Wyoming is now the first U.S. state to classify cryptocurrencies as money. A bill, Senate File 125 was introduced by Sen. Tara Nethercott and passed by the Wyoming Senate 28-1 on January 31. Therefore, this categorization will establish property rights for cryptocurrency owners, reports a media outlet on February 1.
Wyoming Classifies Cryptocurrencies as a Legal Property
Wyoming has passed a bill which categorizes cryptocurrencies as money. Sen. Tara Nethercott introduced Senate File 125 which outlines that virtual currencies should be considered as legal property. Nethercott is reportedly a supporter of cryptocurrencies.
The consequence of the bill is that the rules that apply to money will now be the same for virtual currencies. According to Nethercott,
It adds value and legitimacy to the currency by giving financial institutions and businesses the ability to use it more flexibly in ways they are already familiar with.
Bill Establishes Property Rights for Owners of Cryptocurrencies
In the same vein, Senate File 125 establishes property rights for those who own cryptocurrencies. Banks can also now offer custodial services to clients where cryptocurrencies are held in trust funds even though the asset itself will not be deposited with them. Moreover, companies in the crypto industry such as Fidelity, and Bakkt will be able to operate without incurring legal costs.
Unlike other states in the U.S. which are yet to define money as legal property, Wyoming has already introduced eight bills to cater for the Blockchain and crypto industry. Caitlin Long, Wyoming Blockchain Coalition co-chairwoman also pointed out that these bills could help to bring in new companies to the state and even generate revenue. Thus, it can be expected that this will set the pace for other states in the region to follow.
Wyoming Introduces Bill to Allow Banks Offer Custodial Services
BTCNN on January 19 revealed that Wyoming had also introduced a bill, Digital assets-existing law that will allow banks to offer custodial services to clients. These approved financial institutions can serve as an investment adviser, broker-dealer, or investment company to their customers. However, they are expected to comply with requirements such as anti‑money laundering, and customer identification.
On January 14, BTCNN also reported of Caitlin Long’s tweets which publicized that the western U.S. State has proposed two new bills targeting Blockchain and cryptocurrency. House Bill 62 which is called Financial technology sandbox classifies tokens as intangible property. Alternatively, House Bill 57 aims to create a friendly environment for Fintech companies to launch their products.