In the wake of the industry’s recent significant bankruptcy filings, crypto watchers are focusing for the first time on which crypto-entities are eligible for chapter 11 relief[1] under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code (the “Bankruptcy Code”)[2] and, if so, whether and under what circumstances,  crypto-assets held by the debtor may become property of the debtor’s “estate.”[3]  As previously posted, if a…

On September 28, 2022, several industry groups representing banks and other entities subject to regulation by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, including the United States Chamber of Commerce, filed suit against the CFPB over the agency’s controversial updates last spring to its supervision manual.  Those updates indicated the CFPB’s intent to examine financial institutions for potential discrimination under its authority…

The Federal Reserve Board (“FRB”) has approved final guidelines (“Final Guidelines”) for Federal Reserve Banks (“Reserve Banks”) to use in evaluating requests for master accounts and access to Reserve Bank financial services (“Fed Accounts and Services”).[1]  The Final Guidelines reflect the comments to and development of two prior proposed guidelines: (i) the initial proposed guidelines, issued on May 11, 2021;…

On June 7, 2022, Wyoming Senator Cynthia Lummis and New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand introduced the Lummis-Gillibrand Responsible Financial Innovation Act, the first comprehensive bill introduced to govern digital assets (see our post summarizing the key provisions in the bill here). In the Debevoise Fintech Blog’s first official webcast, our banking and fintech experts, Alison Hashmall and Gary Murphy, discuss…

On July 21, 2022, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC” or the “Commission”) announced parallel actions against a former Coinbase product manager, his brother, and his friend for orchestrating a year-long insider trading scheme.[1]  According to the agencies’ respective charging documents, Defendant Ishan Wahi used inside information gleaned from his employment at Coinbase to tip…

In light of recent volatility in crypto markets and news of several crypto entities filing for bankruptcy,[1] market participants are increasingly scrutinizing the credit of crypto intermediaries and considering whether there will be an influx of additional filings.  In thinking through credit risk, one critical preliminary set of questions that market participants should ask is which bankruptcy regime is likely…

Originally Published: July 13, 2022 Updated: July 14, 2022 One of the key unresolved questions surrounding crypto-custodian bankruptcy proceedings under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code is whether or not digital assets that are held by a crypto exchange on behalf of platform users could be viewed as the exchange’s corporate assets in the proceeding, which in turn could be used to satisfy…

Introduction On June 7, U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) (together, the “Senators”) introduced the Responsible Financial Innovation Act, a bipartisan bill that seeks to create a comprehensive regulatory framework for digital assets.  The Senators have stated that the purpose of the proposed legislation is to balance innovation with customer protection. Coverage of the bill has been…

On June 1, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York (“SDNY”) and the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) unsealed an indictment charging Nathaniel Chastain, a products manager at OpenSea,[1] with one count of wire fraud and one count of money laundering for his alleged insider trading of Non-Fungible Tokens (“NFTs”).[2]…

Recent turmoil in the cryptocurrency market has brought issues related to crypto-asset custody to the forefront of the crypto currency discourse;[1] in an enormous $1 trillion crypto-asset crash between approximately May 6, 2022 and May 16, 2022, some coins lost up to 99% of their original value.[2]  Many crypto-asset investors are now wondering how their assets may be treated if…