UK Dependency Adjusts Laws for Digital Currency
The government of Jersey is pushing ahead with its previously announced plans to regulate digital currency exchange activity.
Authorities in the British Crown dependency announced a plan to introduce legislation just under a year ago. At the time, government representatives expressed a desire to avoid a full-on licensure scheme similar to the BitLicense pursued by New York, but with a registration system for certain service providers.
According to a government order published on 23rd September by the State Assembly, Jersey's legislature, anyone operating as a digital currency exchanger is exempt from registration requirements if their annual turnover is less than £150,000. The order came into force on 26th September.
In the event that the service provider goes over that annual amount, they have up to three months to notify the Jersey government or face potential sanction, according to the documents.
The order states:
"Article 4 makes transitional provision for the case where turnover first exceeds £150,000, so that a person carrying on such a business will not be criminally liable if, within a period of three months beginning with the day on which the turnover reaches or exceeds that figure, the person makes an application for registration under the 2008 law."
Separately, documents show, the Jersey legislature has also approved a change to the dependency's money laundering statutes that captures digital currency exchangers.
According to the order, "the business of providing the service of virtual currency exchange is introduced into the categories of financial services business regulated by the [Money Laundering Order]".
The orders reflects the outcome of a consultation process begun last year by Jersey's government.
At the time, Senator Philip Ozouf, the island's assistant chief minister, said that "virtual currency systems represent a new and empowering technology" and that the government was hoping to craft "appropriate" policies around it.
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