It is a judicial term that is used to call the process in which the defendant responds to the demand with another of equal magnitude or that directly attacks the plaintiff. In this way, the response of the defendant to whom an investigation and subsequent trial is opened suggests the creation of an opposing set of actions in favor of the accused. By counterclaiming the defendant, he is not only defining a claim against the one already imposed, but also ensuring that he is innocent of what he is accused of.

The counterclaim is an independent claim to the one originally imposed, but it is part of the same process. The response must be in writing and at the time it is received by the court the counterclaim process is considered. The court that initially received the first claim must be prepared to resolve the second claim.

For a counterclaim to be effective, it must meet a series of requirements that we will mention below:

  • The defendant must request a release from the charges imposed in the original lawsuit.
    The demand must be mutual from the counterclaim, now both are plaintiffs and defendants.
  • The judge must be competent in counterclaims, effectively distinguishing between civil and commercial matters.
  • The interest of the person executing the counterclaim must be direct against the original claim.
  • This process can last days, between response and response, each legislation establishes minimum and maximum time intervals before the claim is dismissed due to lack of a reply or response.