About this Site:

This site is a resource for those interested in legal and regulatory developments in the application of blockchain technology, provided by Murphy & McGonigle. We regularly work with financial services companies that have a stake in legal and regulatory developments impacting blockchain technology. We created this site to provide periodic updates on important developments in the law surrounding blockchain technology.

  • This article discusses the statement of the SEC's Divsions of Corporation Finance, Investment Managementa and Trading and Markets relating regulatory approaches to digital assets.  We discuss in particular the path to compliance for entities that issued securities in a manner that did not comply with the registration requirements of the federal securities laws.

  • Who’s On the Block
    (11/12/2018)

    Murphy & McGonigle’s leading FinTech & Blockchain Practice is pleased to publish a new edition of “Who’s On the Block,” a roundup of blockchain conferences, trends and upcoming events.

  • Over the past week, regulators in both the United Kingdom and Hong Kong have voiced words of caution regarding varying virtual assets.  Both regulators were concerned in particular about the integrity of the cash markets for virtual assets and products giving retail investors both direct and indirect exposure to virtual assets.

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  • On January 2, 2019, the Texas Department of Banking issued revised guidance on the application of the Texas Money Services Act to virtual currency transactions.  Updating the Department’s 2014 guidance, the revised guidance offers new perspectives on the application of Texas law and regulations to certain stablecoins and Bitcoin ATMs. 

     

     

  • A federal court sitting in New York and applying that state’s long-arm statute lacked personal jurisdiction over a U.S. company not based in New York.  Accordingly, the court dismissed a breach of contract lawsuit brought against the company by an overseas consultant retained to assist with the company’s initial coin offering.  See ICO Servs., Ltd. v. Coinme, Inc., No. 18-cv-4276, 2018 WL 6605854 (S.D.N.Y. Dec. 17, 2018) (Schofield, J.).  The court held that the one-shot consulting agreement was not the type of on-going relationship courts consider in evaluating personal jurisdiction; and the alleged existence of New York-based customers, investors, and business activity had no alleged connection to the underlying dispute.  Coinme illustrates – in the context of an ICO – contract-related activity that will and will not support personal jurisdiction in federal court.

     

  • A purchaser of tokens in an initial coin offering adequately alleged that the tokens are securities, a district court judge has held.  See Solis v. Latium Network, Inc., No. 18-10255 (SDW) (D.N.J. Dec. 10, 2018).  Accordingly, the court denied a motion to dismiss a putative class action alleging that a blockchain-based company and its co-founders violated Sections 12 and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933.  The decision breaks no new ground, but adds to a growing body of district court decisions rejecting, at the pleading stage, the argument that tokens are not “securities” subject to the federal securities laws.  The issue has not been addressed by a federal court of appeals or definitive guidance from U.S. regulators.

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Blockchain Law Center

Blockchain Litigation Database

The Blockchain Litigation Database tracks blockchain and cryptocurrency-related litigation using a data-based, analytical approach to enable subscribers to follow the development of the case law, analyze legal risks, perform due diligence on counterparties, and more.