Lawrence Stephens


Cryptoassets continue to dominate the headlines. Despite their inherent volatility, investor sentiment remains strong. As crypto-specific regulation gains momentum in different jurisdictions, institutional and retail investors look set to increase in scope and scale.

The increasing maturity of cryptocurrencies and the wider digital assets sector provides new ways to conduct business, raise capital, invest, and gain access to a diverse range of emerging opportunities.

Digital assets built on blockchain or distributed ledger technologies (DLTs) therefore provide enormous potential for innovation and product development. Although widely discussed, the use of blockchain and DLT is often misunderstood. Meanwhile, the evolving regulatory landscape and divergent approaches of different regulators present a unique set of challenges for those engaged in cryptoassets.

Key regulators, including the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), are working towards creating a comprehensive regulatory framework for digital assets in their respective jurisdictions. Meanwhile, the European Parliament recently passed the Markets in Crypto-Assets Act (MiCA), providing a harmonized regulatory framework, which will enter into force in EU member states in the near future.

Our team of skilled lawyers combines extensive legal experience with a deep understanding of the sector, enabling us to offer innovative solutions to clients.

As the crypto sector continues to become more mainstream, disputes are inevitable. Drawing on our experience in cryptoasset dispute resolution and litigation, we are able to navigate the complexities that invariably arise. Our proficiency extends to asset tracing and recovery. Since cryptoassets can often prove difficult to identify and trace, our meticulous approach is vital in recovering them, particularly in relation to fraud, theft, and insolvency.

We are also well-placed to offer advice and provide solutions in more non-contentious areas, such as regulatory compliance, business-related services, and the practical integration and use of cryptoassets. From token classifications and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) to advising on and guiding through regulatory requirements and ensuring compliance, our sectoral understanding means that we can deliver clear advice and offer forward-thinking solutions.

As cryptoassets become part of everyday life, it is important to consider how they fit into long-term plans. Our cryptoasset team collaborates with other departments, ensuring that our clients receive comprehensive advice on a wide variety of issues, such as how to incorporate cryptoassets into wills and estate planning, and how to use them for significant purchases such as buying a property.