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#Cryptocurrency

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As noted in our prior post featuring an article published in Bloomberg Tax authored by David Zaslowsky and Christopher Murrer, the Digital Asset provisions of the U.S. Infrastructure Bill were subject to harsh criticism by many in the cryptocurrency industry and certain U.S. Congresspersons. Nonetheless, these provisions remained unchanged when the U.S. Infrastructure Bill was signed into law by President Biden on November 15. The cryptocurrency industry continues efforts to convince Congress that changes or…

The Law Commission has published its advice to the UK Government on smart legal contracts and concluded that “the current legal framework in England and Wales is clearly able to facilitate and support the use of smart legal contracts, without the need for statutory law reform”.The advice forms part of an on-going project initially commissioned by the Lord Chancellor in 2019 into the ways in which smart contracts are being used, and the extent to…

Crypto advocates have worried for months about U.S. President Biden’s USD 1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, which includes tax and reporting requirements for transactions involving “digital assets” like cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). The U.S. Congress passed the infrastructure package on November 5,2021. Baker McKenzie Switzerland’s Chris Murrer along with other prominent crypto lawyers and professors address the digital asset provisions such as the criminal components and questions about the constitutionality of the new requirements. Find…

On October 28, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) released a final version of the updates to its 2019 Guidance for a Risk-Based Approach for Virtual Assets and Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs), which bear on anti-money laundering (AML), information gathering, reporting and other obligations. See our earlier post here. These updates, originally scheduled for release in June 2021, were postponed to allow additional time to consider and incorporate feedback from the virtual asset industry…

On October 18, the New York Attorney General announced that cease-and-desist letters were issued to two “[v]irtual or ‘crypto’ currency lending platforms”, directing the lending platforms to “immediately cease their unregistered and unlawful activities in New York.” The announcement states also that three other platforms were directed to immediately provide information about their activities and products. The announcement emphasizes that these actions by the New York Office of Attorney General (OAG) are intended to protect…

On September 24, 2021, the People’s Bank of China’s (PBOC) published a Q&A on its website stating, according to English translations of the original text, that all digital currency services for trading, order matching, token issuance and derivatives of virtual currencies are strictly prohibited. The Q&A stated further that overseas virtual currency exchanges that use the internet to offer services to domestic residents are also considered illegal financial activity, and employees working in China for…