The US Senate Judiciary Committee has announced its work on bill S.1241, which would criminalize the concealment of financial accounts – including cryptocurrencies.
A new bill presently being drafted by the Senate Judiciary Committee may have huge ramifications for cryptocurrency traders in the United States, as investors may in future have to disclose their portfolios to satisfy new legislation.
The bill – presently termed by the designation S.1241 – amends the definition of ‘financial account’ and ‘financial institution’ to take into account both cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency exchanges. The bill is ultimately intended to update existing anti-money laundering legislation.
The update would essentially force cryptocurrency investors in the United States to fully disclose their portfolios, or potentially run the risk of facing criminal charges for concealing their financial accounts.
The bill would effectively amend the definition of ‘financial institution’ found within Section Section 53412(a) of title 31 in the United States Code, to read “An issuer, redeemer, or cashier of prepaid access devices, digital currency, or any digital exchanger or tumbler of digital currency.”
The move comes after recent reports from the White House that indicated that its staff is actively monitoring developments in digital currencies – specifically that of Bitcoin.
Though the announcement will not specifically introduce regulations or stipulations surrounding the use of digital currencies within the United States, the bid does represent one of the US Government’s first forays into drafting cryptocurrencies into existing laws.
Other nations around the world have taken varying approaches. Russia has announced that it will heavily regulate cryptocurrency mining and trading within its borders, while nations such as Taiwan have conversely announced their support for the entrepreneurial climate created by the emergence of digital currencies.
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