The US cryptocurrency regulation landscape is complex patchwork of laws and regulations regarding money services businesses (MSBs) and virtual currencies, crypto, cryptocurrency, and virtual assets. Each state and territory has its own set of laws and regulations, and compliance requirements can vary widely. In many cases, a money transmitter license (MTL) would suffice to operate with cryptocurrency.
Additionally, MSBs and virtual currency service providers operating in the United States are subject to federal regulations, including those issued by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). In general, MSBs and virtual currency service providers are required to register with FinCEN and comply with anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) regulations.
Each of the 50 states and the federal territory of Washington D.C. have their own set of rules, as well as the US territories of Guam, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands. We have compiled a detailed list of licensing requirements for cryptocurrency, state by state, in the table below. This list is a work in progress and is continuously updated to reflect the evolving US cryptocurrency regulation landscape. It is important to note that while some states have clear regulations in place, others have yet to establish specific guidelines for MSBs operating in the virtual currency space. The regulatory framework at the federal level is also still evolving, with various agencies issuing guidance on how existing laws may apply to virtual currencies.
Work in Progress. Expected to be finished by the end of February 2023.
US Cryptocurrency Regulation
Cryptocurrency Laws: State by State
|Description||Licensing Status||Law/Legislature||Remarks, Important Notes & External References||Regulator|
Bill was vetoed by the Governor (23 Sep 2022).
|o AB-2269 Digital financial asset businesses: regulation|
o California Assembly Bill 2269
|o California State Assembly passes bill for licensing and regulating crypto firms||o The Department of Financial Protection & Innovation|
A license is required.
|o CS/HB 273: Money Services Businesses|
o Florida Statue: Money Services Business
|o Florida Currency Laws|
o Greenberg Traurig: Opinion on Virtual Currency Licensing
|o Florida Office of Financial Regulation|
A BitLicense is required.
|o Department of Financial Services|
o BitLicense Home Page
|US Virgin Islands|