InComm Inc., an Atlanta prepaid card marketer, has sued Blackhawk Network in federal court, charging Blackhawk with patent infringement.

InComm accused Blackhawk, a Pleasanton, Calif., prepaid card and payments company, of infringing on an InComm patent on a computer-implemented method for processing stored-value card transaction requests, according to the lawsuit, which InComm filed last week in Madison, Wis.

The lawsuit says the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office legally issued the patent to e2Interactive Inc. of Atlanta, InComm's parent company, Aug. 25.

In the lawsuit, InComm accuses Blackhawk of infringing on its patent through the operation of Blackhawk's Gift Card Mall. The malls, which are placed near cash registers, are found in supermarkets operated by Safeway Inc., Blackhawk's parent.