Counterclaim(redirected from counterclaimant)
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in civil procedure, an independent actionable claim of the defendant against the plaintiff, filed with the court or the arbitration tribunal in a pending suit to be considered simultaneously with the original action. A counterclaim is a means of defense of the defendant against the action directed against him. In Soviet law it is admitted to the proceedings if it is aimed at offsetting the original action, if satisfaction of the counterclaim would fully or partially exclude satisfaction of the original action, or if there is an interrelationship between the counterclaim and the original action, and their simultaneous consideration would result in a more prompt and just hearing of the disputes. A counterclaim, regardless of the jurisdiction to which it is subject and in accordance with the general rules of bringing an action, is instituted in the court considering the original claim.
According to the legislation of the RSFSR and several other union republics, the defendant has the right to bring a counterclaim against the plaintiff before the court renders a decision on the original action. According to the legislation of the Ukrainian SSR, the defendant may bring a counterclaim no later than three days before the court session set for consideration of the original action. Acceptance of a counter-claim filed after the expiration of this term depends on the discretion of the judge. If a counterclaim was brought during consideration of the case on its merits, its acceptance depends on the court’s discretion.
In arbitration proceedings the defendant may bring a counterclaim before the beginning of consideration of the case on its merits. In arbitration procedure a counterclaim may be consolidated with the original action if the defendant observed the prescribed order of settling his claims against the plaintiff before turning to the arbitration tribunal and if there is a direct relationship between the counterclaim and the original action. Consolidation of the counterclaim with the original action contributes to a more complete and just consideration of the mutual rights and obligations of plaintiff and defendant in the examination and deciding of civil disputes.
P. P. GUREEV