Report: Virtual Currencies: 18 July 2016

Following the increasing popularity of digital currencies such as Bitcoin, the FMLC was asked by stakeholders to explore legal uncertainties arising from their proliferation.  In response, the FMLC established a “Virtual Currency Scoping Forum” as a space for discussion and initiated an analysis of the legal character of virtual currencies in the context of their development as a medium of exchange.  In this report entitled Issues of legal uncertainty arising in the context of virtual currencies, the Committee examines how established cryptocurrencies, in particular, may fit into the traditional categories of property and personal rights established at Common Law.

The FMLC outlines the difficulties which will be encountered in the course of attempts to shoe-horn modern payment technologies into traditional legal concepts and recognises that, with further analysis and discussion, it may be necessary to adapt traditional legal categories to accommodate digital currencies.

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