Another action filed in the same lawsuit or claim by a defendant who has a claim against the plaintiff or someone else. Also known as a Cross-Complaint or Counteraction.
Merriam-Webster Online Dictionarycounterclaim (noun)
an opposing claim , especially a claim brought by a defendant against a plaintiff in a legal action
to enter or plead a counterclaim to ask in a counterclaim
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The examples and perspective in this article deal primarily with the United States and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (January 2018)
In a court of law, a party's claim is a counterclaim if one party asserts claims in response to the claims of another. In other words, if a plaintiff initiates a lawsuit and a defendant responds to the lawsuit with claims of their own against the plaintiff, the defendant’s claims are “counterclaims.”
Examples of counterclaims include:
- After a bank has sued a customer for an unpaid debt, the customer counterclaims (sues back) against the bank for fraud in procuring the debt. The court will sort out the different claims in one lawsuit (unless the claims are severed).
- Two cars collide. After one person sues for damage to his/her car and personal injuries, the defendant counterclaims for similar property damage and personal injury claims.