The Georgia Supreme Court has ruled against two men who sought $5 million in damages from the Georgia Lottery Corporation in a lawsuit over the "MONEYBAGS$" logo.
The suit was filed by George Kyle, who obtained a registered trademark for the "MONEYBAG$" logo and game in 1995, and Frank Mankovitch, whom Kyle had been given the exclusive right to market the game. The logo consisted of a velvet pouch containing wooden tiles.
From 1999 to 2002, the Georgia Lottery obtained approval to use Kyle's trademark for use in games, including scratch-off tickets. In 2005 and 2007, however, Scientific Games, which prints the tickets for the Georgia Lottery, did not seek Kyle's permission to use the logo again, the court's ruling said.
The Georgia Lottery went ahead with the game and grossed profits of $2.4 million in 2005 and $2.6 million in 2007. Kyle and Mankovitch filed a trademark infringement suit to get those profits.
But in a 4-3 ruling, the state Supreme Court on Monday said the Georgia Lottery is shielded from liability by sovereign immunity. The court also said that Kyle and Mankovitch had failed to legally establish trademark rights for their logo.