The Ohio State University
To whom does a professional owe a duty of care when providing professional services?1 The traditional answer, grounded in principles of contractual privity, is that professionals are liable for negligence to their clients, and perhaps to third-party beneficiaries of the client-professional relationship, but that their noncontractual obligations generally extend no further than a duty not to commit fraud.2 In the past two decades, however, courts have become increasingly willing to hold a wide range of professionals liable for their negligence to parties outside the chain of privity. 3 The accompanying growth of third-party4 lawsuits alleging professional negligence and in particular alleging negligent misrepresentation by accountants or attorneys, raises serious questions for professionals concerning their legal and ethical obligations to nonclients.
Gary S. Lawson & Tamara Mattison,
A Tale of Two Professions: The Third-Party Liability of Accountants and Attorneys for Negligent Misrepresentation
Ohio State Law Journal
Available at: https://scholarship.law.bu.edu/faculty_scholarship/2546