On June 3, 2015, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) published its final BitLicense regulation. The regulation requires that firms engaged in “Virtual Currency Business Activity” that involves New York State or a New York resident apply to DFS for a BitLicense within 45 days of its effective date. In this Alert, the authors discuss the impact of the new regulation on businesses engaged in virtual currency transactions.

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Photo of William Mack William Mack

William B. Mack is a co-chair of the Financial Regulatory and Compliance Practice. He is experienced in advising companies on regulatory and compliance matters relating to the Securities and Exchange Commission regulations, the Exchange Act, Anti-Money Laundering laws and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

William B. Mack is a co-chair of the Financial Regulatory and Compliance Practice. He is experienced in advising companies on regulatory and compliance matters relating to the Securities and Exchange Commission regulations, the Exchange Act, Anti-Money Laundering laws and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) rules.

William’s practice involves all aspects of broker-dealer regulation, including Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO) membership, supervision, employment, research, soft dollar arrangements, chaperoning of foreign broker-dealers, social media, use of foreign finders, anti-money laundering rules, alternative trading systems (ATS), exchanges, and market making issues. He also provides regulatory guidance to investment banking clients in connection with securities offerings and related trading issues.

Photo of Carl A. Fornaris Carl A. Fornaris

Carl A. Fornaris is Co-Chair of the firm’s Financial Regulatory and Compliance Practice. With 27 years of legal experience, Carl advises a broad range of financial services firms – banks and their holding companies, money services businesses, investment advisers, securities broker dealers, gaming

Carl A. Fornaris is Co-Chair of the firm’s Financial Regulatory and Compliance Practice. With 27 years of legal experience, Carl advises a broad range of financial services firms – banks and their holding companies, money services businesses, investment advisers, securities broker dealers, gaming firms, Fintechs, cryptocurrency firms and other institutions – on all aspects of their business. These include formation and licensing, capital-raising transactions, acquisitions and divestitures, USA PATRIOT Act/BSA/AML compliance and OFAC sanctions programs, cryptocurrency regulation, mobile money and FinTech, federal and state agency enforcement proceedings, Dodd-Frank Act compliance and COVID-19/CARES Act economic stimulus program advice (ranging from Small Business Administration PPP loans to Federal Reserve Main Street program loans). Throughout his career, Carl has counseled clients in their dealings with the Federal Reserve, OCC, FDIC, FinCEN, SEC, FINRA, Florida Office of Financial Regulation, New York Department of Financial Services and other state supervisory authorities.

Carl is also active representing lenders and credit parties in financing transactions, particularly credits to non-U.S. loan parties, asset-based credits, acquisition financing and stand-by letters of credit.

Carl is a past General Counsel of the Florida International Bankers Association and sits on its Board of Directors. Previously, he served as Head of Legal and Compliance for the Latin America region of Barclays Bank PLC, with responsibility for managing legal and compliance matters throughout the region. Carl is an adjunct professor in the Business Law Department of the University of Miami Business School.

Photo of Steven M. Felsenstein Steven M. Felsenstein

Steven M. Felsenstein is Co-Chair of the Investment Management Practice and Co-Chair of the Financial Regulatory and Compliance Practice and focuses his practice on serving clients involved in financial services industries. He advises investment companies registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940…

Steven M. Felsenstein is Co-Chair of the Investment Management Practice and Co-Chair of the Financial Regulatory and Compliance Practice and focuses his practice on serving clients involved in financial services industries. He advises investment companies registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940, investment advisers registered under the Investment Advisers Act, and other administrators and service providers involved in the industry. Steven also represents broker-dealers and transfer agents registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and issuers of securities under the Securities Act of 1933. Steven represents clients in connection with administrative proceedings conducted by the SEC and FINRA, and participates in related actions. Steven’s prior practice includes experience as a staff member in the Division of Corporation Finance and as a Branch Chief in the Division of Investment Management at the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission.