Suing the Lawuer Who Drafted a Will In Michigan
In Mieras v. DeBona, 452 Mich. 278; 550 N.W.2d 202 (1996), the Supreme Court of Michigan held "that beneficiaries named in a will may bring a tort-based cause of action against the attorney who drafted the will for negligent breach of the standard of care owed to the beneficiary by nature of the beneficiary's third-party beneficiary status." Mieras, 452 Mich. at 308 (opinion by Boyle, J.).
Recognizing that the imposition of such a duty ran counter to the general rule that "'"an attorney will be held liable for . . . negligence only to his client,"'" 452 Mich. at 298, the Court indicated that this duty would be "narrowly circumscribed . . . ." 452 Mich. at 302.
"The duty owed to named beneficiaries," the Court observed "only requires the attorney to draft a will that properly effectuates the distribution scheme set forth by the testator in the will." Id.