U.S. Uniform Law Commission Asks State to Refrain from Enacting Virtual Currencies Legislation


In what may prove to be a major development, the U.S. Uniform Law Commission (ULC) has asked states, which consider adopting virtual currency legislation, to refrain from creating such legislation until the commission completes its assessment of the impact of emerging technologies on the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC).

The ULC is a nonprofit organization formed back in 1892 with an aim to create nonpartisan state legislation. Its pieces of legislation tackle different areas such as property, family and criminal law, as well as commercial law, etc.

As this is a developing story due to the “war of statement” between Forbes and ULC, currently taking place mainly on Twitter, let us take a step back and look at the timeline of events which have contributed to the current situation.

Forbes.com has published a total of three articles, (see the list below), during the month of March, which relate to recently enacted virtual currency legislation in Wyoming. The ULC contacted Forbes to ask for a correction of statements made in the first article published by Andrea Tinianow on March 7.

1.“A Split Emerges In Blockchain Law: Wyoming’s Approach Versus The Supplemental Act” by Andrea Tinianow, published March 7, 2019;

2.“Part Two: A Split Emerges In Blockchain Law: Wyoming Approach Versus Supplemental Act. A Postscript” by Andrea Tinianow, published March 24, 2019;

3.“Seismic News About State Virtual Currency Laws: ULC Urges States To Withdraw Model Act,” by Caitlin Long, published March 25, 2019

As ULC’s request for correction was refused by Forbes, the commission issued the first statement, to address Ms. Tinianow’s article, as the article allegedly contains “some inaccuracies about both the Supplemental Act and the ULC”.

Five days later, Ms. Tinianow published another article to, in a nutshell, double down on her first article and explain why she thinks she is not wrong.

“I believe the ULC’s concerns to be without merit,” said Andrea Tinianow. She also concludes her second article with a note that is “alarming that the ULC created the Supplemental Act to enable fractional-reserve banking for virtual currencies”.

The ULC responded again with another tweet.

Moreover, the ULC responded with a statement next day to announce that ULC and American Law Institute (ALI) “have created a study committee to determine how the Code (the UCC) might be amended on a uniform basis to deal with emerging technologies.”It also invites relevant parties and entities to “sign up to participate and help draft uniform state law”.

Then there comes the most recent Forbes article published by Caitlin Long only two days ago, where she calls ULC’s statement “the major news” and describes the background of the statement exchange between her media outlet and the ULC.

It didn’t take too long before ULC hit back with another statement. In response to Forbes, published yesterday in form of an official statement, ULC addresses “three articles published by contributors to Forbes.com”. The Commission criticizes these three articles by saying that it “contain(s) inaccuracies about both the Supplemental Act and the ULC,” thus the aim of the response is to (again) “correct those inaccuracies and to discuss how to create effective laws to deal with transactions using emerging technologies”.

In the second part of the response, UCL addresses “inaccuracies” allegedly found in these articles, published by different Forbes contributors, while placing special focus on “inaccuracies about both the Supplemental Act and the ULC”.

The commission adds that “states are urged to refrain from enacting legislation, like the new Wyoming law, that could conflict with provisions of the UCC”, as there are “significant problems with the new state law the Wyoming legislation”. The commission also finds that Wyoming law contradicts the UCC and principles of commercial law to create “uncertainty in the market”.

ULC concludes that it will “determine how the UCC might be amended on a uniform basis to deal with these issues,” however, until that stage has been reached, states are urged to refrain from enacting such legislation.

The commission also labeled Long’s latest article as “fake news” in a tweet published yesterday, by attaching ULC’s latest statement.

As this is proving to be a never-ending drama, Newconomy will keep readers posted on the subject.