Legal Research

Our own legal research reports:

When are tokens securities in the EU and US?

This article presents a comparative analysis of the application of US and EU securities laws to initial coin offerings (ICOs), or token sales. For the US, a full analysis of the application of the Howey test to different types of tokens gives insight into classification of tokens as a security (“investment contract”) under the US Securities Act and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. For EU financial law, the analysis in this paper focuses on the classification of tokens as ‘transferable securities’ under Art. 4(1)(44) of MIFiD II.

Digital Assets in the EU

The report gives an in-depth overview of EU law covering digital currencies and initial coin offerings. While there is a degree of harmonization across European Member States, there are still substantial differences between Member State regulations, especially with regards to the regulation of crypto-assets under securities laws. The report shows these differences by providing a comparative overview of the legal classifications of digital currencies and crypto assets across EU Member States. It also covers the most crypto-friendly EU jurisdictions, incl. Malta, Estonia and Switzerland.

Third-Party Research

YearAuthor(s)Title
2019Angela WalchDeconstructing 'Decentralization': Exploring the Core Claim of Crypto Systems
2019Thibault SchrepelCollusion by Blockchain and Smart Contracts
2018Aurelio Gurrea-Martínez, Nydia RemolinaThe Law and Finance of Initial Coin Offerings
2018Stéphane BlemusLaw and Blockchain: A Legal Perspective on Current Regulatory Trends Worldwide
2018Wulf KaalInitial Coin Offerings: The Top 25 Jurisdictions and Their Comparative Regulatory Responses
2018Andrea Leiter, Jake GoldenfeinLegal Engineering on the Blockchain: 'Smart Contracts' as Legal Conduct
2018Angela WalchIn Code(rs) We Trust: Software Developers as Fiduciaries in Public Blockchains
2018Wulf A. KaalInitial Coin Offerings: The Top 25 Jurisdictions and Their Comparative Regulatory Responses
2018Stéphane BlemusLaw and Blockchain: A Legal Perspective on Current Regulatory Trends Worldwide
2018Berardino Palazzo, Daniel Rabetti, Evgeny LyandresAre Tokens Securities? An Anatomy of Initial Coin Offerings
2018Thibault SchrepelIs Blockchain the Death of Antitrust Law? The Blockchain Antitrust Paradox
2017Richard Thompson Ainsworth, Musaad AlwohaibiThe First Real-Time Blockchain VAT - GCC Solves MTIC Fraud
2017Karen EC LevyBook-Smart, Not Street-Smart: Blockchain-Based Smart Contracts And The Social Workings Of Law
2017Michèle FinckBlockchain Regulation
2017Carla L. ReyesConceptualizing Cryptolaw
2017Angela WalchThe Path Of The Blockchain Lexicon (And The Law)
2017Aneta VondráčkováRegulation of Virtual Currency in the European Union
2017Julie A. MaupinMapping the Global Legal Landscape of Blockchain and Other Distributed Ledger Technologies
2017Paul OudinDecoding Blockchain Legal Issues — A Financial Law Perspective
2017Stefan Grundmann, Philipp HackerDigital Technology as a Challenge to European Contract Law – From the Existing to the Future Architecture
2017Iris M. BarsanLegal Challenges of Initial Coin Offerings (ICO)
2017Ajinkya Mahesh TulpuleEnforcement and Compliance in a Blockchain(ed) World
2017Usman ChohanInitial Coin Offerings (ICOs): Risks, Regulation, and Accountability
2017Philipp Hacker, Chris ThomaleCrypto-Securities Regulation: ICOs, Token Sales and Cryptocurrencies under EU Financial Law
2017Kevin D. Werbach, Nicolas CornellContracts Ex Machina
2017Dirk A. Zetzsche, Ross P. Buckley, Douglas W. ArnerThe Distributed Liability of Distributed Ledgers: Legal Risks of Blockchain
2017Jonathan Rohr, Aaron WrightVBlockchain-Based Token Sales, Initial Coin Offerings, and the Democratization of Public Capital Markets
2017Kevin WerbachTrust, But Verify: Why the Blockchain Needs the Law
2016Kevin D. WerbachTrustless Trust
2016Tom W. BellCopyrights, Privacy, and the Blockchain
2016Maria Letizia Perugini, Paolo Dal CheccoSmart Contracts: A Preliminary Evaluation
2016Lauren Henry ScholzAlgorithmic Contracts
2016David RountreeTechnology and contracts: Navigating the blockchain and the law.
2016Stephen M. McJohn, Ian McJohnThe Commercial Law of Bitcoin and Blockchain Transactions
2016Stephen M. McJohn, Ian McJohnThe Commercial Law of Bitcoin and Blockchain Transactions
2016Philipp PaechSecurities, Intermediation and the Blockchain - An Inevitable Choice between Liquidity and Legal Certainty?
2016Max RaskinThe Law and Legality of Smart Contracts
2016Alexander SavelyevContract Law 2.0: «Smart» Contracts As the Beginning of the End of Classic Contract Law
2016Carla L. ReyesMoving Beyond Bitcoin to an Endogenous Theory of Decentralized Ledger Technology Regulation: An Initial Proposal
2015Dawid De Villiers, Lara-Jade SherBitcoin - a new kind of money : financial law
2015Evan L. Greebel ,Kathleen Moriarty ,Claudia Callaway, Gregory XethalisRecent key Bitcoin and virtual currency regulatory and law enforcement developments
2015Quinn DuPont, Bill MaurerLedgers and Law in the Blockchain
2015Aaron Wright, Primavera De FilippiDecentralized Blockchain Technology and the Rise of Lex Cryptographia
2015Michael AbramowiczCryptocurrency-Based Law
2015Matthew P. PonsfordA Comparative Analysis of Bitcoin and Other Decentralised Virtual Currencies: Legal Regulation in the People's Republic of China, Canada, and the United States
2015Andrés Guadamuz, Christopher MarsdenBlockchains and Bitcoin: Regulatory Responses to Cryptocurrencies
2015Angela WalchThe Bitcoin Blockchain as Financial Market Infrastructure: A Consideration of Operational Risk
2014Julie Andersen HillVirtual Currencies & Federal Law

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