Lawyers for Blockchain Regulatory Compliance
Experienced Blockchain Regulatory Compliance Team
Do you need comprehensive advice on the regulatory landscape of blockchain technology? Are you a blockchain entity that needs a compliance program? If so, then you need the service of an experienced Blockchain Regulatory Compliance Team.
Transitioning to blockchain-empowered technology or starting a business dependent on blockchain technology can be challenging and presents many hurdles for businesses and executives.
Also, the uncertain regulatory landscape has made it extremely difficult for blockchain entities to fully prosper. Regulatory laws written for traditional companies were not written to apply to companies using blockchain technology, smart contracts, and virtual currencies.
As a result, federal agencies have taken a keen interest on the blockchain and, most impotently, the entities that are relying on blockchain technology. These agencies have even initiated federal investigations into some of these companies.
Do not let this happen to you without first conducting a comprehensive regulatory compliance review.
At Oberheiden, P.C., we have a dedicated team of attorneys and consultants experienced in conducting compliance reviews and advising on the laws applicable and relevant to blockchain-empowered entities.
We can give you the assurance you need to confidently and comfortably continue expanding your business into the future. Let us guide you through this emerging area of technological innovation.
Put Oberheiden, P.C. on your side as soon as possible to help you with your regulatory compliance needs in this novel area.
Blockchain Regulatory Categories
There are many regulatory compliance issues for blockchain companies ranging from jurisdictional issues and governance to IP protection and antitrust regulation. We highlight some of these categories below:
1. Jurisdictional Burdens
As we all know, the blockchain facilitates file sharing, company processes, and various transactions across jurisdictional boundaries. Individuals in different countries who have never met one another before can now participate in the same project.
That said, these jurisdictional issues are complex and present many challenges for the participants involved and their relationships.
Further, if these participants have entered into contracts, the jurisdictional differences between contract formation, interpretation, and the law pertaining to breach and modification can be substantial.
Each country has its own set of local laws. Issues such as technology, risk, taxation, data protection, automation, security, and so on are applied differently in different areas.
A key issue here is whose law applies. Even though the blockchain is technically distributed across computer nodes across the world, courts may still seek to determine which jurisdiction has the greatest connection, or nexus.
Another issue would be when and under what circumstances one country can apply its law extraterritorially into another country or against a foreign national.
As a result, the above issues need to be appropriately and comprehensively documented.
2. Governance and Management
Another issue is the type of governance model and management of the blockchain company. Who enforces the rules of the blockchain company? Who sets up the code? Are the project participants the only ones making decisions for the company?
Is voting power the only way to have a greater say on the business´ operations? These are just a few initial governance issues that blockchain companies face.
3. Smart Contract Applications
Many blockchain companies use smart contracts in their operations. Smart contracts execute conditions based on a pre-defined set of rules agreed to by the parties.
As soon as the triggering event occurs or does not occur, the contract is automatically executed. The main issue here is whether smart contracts are even contracts at all.
Because a key feature of smart contracts is automatic enforcement, many agree that smart contracts should not be treated as traditional contracts. This issue is still being debated and the result varies from case to case.
4. Is It A “Security?”
One of the most debated topics is whether the digital asset sold is an investment contract or a “security” under the Howey Test and, consequently, whether the entity must register the asset (or meet an exemption) and comply with the various reporting and recordkeeping provisions under the federal securities laws.
This test applies to digital assets, ICOs, and any other contractual arrangement or interest in a project. An experienced attorney can help you determine whether the particular asset at issue is a “security.”
5. AML/KYC Requirements
Blockchain companies face significant regulatory burdens regarding antitrust legislation and identity verification.
If the blockchain company deals with cryptocurrency investment or is issuing coins in new offerings, they may be deemed financial institutions. Specifically, when cryptocurrencies are involved, they may be considered financial services or money service businesses and the companies may be subject to additional registration and compliance requirements.
If the blockchain company is very powerful, it has to be mindful that it is not interfering with free and fair competition or that it is not taking all the business at the expense of other competitors.
Lastly, the ability of blockchain companies to do business across borders and engage in a certain degree of anonymity in transactions all make it very difficult for these companies to implement KYC policies.
6. Intellectual Property Issues
A core feature of blockchain technology is that it is shared by a network of users. Therefore, protecting the company´s and the participants´ IP is critical.
The participants will need to consider specific details about the blockchain technology or application they seek to use. A large part of this analysis will focus on the agreements used.
In this respect, IP considerations for blockchain companies is very similar to traditional IP issues. An experienced lawyer can help you with IP compliance as well as issues with IP ownership and licensing.
7. Security and Privacy Matters
Blockchains store all transactions, data, and information on the distributed public blockchain. The information is secure and cannot be altered. Further, it is publicly viewable.
Without saying more, this has clear privacy implications. For instance, how much information is viewable to others? Can personal information be kept more secure and private on blockchains?
Data protection laws in the United States require that the user be in control of their data, have the ability to modify it, and that the entity be responsible for protecting it and making sure that it is kept private and confidential.
Thus, privacy laws raise several critical challenges for companies relying on blockchain technology or using blockchain applications.
Need Advice with Blockchain Regulatory Compliance?
Companies are increasingly willing and eager to implement blockchain technology within their businesses or develop blockchain-related applications.
As a result, they will need comprehensive regulatory compliance advice about how their business operations affect various U.S. federal provisions and whether they may have additional obligations under the law.
Since federal agencies are still understanding the blockchain, they are wary of blockchain companies, their operations, and corporate governance structure.
Do not wait to receive a visit from a federal agency. Make sure everything is properly documented in the first instance.
At Oberheiden, P.C., our team of blockchain attorneys can conduct a comprehensive compliance check and give you the peace of mind that your blockchain business is compliance-ready for the future.
Do not wait to secure the compliance advice you need. Call or contact us today for a free and confidential consultation.