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  • Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 121: Guidance for Entities Safeguarding Crypto-Assets Issued

    On March 31, 2022, the Division of Corporation Finance and the Office of the Chief Accountant (staff) of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 121 (SAB 121), which “adds interpretive guidance for entities to consider when they have obligations to safeguard crypto-assets held for their platform users.”

  • CFTC Writes the Book on Enforcement

    Wednesday, May 8, 2019 was an important day for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC or “Commission”). First, the CFTC’s Division of Enforcement (DOE) published an Enforcement Manual, providing market participants for the first time ever with one-stop-shop guidance on the Commission’s enforcement procedures. Second, CFTC Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo testified before the Senate Committee on Appropriations about the Commission’s 2020 budget request. Both events confirm what many have come to suspect over the last year: as part of its efforts to ensure that the U.S. derivatives market remains “the world’s best regulated,” enforcement will continue as one of the Commission’s top priorities going forward.

  • South Carolina Begins Licensing Money Transmission

    In 2016, South Carolina enacted the South Carolina Anti-Money Laundering Act (the “Act”). The Act was to become effective upon the later of June 9, 2017, or the adoption of final implementing regulations. Those regulations were adopted, and they will become effective when published on May 25, 2018. Consequently, the Act will finally become effective on May 25, 2018.

  • Real Property Transfers Ripe for Blockchain Disruption: Laws in the U.S. Must Follow the Technology

    When we consider the core goal of the real property recordation system in the United States—assuring owners that they are gaining clear title to a particular parcel of real property—the benefits of a blockchain-based system are so glaring that movement in this direction seems inevitable.

  • Blockchain Variations: Sidechains, Slidechains and the Potential of the Fork

    As an ever-increasing numbers of blockchain-based patent applications seek issuance, savvy inventors and practitioners continue probing for patent-eligible space. Performance-related refinements to blockchain technology may provide that safe harbor.

  • Blockchain and the Legal Landscape

    In this video, Pillsbury partner Mercedes Tunstall discusses some of the important legal issues to consider when exploring a blockchain solution.

  • Gibraltar’s Financial Services Regulator Adopts First-Ever Purpose-Built Blockchain Regulations

    Firms in Gibraltar which use distributed ledger technology to store or transmit value belonging to others must now be appropriately licensed. What other countries might follow suit?

  • Are Smart Contracts Smart Enough for the Insurance Industry?

    Third-party intervention may now prove unnecessary when interpreting and enforcing contract provisions—at least this is what proponents of smart contracts believe. The overall goal, they argue, is to provide security unattainable through traditional contract law, and to reduce additional transaction costs that come with the traditional process. Will insurance policies become the laboratory to test their thesis?

  • Blockchains, Smart Contracts and Real Estate

    The real estate industry is frequently identified as one of the most likely early adopters of blockchain technology and smart contracts. However, industry participants remain skeptical as to the timing and magnitude of the expected changes. That is understandable given the close association of blockchain technology with bitcoin controversies, other virtual currencies and some questionable crowdfunding ventures.

  • Recognition of Smart Contracts

    New laws and other legal developments are clearing the way for the use of smart contracts in the United States.