Menu

Blockchain and Digital Currency


Overview

Carlton Fields is at the forefront of identifying the numerous complex legal issues faced by today’s innovators.

Digital currencies, smart contracts, and blockchain/distributed ledger technologies have ushered in a new era of innovation that we believe has the potential to disrupt the way we interact with one another, our governments, and private industry. As innovation continues, the technology’s potential to transform how business is conducted presents new challenges and opportunities across nearly every conceivable industrial sector.

As the law in this area develops, Carlton Fields has taken a forward-looking approach to working with clients on blockchain-related issues, including those arising from the use of cryptocurrencies and smart contracts. The members of our interdisciplinary blockchain practice are committed to embracing and maximizing the transformative potential of this technology.
 

Digital Currency and Blockchain Technology Solutions 

Our attorneys provide counsel for a wide range of industries, including insurance, financial services, health care, digital media, entertainment, interactive gaming, and technology. We handle legal issues related to blockchain technology, including distributed ledger technology, initial coin offerings, smart contracts, and Internet of Things (IoT) and machine-to-machine payment systems.

Statutory and Regulatory Compliance Advice

  • FinCEN compliance and enforcement proceedings 
  • Internal Revenue Service and tax advice/planning 
  • Securities and Exchange Commission compliance and enforcement proceedings 
  • Commodity Futures Trading Commission compliance and enforcement proceedings 
  • State money transmitter licensing and money services business compliance 
  • Anti-money laundering and “know your customer” compliance 
  • Congressional/legislative hearings


General Corporate and Business Transactions Assistance

  • Mergers and acquisitions 
  • Venture capital and private investments 
  • Capital markets and securities 
  • Data privacy and cybersecurity 
  • Intellectual property protection 


Litigation Support

  • Regulatory/enforcement actions 
  • Privacy and cybersecurity 
  • Asset seizure and forfeitures 
  • Smart contract issues

 

Experience

  • Represented cryptocurrency exchange in connection with corporate formation and regulatory advice, including issues relating to SEC and CFTC licensure.
  • Counseled developers and entrepreneurs on the legal issues pertaining to the development and maintenance of permissionless and permissioned blockchain protocols, including regulatory and corporate advice.
  • Represented digital currency exchanges and money transmitters in conducting 50-state analysis of application of state money transmitter rules to cryptocurrency-focused business models.
  • Represented cryptocurrency companies before various state regulators in order to obtain or receive clarity on application of state money transmission license.
  • Advised numerous digital currency payment processors on issues pertaining to capital formation and early stage financing, as well as corporate formation issues such as registration in foreign jurisdictions including Gibraltar, Malta, Singapore, Mexico, Bermuda, Puerto Rico, and Cayman Islands.
  • Advised high-frequency/algorithmic trading funds dealing in various digital currencies on issues related to fund formation and regulatory compliance.
  • Counsel to several digital currency payment processors on anti-money laundering and "know your customer" compliance.
  • Counseled numerous companies in conducting technical analysis, building “minimum viable ecosystems” and token design.
  • Pre-litigation and settlement counseling regarding liability associated with attempts to hard fork the Bitcoin blockchain.
  • Analysis of securities and other regulatory issues related to token sales, including analysis of regulatory implications of security token offerings, initial coin offerings, token curated registries, air drops, and applications utilizing the Lightning Network.
  • Provided numerous instances of litigation and regulatory mitigation strategies for completed token sales.
  • Provided analysis and privacy counseling regarding application of the GDPR and other privacy regulations to data stored on decentralized networks.

All Insights

State Regulations on Virtual Currency and Blockchain Technologies (Updated July 2020)

State Regulations on Virtual Currency and Blockchain Technologies (Updated July 2020)

July 14, 2020

State-by-state guide to case law and regulations impacting businesses dealing in blockchain and cryptocurrencies, updated in July 2020.

State Regulations on Virtual Currency and Blockchain Technologies

State Regulations on Virtual Currency and Blockchain Technologies

August 29, 2019

State-by-state guide to case law and regulations impacting businesses dealing in blockchain and cryptocurrencies.

2019 State Blockchain, Crypto, and Virtual Currency Legislation Tracker

2019 State Blockchain, Crypto, and Virtual Currency Legislation Tracker

July 24, 2019

A comprehensive list of newly proposed state legislation relating to cryptocurrencies and blockchains.

What to Do If the SEC Comes Knocking on Your Door

What to Do If the SEC Comes Knocking on Your Door

July 3, 2019

Justin and Michael discuss what may happen when you are served with a subpoena from the SEC, or get approached by the Department of Justice, and what steps you should take in response. In the second half of the discussion, Justin and Michael focus on some issues in the crypto space.

SEC: Ether and Bitcoin Are Not Securities

SEC: Ether and Bitcoin Are Not Securities

October 1, 2018

Cryptocurrency investors were concerned following the SEC’s July 2017 investigative report on digital token sales by a virtual organization known as “The DAO.”

Is Cryptocurrency Money? Depends on Your State

Is Cryptocurrency Money? Depends on Your State

August 29, 2018

Is cryptocurrency money? In America, the question is largely decided by the regulators charged with overseeing their state's money transmitter rules.

2019 State Blockchain, Crypto and Virtual Currency Legislation

Click here to open this table in a new tab/window.

News

Featured Insights

Disclaimer

The information on this website is presented as a service for our clients and Internet users and is not intended to be legal advice, nor should you consider it as such. Although we welcome your inquiries, please keep in mind that merely contacting us will not establish an attorney-client relationship between us. Consequently, you should not convey any confidential information to us until a formal attorney-client relationship has been established. Please remember that electronic correspondence on the internet is not secure and that you should not include sensitive or confidential information in messages. With that in mind, we look forward to hearing from you.