The lawsuit alleges trademark infringement and unfair competition. It claims Toys ‘R’ Us is misusing Ty’s Beanie trademark, in advertising and on shelves, to sell and promote products not made by Ty.
Ty claims in the lawsuit that the misuse of Beanies has been “willful and deliberate” and will do “irreparable harm” unless a judge puts an end to the practice.
The company has also recently filed a federal lawsuit against Target in October 2009, claiming the merchandiser used the Beanie term to sell a Hello Kitty plush doll. Ty has requested a settlement and Target is reviewing the request, according to a court document.
Ty’s dispute with Toys R Us goes back to February 1999 when the toy retailer was first asked to stop using the Beanie term in connection with the sale of Teletubby dolls.
Toys R Us accommodated the request, but apparently used the term again in September 2001, March 2006 and then again in October.
Ty wants a federal judge to rule that the retailer has infringed on the Beanies trademark, and the toymaker wants monetary relief including profits made from selling toys with the Beanies term and any additional amount that the judge sees fit.