According to a recent ruling by the Illinois Supreme Court, duties and responsibilities of a design professional in Illinois are limited to the scope of the contract and cannot be expanded by outside testimony. The Supreme Court of Illinois in Thompson v. Gordon recently reversed the Appellate Court's decision and affirmed the circuit court's decision in holding that the scope of a design professional's duty was "circumscribed by the terms of the contract" and that expert testimony could not be used to expand that duty. In so holding, the Illinois Supreme Court affirmed a victory for design professionals in the state by ensuring that their duties cannot be expanded outside the terms of the contract. The Supreme Court's opinion should serve as a precaution to all parties involved in drafting and executing construction contracts with respect to the terms used in defining a party's scope of work.
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