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Is Bitcoin Legal In Texas

Direct Bitcoin Trading Is Not Money Transmission In Texas And Illinois

Direct Bitcoin Trading Is Not Money Transmission In Texas And Illinois

Marco Santori (@msantoriESQ) November 30, 2016 Since money transmission regulations are only applicable to organizations that hold custody of user funds, bitcoin or fiat, decentralized exchanges like Bitsquare will not be considered for KYC policies nor money transmission. Earlier this year, peer to peer exchange Bitsquare introduced bitcoin-to-fiat trading , which can be used as an alternative to conventional bitcoin exchanges for users that are hesitant towards KYC policies and strict regulations. Under the regulations of Illinois and Texas, the widely-used Local Bitcoins, a peer to peer bitcoin exchange platform, will not be regulated under money transmission regulations as well, allowing users to trade bitcoin to fiat freely without being overseen by the authorities. However, Santori noted that buying and selling of bitcoin via bitcoin kiosks or BTMs is still regulated as they connect to an exchange on the backend. Also, because kiosks and BTMs hold custody of fiat money that is provided to the sellers, they still fall under money transmission regulations. 2 According to the proposed guidance, matching engine exchanges are money transmitters if they custody fiat and pass it along to the seller Marco Santori (@msantoriESQ) November 30, 2016 At the moment, bitcoin and cryptocurrency trading is still considered by Washington as money transmission in the Uniform Money Services Act (UMSA), regardless if a mediator or a third party transmitter exists or not. Thus, following the basic regulatory frameworks established by the State of Washington, the majority of states in the US still consider direct trading of bitcoin to fiat a money transmission act. As bitcoin continues to grow in market capitalization, develops an international user base, establishes itself as a global Continue reading >>

Texas Bans Alleged Bitcoin Fraudster, Revealing Risks

Texas Bans Alleged Bitcoin Fraudster, Revealing Risks

Texas bans alleged bitcoin fraudster, revealing risks January 9, 2018 Updated: January 9, 2018 9:50am An employee checks power supply units and cooling fans used in cryptocurrency mining systems in Moscow. An employee checks power supply units and cooling fans used in cryptocurrency mining systems in Moscow. A trader wears a bitcoin shirt while working in the S&P 500 options pit last week at Cboe Global Markets in Chicago. Bitcoin's underlying technology can work against its use by criminals. A trader wears a bitcoin shirt while working in the S&P 500 options pit last week at Cboe Global Markets in Chicago. Bitcoin's underlying technology can work against its use by criminals. Bitcoin logos are displayed at a trade show in New York. Bitcoin slumped 9.5 percent to $14,042 Friday. Bitcoin logos are displayed at a trade show in New York. Bitcoin slumped 9.5 percent to $14,042 Friday. "Bitcoin is just the latest in a history of speculative bubbles that most often burst," a Massachusetts regulator says. "Bitcoin is just the latest in a history of speculative bubbles that most often burst," a Massachusetts regulator says. Sheldon Weisfeld purchases $20 worth of Bitcoin from one of the CoinVault ATM machines he operates in the Houston area, this one at Smartphone Repair on Harwin Drive, Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017, in Houston. Weisfeld operates three ATMs in the area that allow users to buy and sell Bitcoin. ( Mark Mulligan / Houston Chronicle ) less Sheldon Weisfeld purchases $20 worth of Bitcoin from one of the CoinVault ATM machines he operates in the Houston area, this one at Smartphone Repair on Harwin Drive, Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017, in Houston. ... more Sheldon Weisfeld purchases $20 worth of Bitcoin from one of the CoinVault ATM machines he operates in the Houston area, Continue reading >>

State Law & Regulations For Bitcoin Atm Operators: Blockchain And Financial Services Blog | Frost Brown Todd

State Law & Regulations For Bitcoin Atm Operators: Blockchain And Financial Services Blog | Frost Brown Todd

Authored by: William T. Repasky , Jeffery T. Gorham Depending on the state where the Bitcoin ATM operator sets up the business, the operator may or may not need to comply with that states laws, regulations and/or licensing. For operators, the primary state-level matters of concern are typically its state or states of operations money transmitter laws. At the federal law level, Money Services Businesses (MSB) as defined by the Bank Secrecy Act, must register with FinCEN and thereafter comply with the BSAs mandates. For a discussion of the federal law issues, see Federal Law & Regulations for Bitcoin ATM Operators. In addition, nearly all the states have promulgated their own laws and regulations, which will be an additional layer of compliance to be navigated by the Bitcoin ATMs operators. Therefore, Bitcoin ATM operators need to consider both state and federal regulatory requirements. Nearly every state has enacted a licensing scheme governing money transmitters or money services business operating within their borders. In fact, only Montana and South Carolina have opted to not affirmatively adopt such a scheme. Of the other states, 13 states have enacted or proposed laws regarding virtual or digital currency (VC) and its associated MSBs. However, the other states which have not explicitly included VC in its laws will still take the position that MSB activity, regardless of whether it is VC-based, will require licensure and oversight. The following is a discussion of a few states which have affirmatively chosen to require Money Transmitter Licenses (MTLs) for VC MSBs, and other state requirements which may touch and concern Bitcoin ATM operators, with much of these requirements being implemented or proposed in 2017 . Some States May Not Require Registration Some states Continue reading >>

Landmark Bitcoin-only Real Estate Deal Closes In Texas

Landmark Bitcoin-only Real Estate Deal Closes In Texas

Landmark Bitcoin-Only Real Estate Deal Closes In Texas By Nathan Reiff | Updated September 19, 2017 4:08 PM EDT As bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have swept up new investors and grown their customer bases over the past months, more businesses see the change as an opportunity to capitalize on the new trend. Retail stores around the world are now accepting payments via bitcoin. The growing usage of the currency will inspire increases in the adoption and price cycle, which is often referred to as a Satoshi cycle, in deference to the pseudonymous inventor of the digital currency. Now, in an important landmark event, a real estate transaction in Texas was completed entirely with the use of bitcoin. The first-ever bitcoin-only real estate transaction was confirmed in the state of Texas, according to Coin Telegraph . The purchase was for a newly-built custom-made home, and the full purchase price was transferred to the seller via bitcoin exchange. The seller then converted the bitcoin payment into U.S. dollars. "In all of my 33 years of closing transactions, I honestly couldn't have expected something so unique to go so smoothly," said the real estate broker. "In a matter of 10 minutes, the bitcoin was changed to U.S. dollars and the deal was done!" The purchase stemmed from an agreement between the seller and the buyer. (See more: How Blockchain Technology is Changing Real Estate .) For an endeavor that was done entirely "offline," the fact that bitcoin was successfully used and the process was completed as quickly and efficiently as it was bodes well for the future success of the currency for these types of transactions. Does this historic bitcoin real estate purchase mean individuals will now start buying homes exclusively in digital currency? While it's difficult to s Continue reading >>

State Of Texas Planning To Allow Bitcoins As Legal Tender Along With Preciousmetals

State Of Texas Planning To Allow Bitcoins As Legal Tender Along With Preciousmetals

Christian missions heterogeneous effects on development in sub-SaharanAfrica State of Texas planning to allow bitcoins as legal tender along with preciousmetals I just blogged about State of Idaho and Arizona are planning to allow precious metals like gold and silver to become legal tender. State of Texas (which has the veto to move out of US) is going further by even proposing to allow digital currencies like bitcoin to become legal tender: A joint resolution introduced in the Texas House proposes a state constitutional amendment to guarantee the right to own, hold and use any mutually agreed upon medium of exchange. Passage of the bill would take another step toward undermining the Federal Reserves monopoly on money. Rep. Matt Schaefer (R-Tyler) introduced House Join Resolution 89 ( HJR89 ) on March 2. If passed, the resolution would place a constitutional amendment on the ballot recognizing the right of the people to own, hold, and use a mutually agreed upon medium of exchange, including cash, coin, bullion, digital currency, or privately issued scrip. The proposal would add the following language to the Texas state constitution. The right of the people to own, hold, and use a mutually agreed upon medium of exchange, including cash, coin, bullion, digital currency, or scrip, when trading and contracting for goods and services shall not be infringed. No government shall prohibit or encumber the ownership or holding of any form or amount of money or other currency. In effect, passage of the bill would, as Ron Paul has often said, legalize the Constitution by treating gold and silver specie as money. Professor William Greene, an expert on constitutional tender, noted that the proposal would introduce competition with the Federal Reserve. By introducing competition in c Continue reading >>

Everything You Wanted To Know About Bitcoin

Everything You Wanted To Know About Bitcoin

Everything You Wanted to Know About Bitcoin What are Bitcoins and how can you get some? Heres an introductory guide to Bitcoins to help answer these questions and more! It is a form of money that is entirely digital. In other words, if the U.S. has dollars, and Europe has Euros, the internet has Bitcoins. But the fact that Bitcoin is digital isnt the most interesting thing about this type of currency. In fact, economists estimate that 92% of all money is digital, no matter what currency were talking about. Its interesting because its decentralized. No single nation, bank or institution controls Bitcoin. Developer Satoshi Nakamoto invented it, but users administer and propagate the currency. Bitcoin works a lot like a regular currency. You can buy and sell digitally, of course, but you can also use it to make real life purchases if the vendor accepts it. The first such real life purchase using Bitcoin was in 2010, when a man bought two pizzas for a whopping 10,000 BTC (Bitcoins). You can invest with it, exchange your Bitcoins for other forms of currency, transfer it, etc. But people can also create new Bitcoins through a process called mining. This is where Bitcoins decentralized system becomes super interesting. Rather than a large bank or financial institution printing more money, anyone can mine new Bitcoins. Mining involves using computational power to solve complex mathematical problems in order to validate other Bitcoin transactions that have occurred within the network of users. This system of peer validation is the bedrock of the revolutionary blockchain technology that makes Bitcoin so secure and allows for direct peer-to-peer value transferring. It is also the linchpin of the system from the perspective of Bitcoin creation. Miners receive new Bitcoins for ever Continue reading >>

Bitconnect Slapped With Securities Emergency Cease And Desist Order

Bitconnect Slapped With Securities Emergency Cease And Desist Order

Bitconnect Slapped with Securities Emergency Cease and Desist Order On Thursday the Texas Securities Commissioner (TSC) signed an Emergency Cease and Desist Order to stop Bitconnect from operating. The mysterious company is a popular bitcoin lending platform with a 4.1 billion USD market capitalization, and is long accused of being a scam. Also read: African Central Banks Told to Ditch Dollar and Buy Bitcoin Bitconnect Ordered Not to Mess with Texas The Texas Securities Commissioner has entered an Emergency Cease and Desist Order to halt the multiple investment programs operated by Bitconnect, the press release reads, an overseas company that claims a market share of $4.1 billion for its cryptocurrency coins. News.Bitcoin.com profiled growing concern within the ecosystem about Bitconnects doings back in November as well as through an opinion piece. Then, as now it appears officially, the worry was mostly due to promises made by the English company that seemed impossibly Ponzi. Bitconnect is soliciting investors for cryptocurrency-based programs that the company claims will deliver annualized returns of 100% or more, the TSC outlines. After detailing how they issue their own coins (a fact curiously denied by advocates) with a cap of 28 million, the TSC continues , The company requires individuals to use Bitcoin, a more established cryptocurrency, to invest in various Bitconnect programs. In one investment called the Bitconnect Lending Program, investors purchase Bitconnect Coins, which are provided to a Bitconnect Trading Bot to generate returns as high as 40% a month. Prominent ecosystem lights from Andreas Antonopoulos to Erik Voorhees have also made it clear to move away from the scheme. Mr. Antonopoulos was plagued with advertisements on his Youtube channel, and ple Continue reading >>

Angela C. Walch - St. Mary's Law

Angela C. Walch - St. Mary's Law

Walch is an Associate Professor at St. Marys University School of Law. Her research focuses on money and the law, blockchain technologies, governance of emerging technologies and financial stability. She is a Research Fellow of the Centre for Blockchain Technologies of University College London. She has presented her research at Harvard Law School, University College London and with the Modern Money Network at Columbia Law School, among others. Her work on blockchain technologies has appeared in the NYU Journal of Legislation & Public Policy and in American Banker. Walch was nominated for Blockchain Person of the Year for 2016 by Crypto Coins News for her work on the governance of blockchain technologies and her influential article in American Banker arguing that the coders and miners of public blockchains should be treated as fiduciaries. Prior to joining the faculty at St. Marys, Walch practiced corporate law at the firm of Ropes & Gray in Boston, for which her practice included venture capital, life sciences and emerging companies work. After Ropes & Gray, she served as an attorney in the Office of the General Counsel at Harvard University. While at Harvard, she advised on general transactional matters and federal grants for international projects. Walch also practiced transactional law in London, where she worked in-house for Sainsburys (a large British supermarket chain) and served as general counsel for Brand Events, a venture-backed consumer events company that produced premier events (Taste of London, Top Gear Live) around the world. Open Source Operational Risk: Should Public Blockchains Serve as Financial Market Infrastructures? in Handbook of Digital Banking and Internet Finance: Alternative Finance, Financial Inclusion, Impact Investing and Decentralized Co Continue reading >>

Texas Becomes One Of The Most Active Regulators Of Cryptocurrencies | City & Business | Finance | Express.co.uk

Texas Becomes One Of The Most Active Regulators Of Cryptocurrencies | City & Business | Finance | Express.co.uk

Texas become one of the most active regulators in cryptocurrencies The state has issued four emergency cease-and-desist orders on cryptocurrency companies in just over a month. Travis Iles, the securities commissioner who issued the latest order from Texas on Friday, said DavorCoin was violating sections of the Texas Securities Act by offering securities for sale and misleading the public. The state also targeted a Hong Kong-based company selling r2b coin on January 24. The company failed to live upto its promise as it stated the cryptocurrency could promise investors that the digital currency will soon be one of the world's most valuable. JPMorgan Chase head Jamie Dimon is one of Bitcoin's harshest critics Cryptocurrency BitConnect was also issued an order by the state of Texas on January 4 as its creators claimed they could deliver returns of 100 percent or more if people invested. And on December 20, Texas took on USI-Tech limited which is an overseas firm that is promising low-risk, triple-digit returns from investment tied to bitcoin mining. The company behind DavorCoin states it pays interest on customer deposits of its digital coin, which can only be bought using bitcoin. DavorCoin has lost more than 75 percent of its value since Thursday and was trading near $1.60 on Monday. Joseph Rotunda, director of the enforcement division at the Texas State Securities Board explained how these cease-and-desist orders follow a month-long undercover investigation of cryptocurrency investment programs. Mr Rotunda said: "We confirmed our suspicion that they were being marketed toward retirees. They were not disclosing the information that needs to be disclosed to an investor." Other states have taken steps against cryptocurrencies but not to the extent of Texas. Florida, North Continue reading >>

Texas Banking Chief Issues Rules For Bitcoin

Texas Banking Chief Issues Rules For Bitcoin

Texas Banking Chief Issues Rules for Bitcoin A new memo from the Texas Department of Banking says that the state will not treat Bitcoin as money but that some companies dealing in Bitcoin transactions will fall under the state's banking regulations. Find out how you can put this story on your website . Texas will not treat Bitcoin and other virtual currencies as legal money, according to a new memo from the Texas Department of Banking.Yet some companies that deal in Bitcoin transactions could draw state oversight, even if they are based outside of Texas. Texas Banking Commissioner Charles Cooper issued a memo this month outlining the agencys policies involving virtual currencies like Bitcoin. At this point a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin is best viewed like a speculative investment, not as money, Cooper said in a statement. In his memo, Cooper provided reasoningthat echoedthe IRS. Last month, the federal agency announced that, for tax purposes, it would treat Bitcoin as property instead of currency because nogovernment recognizes the virtual currency as legal tender. The Texas Tribune thanks its sponsors. Become one . Because neither centralized virtual currencies nor cryptocurrencies are coin and paper money issued by the government of a country, they cannot be considered currencies under the statute, Coopers memo reads. While Texas does not have a state income tax, the state's Department of Banking does regulate certain financial transactions and license financial institutions.An exchange of Bitcoin for U.S. dollars between two parties would not draw the agency's interest, according to the memo. Butsome third-party Bitcoin exchanges are already drawing state scrutiny because of the way they handle transactions involving U.S. currency and Bitcoin, according toDaniel Woo Continue reading >>

Bitcoin Regulation By State (updated 2017)

Bitcoin Regulation By State (updated 2017)

Bitcoin Regulation by State (Updated 2017) by Frederick Reese 4,632 Investors read this Bitcoin has changed the world. Prior to its invention, wealth was largely dependent on the economic health of a nation or the backing of physical assets. With bitcoin, a wealth can be expressed and transferred digitally. All the same, the United States has struggled with the question of the legality of bitcoin. Politician Ron Paul highlighted the controversy of the government legislating a decentralized currency when he said: I understand the political ramifications of [bitcoin], and I think that government should stay out of them and they should be perfectly legal. Not every legislator agrees with that assessment, however. Investors will do well to understand bitcoin legality and the state of bitcoin regulation in the United States in order to stay in compliance, to prevent forfeiture of their investment, and to avoid costly legal fees and penalties. On a national level, the Federal Reserve and the Internal Revenue Service have taken the following positions: Bitcoin and all altcoins, for that matter are not currency, but a taxable commodity akin to stocks . While individuals and businesses are free to use any private currency they wish to conduct business, bitcoin and altcoins are not recognized as legal tender. Similar to property, bitcoin earned for services rendered are taxed as income. Bitcoin paid for services rendered or to independent contractors must be reported on IRS Form 1099, with self-employment tax possibly being applicable. Finally, capital gain on altcoins is taxable, as gains would be in stocks and bonds. The government has taken a cautious position toward bitcoin money transmitters. Despite court decisions stating that bitcoin can be used as money, the Security an Continue reading >>

Texas Regulator Orders Bitconnect To Cease And Desist Marketing Securities

Texas Regulator Orders Bitconnect To Cease And Desist Marketing Securities

Texas Regulator Orders Bitconnect to Cease and Desist Marketing Securities Texas Securities Commissioner condemns Bitconnect for promoting what it considers unregistered securities, promising outsized returns. The Texas Securities Commissioner issued an Emergency Cease and Desist Order on Jan. 4 against Bitconnect for the selling of unlicensed securities. According to the Texas State Securities Board news release : The Securities Commissioner found that the BitConnect investments are securities, but were not registered as required by the Texas Securities Act and State Securities Board Rules and Regulations. In addition, the company is not registered to sell securities in Texas. Bitconnect markets itself as an open-source crypto community platform that offers multiple ways to invest and transact in its native cryptocurrency, BCC . According to the Order, Bitconnect offers users investments in programs that the company claims will deliver annualized returns of 100% or more. As the release clearly states, Bitconnect is based in England and this order does not affect the company directly. However, the regulator does have the authority to ban Bitconnect from dealing with Texas residents. Of course, it is likely to be quite challenging for the company to separate users of Bitconnect tokens in Texas from those in the rest of the world. While cryptocurrency enthusiasts have been largely focusing on regulation at the national level, Texas ruling shows that sub-national regulators can easily affect the regulatory landscape. This adds an extraordinary level of complexity to regulatory compliance . Cryptocurrency users and businesses may find themselves dealing with countless state and provincial regulators, in addition to national authorities, if other jurisdictions follow Texas Continue reading >>

Texas Lawmaker: No Government Shall Prohibit Bitcoin

Texas Lawmaker: No Government Shall Prohibit Bitcoin

Texas Lawmaker: No Government Shall Prohibit Bitcoin The lone star state of Texas has always been well-known for its stance on constitutional rights. On March 2, State Representative Matt Schaefer submitted a proposal to revise the states constitution to say thatvirtual currencies like bitcoin are mediums of exchange that no government shall prohibit. Texas Lawmaker Says No Government Shall Encumber the Ownership of Bitcoin The Texas lawmaker wants it to be known that the use of digital currencies is a citizens fundamental right. The recently submitted Texas House Joint Resolution 89 proposes to change Article I of the states constitution which says that people have the right to use a variety of mediums of exchange. Just as the state of Texas vehemently opposes government interference with gun rights, the amendment would protect currencies like bitcoin in this fashion. Resolution 89 states: Article I, Texas Constitution, is amended by addingthe right of the people to own, hold, and use a mutually agreed upon medium of exchange, including cash, coin, bullion, digital currency, or scrip when trading and contracting for goods and services shall not be infringed. No government shall prohibit or encumber the ownership or holding of any form or amount of money or other currency. I Dont Recall Asking Permission from Anyone to Use Bitcoin Cryptocurrency use has certainly increased in certain partsof Texas over the years with many proponents and companies basedin the area. For instance, Texas is home to digital currency companies such as Factom, Stash Incorporated, Coinvault, Techendeavors, and the radio broadcast, the Crypto Show. The state of Texas is also home to 48 bitcoin automated tellers andmany meetup groups which take place in Dallas, Austin, and Houston. Furthermore, Continue reading >>

Texas Slaps Bitcoin Investment Firm With Cease-and-desist

Texas Slaps Bitcoin Investment Firm With Cease-and-desist

Texas Slaps Bitcoin Investment Firm With Cease-and-Desist Dec 21, 2017 at 16:20 UTC|UpdatedDec 21, 2017 at 20:18 UTC Regulators in Texas have obtained an emergency cease-and-desist order against a company they say is unlawfully pitching bitcoin mining investment products in the state. In a statement yesterday, the Texas State Securities Board revealed that it had taken action againstUSI-Tech Limited, a firm based in Dubai. The firm has allegedly been trying to sell investment contracts in "dozens of Texas cities" by way of social media videos, dedicated websites, and advertisements on sites like Craigslist. It names two U.S.-based agents, Clifford Thomas of Maryland and Michael Rivera of California. According to a presentation dated April of this year and posted to LinkedIn, USI is centered around the sale of software for bitcoin mining and trading. The presentation includes claimed breakdowns of how much money in commissions would-be participants can make based on the number of referrals they generate. The Securities Board said that the company claimed to offer steady, daily returns - a structure reminiscent of high-yield investment plans that boast steady gains. Further, the solicitations reportedly encourage prospective investors to find others to buy in so that they can make money from "referrals." "The agents' websites claim the mining investment 'derives its value from [USI-Tech's] non-exclusive interest in a series of bitcoin mining contracts.' They promise a daily return of 1%. The USI-Tech website says its bitcoin platform "consistently provides returns of up to 150% per year." The returns do not depend on the value of bitcoin, according to the company." According to the statement, those named in the cease-and-desist order were accused of violating Texas secur Continue reading >>

Is Bitcoin Mining Illegal

Is Bitcoin Mining Illegal

Last updated on August 5th, 2016 at 04:04 pm The short answer: In most cases, bitcoin mining is perfectly legal. In a few countries, however, bitcoin mining, as well as the possession and use of bitcoin is illegal. If you live in North America and most of Western Europe, bitcoin mining, as well as possession, is not only legal, but local regulatory frameworks actually provide certain protections and basic oversight. In many cases, bitcoin is not treated as a currency by governments , but instead as an asset or property. As such, bitcoin is afforded some legal protection, just like any other type of property. In most cases, national governments that have not outlawed bitcoin, have not passed laws regarding bitcoin mining. Globally, with only a few exceptions, bitcoin mining is generally considered to be legal. Before digging into the legal issues, Im going to offer a brief overview of bitcoin mining. If youre already familiar with the mining process, feel free to skip ahead. Bitcoin mining refers to the process of adding transaction records to the public ledger. Basically, every bitcoin transaction ever conducted is recorded in the public ledger, although actual users can remain hidden behind anonymous names. This ledger is called the blockchain, and transactions are organized into blocks. The mining process refers to the creation of new blocks of transactions . Once a new block is created, it is added to the blockchain, AKA public ledger. This block is created through solving algorithms with computer processors. Over time, the algorithms have grown progressively more difficult, meaning more computing power and time is now needed to create a block. Further, approximately every four years, the number of bitcoins rewarded for creating a new block is cut in half. Originall Continue reading >>

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