Unreported Opinions//February 13, 2023
//February 13, 2023
Civil litigation — Counterclaim — Res judicata
Maryland’s Rules provide for permissive—not mandatory—counterclaims. As a result, Maryland courts have modified the doctrine of res judicata so that it does not impose on a party’s right to choose whether to bring a counterclaim.
James Summers and Dr. Steven Snyder own a home. They entered into a contract with Beltway Builders, Inc. for home remodeling. After a dispute about performance, Beltway did not complete the project and the homeowners did not pay the full contract amount. Beltway filed suit against the homeowners for breach of contract and unjust enrichment. The homeowners filed a counterclaim against Beltway alleging breach of contract.