Articles Posted in Trademarks

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In 2000, a fire destroyed a business location of Stone Flood and Fire Restoration Inc., spurring years of litigation with its insurer, Safeco Insurance Company of America. After Stone Flood and its two shareholders, James and Patrice Stone, sued Safeco in 2007, the district court dismissed all claims against Safeco. The court concluded (1) Stone Flood's claims on the insurance policy were filed three days beyond the applicable statute of limitations and were therefore barred; (2) the Stones were not insureds and lacked standing to bring individual claims under the policy; and (3) the Stones lacked standing to bring a claim of intentional infliction of emotional distress (IIED) because their alleged injuries were merely derivative of the corporation's. The Supreme Court reversed in part and affirmed in part, holding (1) the district court's calculation of the tolling of the limitations period was incorrect and a correct calculation saved Stone Flood's claims under the insurance policy; and (2) the district court properly concluded the Stones were not insureds and lacked standing to sue under the policy, and their claim of IIED failed for lack of a distinct, non-derivative injury. Remanded.View "Stone Flood & Fire Restoration, Inc. v. Safeco Ins. Co." on Justia Law

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Appellants sued GLC and SGI asserting trademark infringement, deceptive trade practices, and breach of contract stemming from GLC's "Money Bags" lottery games of 2005 and 2007. At issue was whether the Court of Appeals erred in finding that GLC was entitled to assert sovereign immunity as a bar to a suit raising claims that arose outside the Georgia Tort Claims Act and whether the Court of Appeals erred in finding that OCGA 10-1-440 required the bona fide use of a trademark to make out a claim concerning the trademark's infringement? The court held that because sovereign immunity applied to state instrumentalities, GLC was entitled to assert sovereign immunity as a defense in this case. The court also held that there was no error in the interpretation of OCGA 10-1-440(b) by the Court of Appeals where appellants have not made "bona fide" use of their MONEYBAG$ mark in commerce sufficient to establish protectable rights in the mark. Accordingly, the judgment was affirmed.View "Kyle, et al. v. Georgia Lottery Corp., et al." on Justia Law