If you are considering doing business with blockchain technology, it is likely that you will need a lawyer. Since the technology is largely unregulated currently, if you start a new ICO, start an altcoin mutual fund, set up a major mining farm, or set up a new decentralized application, you need to seek out legal advice to avoid complications or costly fines.
For the legal industry, this has caused a bit of a renaissance. Not only are the larger firms working to deploy blockchain technology to simplify processing and storage procedures in their offices, but a number of firms have embraced blockchain law as a specialty. Some of these firms have been instrumental in crafting federal and state regulations, as well as writing some of the essential guides on blockchain policy.
This article looks at five of these blockchain law firms. This article is not meant to be construed as an endorsement, but as an introduction to this new field of legal stewardship.
Covington & Burling LLP: With offices in Beijing, Dubai, London, New York, and Shanghai and with partners that include a former UK prime minister, a former U.S. Attorney, and a former member of the British House of Lords, Covington is uniquely positioned. Claiming wide-ranging expertise in blockchain policy, regulation, enforcement, litigation, taxation, investigations, and transnational affairs, Covington promotes a “customers of all size” attitude to its distributed ledger counsel work. Covington was named US News’ 2016 Financial Services Regulation Law Firm of the Year.
Blockchain Law Group: A multinational law firm with offices in the U.S., Russia, Australia, and the U.A.E., the Blockchain Law Group is a blockchain-dedicated law firm serving the needs of companies with new and existing ICOs. The group provides services in blockchain licensing and legal compliance, issuance of new tokens, escrow services, and legal opinion letter drafting.
Frost Brown Todd LLC: With offices in Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee, Frost Brown Todd is a business law firm that has an involved blockchain practice. Focusing mostly on legal compliance and regulation, the law firm is a member of the Chamber of Digital Commerce Lawyer’s Committee.
Norton Rose Fulbright: With offices throughout the world and more than 4,000 lawyers throughout Africa, the Asia Pacific, Canada, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and the United States, Norton Rose Fulbright has set itself up to be a knowledge expert on blockchain and the decentralized currency economy. The author of a series of legal and regulatory guides, the firm has been recognized as a leader in blockchain law. As the law firm has practices covering most business sectors, Norton Rose Fulbright bears exceptional potential as an ICO resource.
Goodwin Procter LLP: The law firm that represented Coinbase in IRS vs. Coinbase, Goodwin Procter is as big as they come in blockchain law. Having recent experience in ICO development, ICO venture funds, bitcoin ATMs, FinCEN and state registrations, bitcoin forex trading, DOJ settlements, and blockchain development, Goodwin is a go-to source when facing a difficult blockchain legal challenge.
These five law firms are by no means the only firms operating in the blockchain space, but they do serve as a representative sampling of what is happening in the legal world of blockchain technology and New Finance.
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