After the Tennessee Education Lottery suspended temporarily Action 24/7’s license, the operator protested the measure by filing a lawsuit. Consequently, Davidson County Chancery Court ruled to reinstate temporarily the operator’s license.
Action 24/7 Reinstates Its License
In light of an ongoing investigation over suspicions for money laundering and credit card fraud, the Tennessee gambling regulator temporarily suspended Action 24/7’s license. The initial decision was taken on March 18 by Tennessee Education Lottery (TEL) chair Susan Lanigan.
On the next day, the TEL convened for a board meeting and upheld the decision to suspend the operator’s license temporarily. However, the operator disagreed with the suspension and challenged the decision by filing a lawsuit against the TEL on Monday last week at the Davidson County Chancery Court in Nashville. Consequently, last week Friday, the court ruled in favor of the operator. As a result, it allowed Action 24/7 to reinstate its license temporarily, while TEL’s investigation is still ongoing.
In a statement, Tina Hodges, president of Action 24/7 said that the company applauds the court’s decision. Furthermore, she stressed that Action is looking forward to “working with state officials to ensure public safety and trust” in the regulatory system, while at the same time maintaining a healthy environment for the businesses in Tennessee.
The Operator Was Not Given an Opportunity to Be Heard
The Davison County Chancery Court acknowledged that the operator may suffer significant harm due to the temporary suspension of its license. In its ruling, the Court also considered that the temporary stopping of operations may negatively impact the “customers, goodwill, and reputation” of the operator.
“The loss of business, customers, goodwill, and reputational damage can constitute irreparable harm that cannot adequately be compensated with money damages,”reads the Davison County Chancery Court’s ruling
Another point that the Court raised in its decision was that the TEL did not follow its procedures. Although the regulator convened at an emergency meeting to ratify its decision, it also had to conduct a hearing, or “at a minimum” allow the licensee to discuss the issue with the TEL Board. Consequently, the Court said, that the temporary suspension was ratified by the TEL Board “without providing Action 24/7 an opportunity to be heard”.