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Texas Senate clears Crypto Bill

‘House Bill 4474’ or the ‘Virtual Currency Bill’ has passed the Texas Senate, and now it will go to Governor Greg Abbott to receive the final signature to become a law.

Although there weren’t any restrictions in dealing with cryptocurrencies, with the bill now in place, there is legal clarity to define virtual currencies and provide a series of guidelines for companies residing in the state wanting to deal in the cryptocurrency business.

The bill mentions Virtual Currency as a means of digital representation of value that:

  1. Is used as a medium of exchange, a unit of account, or a store of value.
  2. It is not legal tender, whether or not denominated in legal tender, and does not include:
    • A transaction in which a merchant grants, as part of an affinity or rewards program, the value that cannot be taken from or exchanged with the merchant for legal tender, bank credit, or virtual currency.
  3. A digital representation of value issued by or on behalf of the publisher and used solely within an online game, game platform, or family of games sold by the same publisher or offered on the same game platform.

The bill was discussed at a public hearing by the Texas House of Representatives Pensions, Investments & Financial Services Committee on April 14, with further talks on revised revisions of the bills on April 16. The bill received unanimous bipartisan support.

As of now, 25 states in the United States are formulating legislation to incorporate cryptocurrencies, with many states having quite contrasting stance over it. For example, Alabama state has indefinitely postponed the talks on crypto bills. On the other hand, Massachusetts has a house bill 126 seeking to establish special commissions and members of the General Court on Blockchain and cryptocurrency.

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