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  • K Kim and M Bacina

Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act (re)introduced

Updated: Jul 12, 2023

On March 23, Tom Emmer, the co-Chair of the Congressional Blockchain Caucus and majority whip of the US House of Representatives, introduced the Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act (BRCA), saying:

Crypto and blockchain technology, by nature, does not easily fit into the frameworks policymakers have considered when crafting regulations in the past.

And further emphasized the importance of the proposed bill:

The longer we delay… the greater risk that this transformative technology is driven overseas, depriving domestic users and investors. This bill will help America remain a technological leader in the crypto space.

The bipartisan bill is co-led by Darren Soto, also the co-Chair of the Congressional Blockchain Caucus, and affirms that the blockchain developers and businesses that do not provide custody services to customers are not classified as money transmitters under US law. In trying to provide regulatory certainty, the bill aims to prevent blockchain developers or businesses, including individual service providers, from relocating to other jurisdictions which provide clearer regulatory guidance. This marks the fourth successive Emmer-led introduction of the BRCA bill since 2018. On all prior occasions the bill has failed.

The 2023 BRCA has already attracted positive feedback and support from many established industry members, including CEOs of the Blockchain Association, Chamber of Digital Commerce, Crypto Council and Coin Center who said:

The Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act would reinforce in law the established understanding that non-custodial services…should not be regulated in the same way as…a custodial cryptocurrency exchange.

It remains to be seen whether 'fourth time is the charm' for a Bill which would bring at least one small part of needed regulatory certainty for the US, amid increasingly hostile views towards crypto asset service providers by the Biden administration.


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