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Block Chain Round Up: 25 January 2018

Lots of interesting tidbits in our latest roundup. We’re especially intrigued by the mystery blockchain company that has bought up 60,000 acres of Nevada, in order to set up their global hq. As always, there’s a lawyer involved. Scroll down to learn more.

 

 

 

Title:  Linklaters joins forces with pioneering legaltech consortium

Author: Global Legal Post

Date: 25 January 2018

URL: http://www.globallegalpost.com/big-stories/linklaters-joins-forces-with-pioneering-legaltech-consortium-76705949/

Extract: 

The Magic Circle law firm has partnered with the Accord Project to launch a new consortium working with smart contract technology, blockchain and legal tech companies.

Linklaters has partnered with the Accord Project to launch a new and industry leading smart contract consortium. The project has been created to connect key players in the world of smart contract technology, blockchain and legal tech companies so that ideas and formats can be shared across the industry.

The Accord Project has been formed by US-based legal tech pioneer Clause in association with the International Association for Commercial and Contract Management (IACCM)and blockchain platform Hyperledger. The Accord Project will enable the legal industry to move from manual, paper-based processes to a natively digitised and data-driven environment. Richard Hay, UK Head of Fintech at Linklaters, comments: ‘This is a pioneering consortium project which we feel will drive change in the legal industry. We’re at a critical juncture for the industry – if we can come together to finesse how smart legal contracts operate, including the standardisation of format and protocols, then we really could be on the cusp of seeing the adoption of smart contracts for complex commercial cross border transactions.’

 

 

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Title: Virginia Lawmakers Seek Study on Government Blockchain Use

Author: Coindesk

Date: 24 January 2018

URL: https://www.coindesk.com/virginia-lawmakers-seek-study-on-government-blockchain-use/

Extract: 

Lawmakers in the U.S. state of Virginia hope to form a study group that would research the impact of implementing blockchain technology across some government services.

Introduced on Jan. 23, a new House Joint Resolution, if enacted, would establish a subcommittee to explore how blockchain could improve government operations including in areas such as state record-keeping, information storage and service delivery.

According to the proposal, the detailed scope of the study would include examining how feasible it would be to implement the technology, as well as coming up with a realistic estimated timeline and impact assessment for the implementation. Other focuses may also cover case study research and how existing laws can be amended to foster blockchain development in Virginia.

So far, the bill has been referred to Committee on Rules, records show.

 

Title: Bitcoin’s Blockchain Tech Could Bring Sweeping Innovation to Legal Industry

Author: The Legal Intelligencer

Date: 24 January 2018

URL: https://www.law.com/thelegalintelligencer/sites/thelegalintelligencer/2018/01/24/bitcoins-blockchain-tech-could-bring-sweeping-innovation-to-legal-industry/

Extract: 

It may not be clear from the technical explanation, but blockchain may provide a remedy for two of the most fundamental issues common to all areas of the legal practice. First, the blockchain allows for the creation and maintenance of incredibly reliable public records that are virtually impossible to counterfeit, or otherwise fraudulently alter. Second, blockchain allows for parties to transact with one another without the need for any sort of trusted middle party, such a as a bank, court, or government, to oversee the transaction to ensure the desired results

 

Title:  SEC CHAIRMAN CRITICIZES ICOS, IRRESPONSIBLE LAWYERS

Author: Dow Bit

Date: 24 January 2018

URL: https://dowbit.com/sec-ico-warning/

Extract: 

US Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Jay Clayton heavily criticized lawyers who help arrange some ICOs. In a speech at Northwestern’s Pritzker School of Law on Monday, Clayton said that he hopes securities lawyers, accountants, underwriters, and dealers will act responsibly.

Companies which raise capital through the controversial initial coin offering should disclose all the risks to investors, according to Clayton. Those that don’t, could be in legal trouble. He has directed his staff to be vigilant for creative legal workarounds for US securities laws.

I have instructed the SEC staff to be on high alert for approaches to ICOs that may be contrary to the spirit of our securities laws and the professional obligations of the U.S. securities bar.

 

Title: 7 ways blockchain will change the legal industry forever

Author: Tech Radar

Date: 18 January 2018

URL: http://www.techradar.com/news/7-ways-blockchain-will-change-the-legal-industry-forever

Extract:

When we think of high-tech industries, the legal sector is hardly one that comes to mind. After all, lawyers are often buried in the proverbial mountain of paperwork and the classic film about the legal profession is ‘The Paper Chase’, which ends with papers being blown all over the campus quad.

However, the blockchain has the ability to disrupt the practice of law, and drag it into the current century – there’s already a Global Legal Blockchain Consortium which seeks to standardize and promote its adoption. Here are seven ways in which the blockchain will make a big impact on the legal world.

 

Title: Smart Contracts Are Taking Over Functions of Lawyers: Expert Blog

Author: Coin Telegraph

Date: 12 January 2018

URL: https://cointelegraph.com/news/smart-contracts-are-taking-over-functions-of-lawyers-expert-blog

Extract: 

After reading about how a partner in one of the biggest and most prestigious international law firms was busted by an undercover US Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) agent for trying to garner Bitcoins in a corrupt transaction from a Silicon Valley tech company, it’s likely you won’t feel sad about smart contracts beginning to take over certain functions of lawyers. You might even secretly thank Ethererum’s co-inventor Vitalik Buterin, for it.

 

Title: “Mysterious” Blockchain company buys more than 60,000 acres in Northern Nevada

Author: Review Journal

Date: 24 January 2018

URL: https://www.reviewjournal.com/business/blockchain-company-buys-more-than-60000-acres-in-northern-nevada/

Extract: 

Records show the company is linked to Jeffrey Berns, managing partner of Southern California law firm Berns Weiss and co-founder of its virtual currency practice group.

Gilman initially declined to name Blockchains’ owners but confirmed that Berns is part of the group.

Berns did not return a call seeking comment.

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