The design, fabrication, and characterization of a polymeric optical spot-size transformer with vertical and lateral tapers is reported. The vertical taper is formed by utilizing the planarization properties of a polymer, while the lateral taper is defined by photolithography. An optimization method for the taper shape is described based on fundamental results from coupled local mode theory. A total fiber to waveguide insertion loss of 0.6 dB has been measured with the integration of the transformer, an improvement of 2.1 dB. The spatial alignment tolerance for 1 dB excess loss was measured to ±2.7μm, consistent with theory.