practice and appeals.
Mr. McKay has an AV rating, the highest rating available from the Martindale-Hubbell lawyer rating service. He has been selected by his peers each year since 2003 for listing in "The Best Lawyers in America" and is presently listed as such in both white collar and general criminal defense. Mr. McKay has been listed in Mountain States Super Lawyers Magazine each year since it was first published in 2007. This publication features the top 5% of lawyers in Nevada, Utah, Montana, Idaho and Wyoming.
Mr. McKay has been admitted to practice in Idaho, California and before the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and various district courts throughout the country. He also was admitted to the pool of civilian defense counsel qualified to practice before the U.S. Military Commissions.
Mr. McKay graduated magna cum laude from Gonzaga University School of Law where he was a Thomas More Scholar and associate editor of the Gonzaga Law Review. Following law school, he served as a law clerk to the late Honorable Byron J. Johnson and the Honorable Linda Copple Trout, Justices (Ret.), Idaho Supreme Court. He obtained his undergraduate degree in business management and accounting from Whitworth College where he graduated cum laude.
Mr. McKay has appeared on national television as a legal commentator and in a variety of media outlets. He lectures frequently to lawyers, students and community groups on legal topics. Mr. McKay is a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and serves on its National Security Committee. He is a lifetime member of the Idaho Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He serves on a number of legal committees including the Judicial Fairness Committee for the Idaho State Bar and the Technology Committee and the Electronic Records Committee for the Idaho Supreme Court. He actively volunteers in the local community and has coached a variety of youth sports over the years. Mr. McKay formerly served on the Magistrate Commission for the Fourth Judicial District, as Chair of the Young Lawyers Section for the Idaho State Bar and on the Board of Directors for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Southwest Idaho after serving several years as a volunteer Big Brother. Mr. McKay is an active outdoorsman. He and his wife Nicole have three children.
Practice Areas: Criminal Defense and Civil Litigation
- J.D. (Magna Cum Laude) Gonzaga University School of Law, 1990; Thomas More Scholar, Associate Editor, Gonzaga Law Review
- B.A. (Cum Laude) Business Management and Accounting, Whitworth College, 1986
- Law Clerk - Honorable Byron J. Johnson, 1990-91, and Honorable Linda Copple Trout, 1992-93, Justices (Ret.), Idaho Supreme Court
- Bar Admissions: Idaho; California; U.S. Supreme Court; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho; U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Admitted pro hac vice in various courts throughout the United States.