Reed Smith Client Alerts

The Pennsylvania Superior Court’s recent opinion in Fulton Bank v. Sandquist expanded the reach of possible liability for negligent misrepresentation beyond architects and design professionals.1 In Fulton Bank v. Sandquist, the court expanded the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s seminal ruling in Bilt-Rite Contractors v. The Architectural Studio2 to include potential liability for accountants and their firms under a theory of negligent misrepresentation for providing professional information that is designed to be relied upon by a third party. This extension could, arguably, apply to any professional service provider in Pennsylvania, where the information provided is intended to be relied upon by third parties.

Authors: Ericson P. Kimbel

Type: Client Alerts

In reversing the trial court’s dismissal of the negligent misrepresentation claim by Fulton Bank against Barry L. Spevak and Downey Spevak & Associates, the Superior Court explained that Bilt-Rite’s applicability is not limited to factual scenarios involving only negligent misrepresentation claims against an architect or similar design professionals. The court stated:

We find the court applied a too narrow reading to Bilt-Rite in determining that the case only concerns disputes involving an architect/contractor scenario. Rather, we conclude Bilt-Rite can be applied to other factual scenarios where a party is providing professional information that is designed to be relied upon by a third party.

Fulton Bank, N.A. v. Sandquist, 2017 WL 4284923, at *8.