Questions tagged [legal]

Legal issues relating to the use of Bitcoins or similar crypto-currencies. This includes issues of legal compliance with legal areas such as taxation, money laundering, international currency controls, and so on. Please do not ask for legal advice.

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135 views

How do I monitor and track the legal proceedings of Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht?

I'm interested in tracking the litigation, timing of hearings and other matters relating to the case against Ross Ulbricht. What website, or resource would have up-to-date information of upcoming ...
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4answers
1k views

Is it legal to embed a miner in another open source program for benifit of the programmer?

So say I am writing an open source program, or any program really, and I embed a Bitcoin miner in the code, so that when people run my program, they would be earning Bitcoins for me. Would this be ...
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498 views

Need an explanation as to why the exchange of BTC for USD is legal

Many have asked if the exchange of BTC for USD is legal, and they will cry "legal" and simultaneously cite FinCEN's regulations for a MSB. However, they never explain if an individual trading BTC ...
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What does the US government do with seized coins?

It was reported today that the US government shut down the web site Silk Road, where people bought and sold things (allegedly including illegal drugs) using Bitcoins. The operator was arrested, and ...
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1answer
166 views

What are the (non-escrow) methods people are using to minimise bitcoin transaction fraud?

Direct peer-to-peer bitcoin transactions are irreversible; and relying on a centralised escrow or reputation service for fraud protection is contrary to bitcoin's decentralised philosophy. What other ...
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172 views

Where to find a list of Bitcoin attorneys?

Does anyone know where to find a list of attorneys well-versed in Bitcoin? A standard Google search has yielded decent results, but just wondering if this already exists somewhere. More specifically,...
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1answer
895 views

Is it legal to convert bitcoin to USD?

I've been told by many people that bitcoins are fully legal to use as currency, but not legal to convert to USD and use as US currency. Is this true? If so, what references back this up? If not, what ...
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241 views

Legal question regarding rippling balances between Ripple gateways

Let's say a ripple user were to extend trust to both Bitstamp and Snapswap to owe him 100 USD. He offers to trade USD-Bitstamp-IOU for USD-Snapswap-IOU at an exchange rate of 1:1. Would he have to ...
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215 views

Are Bitcoin in Thailand illegal?

I have read conflicting reports on whether Thailand declared Bitcoin illegal or not. What has happened and how did it affect Bitcoin commerce in Thailand? To what degree are there restrictions? I.e. ...
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779 views

For US Tax purposes, is Bitcoin mining more like property, “work to solve a puzzle” or “winning a lottery”?

From a taxation perspective, I think it's important to clarify if running a Bitcoin mining operation is more like property exchange, labor to solve a puzzle, vs winning a lottery that runs every 10 ...
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129 views

How does the New York subpoena of important people in Bitcoin affect the currency? [closed]

Forbes: Every Important Person In Bitcoin Just Got Subpoenaed By New York's Financial Regulator. Quote: The department is starting out by subpoenaing 22 digital-currency companies and investors to ...
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4k views

Are there any legal implications when using localbitcoins.com?

You can get BitCoins for under 100 bucks via CoinBase and there are people on LocalBitCoins who are advertising offers to buy BitCoin for over 100 bucks. The spread is around $10; so I was ...
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Legal issues / banking issues selling Bitcoins to people OTC?

I'm wondering what the practical / legal limits are on selling Bitcoin as an individual using Craigslist and LocalBitcoins. Will I run into legal issues / frozen bank accounts as I scale this? Right ...
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486 views

Is bitcoin mining a business? [closed]

Just a very quick, and I hope simple question. Is Bitcoin mining classed as running a business? All comments appreciated! Thanks
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1answer
326 views

Are Ripple IOUs e-Money under European law?

It has been confirmed by multiple sources that Bitcoin is not electronic money according to EU Directive 2009/110/EC, mainly because it does not represent "a claim on the issuer" and does not have a "...
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151 views

When thinking about e-currency in a general sense, what features discourage black market usage, but promote anonymity?

I'm interested in e-currency that discourages black market usage (child porn, meth deals, etc) but allows for anonymous operation (donations to charity, buying a pizza, viagra, or other health issues) ...
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2k views

Traditional VC investment vs. bitcoin IPO

There are few Bitcoin "stock exchanges" trading mainly BTC mining company pass-through shares, like https://btct.co/ https://bitfunder.com/ We are planning to get investment for our Bitcoin-...
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565 views

bitcoin knowledgeable attorneys?

I'd like to accept freelance work with bitcoin, probably a large enough amount to consult a lawyer. What kinds of questions would you ask to make sure they're competent? How would you go about ...
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1answer
139 views

MtGox-Api License

I want to use the data of the MtGox-API for my (commercial) website. I want to show their data as an exchange-rate, but, of course, I will link to their site and cite them as source. I couldn't find ...
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1answer
211 views

Do US based exchanges need to file as an MSB with FinCen?

What other legal requirements are there and what are the costs of compliance?
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3answers
3k views

Is it possible to detect mining of bitcoins on an enterprise network?

Is it possible to detect bitcoins mined where it may be against an organization's computer usage policy? E.g., Bitcoins mined secretly on corporate or university computers when the policies of the ...
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3answers
728 views

What happens if the US govt. bans Bitcoin?

They can do that because they are the US govt. What would be the likely consequences of the ban?
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1k views

What prevents Bitcoins for being used to avoid taxation?

Today, states can follow money trails and transaction histories, usually involving checking bank accounts. As as I understand, It's impossible for anyone else to read your Bitcoin transactions and ...
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2answers
331 views

How can I measure the “health” of Bitcoin?

What are the metrics that matter when evaluating the overall "health" of Bitcoin? What are the thresholds? Specifically Economic (e.g. velocity, days destroyed, market volume & beta) Technical ...
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228 views

What aspects of Money Order laws will apply to merchants who use Bitcoin?

There are several money order laws that apply to merchants who accept them. Bitcoin seems to have properties of a money order, but also some aspects of value that are driven by demand. I'm looking ...
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509 views

From a legel perspective, are Bitcoins “created” by a miner or the Bitcoin Protocol?

The recent FinCEN announcement said explicitly that virtual currency isn't a "currency" by the standard sense of the word, and shouldn't be regarded as such. Should Bitcoin ever be considered a "...
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1answer
266 views

Do private people mining or exchanging Bitcoin with Fiat fall under FINCEN's definition of “user”?

Fincen's March 2013 report defines: A user is a person that obtains virtual currency to purchase goods or services. An exchanger is a person engaged as a business in the exchange of virtual currency ...
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Do USA-based miners need to register with FinCEN?

As seen in recent news, FinCEN has issued a statement on its classification of virtual currencies: http://www.fincen.gov/statutes_regs/guidance/html/FIN-2013-G001.html Hypothetically suppose I mine ...
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720 views

When should an individual or business file a SAR with FinCen?

In the United States, both Individuals and Businesses are required to file a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) with FinCen when: Individuals who transport more than $10,000 into or out of the United ...
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1answer
161 views

Is it acceptable / encouraged to ask for ID and keep a photocopy for OTC Bitcoin transactions?

Suppose a business wants to get into the OTC Bitcoin business. It will need to comply with AML laws. It is acceptable / encouraged for such a business to ask for photo ID and keep a photocopy? Does ...
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2answers
2k views

Setting up a coinbase like service in India , need suggestions

I have read and researched extensively on bitcoin, but I haven't found any service like coinbase that allows a user to buy or sell bitcoins online without having a US bank account. So how can one ...
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1answer
134 views

Documenting bitcoin cash buys

I've been trading BTC in the UK via bank transfer for a while now and may begin doing cash purchases soon. I've realised that it is critical I document the cash withdrawal as an expense so that I get ...
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1answer
96 views

Might AML regulations have to be applied to unofficial currencies sites in EU?

Is there any AML regulation in EU countries which might have to be applied to unofficial currencies, such as Bitcoins? I guess usually they only apply to state-backed currencies, but since Bitcoins ...
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2answers
327 views

Should earnings in Bitcoin converter to a traditional currency be treated as trading-income or non-trading income for tax purposes?

Should earnings in Bitcoin converter to a traditional currency be treated as trading income or non-trading income for tax purposes (for example, in Ireland)? Reason for them being considered trading ...
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5answers
953 views

What money transmission licences are relevant to Bitcoin?

Tradehill was shutdown for various regulation issues, including not having the required money transmission licenses. What were the money transmission licenses that were required? What other ...
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1answer
680 views

Is it legal to use bitcoin in a domain name?

Is it legal to use bitcoin in a domain name? Not a sub domain, but in the main domain name.
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1answer
343 views

Bitcoin charity fraud - is it illegal?

So we're all aware of services like CoinAd, but what if someone took advantage of that? Imagine if someone had a video game on facebook or something and had people fill out a CAPTCHA before they could ...
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3answers
472 views

Easiest way to set up non computer-literate person with Bitcoin

What would be the easiest/quickest way to get somebody who isn't computer-literate set up to have the ability to transfer money to me via Bitcoin? Also, Bitcoin touts that it is anonymous. Is it any ...
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2answers
311 views

Are there any countries which currently block or plan to block Bitcoin?

Are there any countries which currently block or plan to block Bitcoin? If anyone has enough reputation to edit this, maybe add "censorship" or maybe "freedom" as a tag because i can't.
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521 views

How does one document Bitcoin investments for tax and other legal issues?

If Bitcoins are used as a store of value or investment vehicle, what legal documents should the investor require/keep? To date, no jurisdiction has special laws concerning cryptocurrencies, but ...
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0answers
227 views

Zero Percent Interest Nonresident Free (Online?) Euro Checking Account with Good Service for Cashing out Bitcoins?

You can cash out bitcoins the cheapest way in Euros, right? I'm from the EU but my country is not in the eurozone, so that's why I need a convenient nonresident euro account. I'm looking for the ...
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2answers
790 views

Anonymity through paying by bitcoin

I am considering the VPN service Privateinternetaccess. One of it's payment methods is bitcoins. As described on this page paying with bitcoins strengthens anonymity. In contradiction, this page ...
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2answers
687 views

Are there mixing services or online wallets that are explicitly compliant with anti-laundering laws?

I'm interested in mixing services (0% taint) that are compliant with the most conservative anti-money laundering laws. My goal is to have anonymity between peers in a transaction, but to remain ...
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1answer
369 views

Is there a website that tracks Bitcoin taxes paid to local government?

One thing that would further legitimize Bitcoin with government oversight is the payment of relevant taxes to Federal and State government (in local equivalent currency) for e-commerce and mining ...
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0answers
165 views

What additional actions should an ethical Bitcoin-related business take with each transaction?

I'm considering starting an ethical business for users that accepts Bitcoin as a payment. My intent is to abide by all laws and interpret them in an appropriate manner. My intent is to abide by ...
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2answers
287 views

If miners pay income tax, could a change in tax laws affect network security?

Assuming that more than half of the Bitcoin miners pay taxes on revenue gained, could a increase in income tax laws (or similar) cause those ethical miners to go out of business? ... and the Bitcoin ...
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1answer
261 views

What Bitcoin profitability calculators account for taxation on miner income?

If I were to run a miner, I want to be ethical and pay all relevant income tax and gain all required licensing, etc for my country. My miner income is probably taxed at a 1099 income rate or lower, ...
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302 views

Accountability with Bitcoin transactions

In one of the comments to this question Highly Irregular pointed out an interesting legal issue that might arise with Bitcoin. Mainly, if some organisations use Bitcoin (say, Wikileaks) and are deemed ...
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282 views

What are the consequences of donating bitcoins to WikiLeaks?

The WikiLeaks website provides a bitcoin donation address 1HB5XMLmzFVj8ALj6mfBsbifRoD4miY36v According to this article from the Sydney Morning Herald, Julian Assange of WikiLeaks has been declared an ...
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666 views

Does the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission govern Bitcoin?

Do SEC regulations apply to: Exchange of Bitcoin for US dollars Investing in companies with Bitcoin An exchange that sells shares of company stock for Bitcoin Bitcoin futures contracts