The US state of Ohio is currently proposing a change to state law through a bill which will legally recognize smart contracts and storage of records on a blockchain, according to Coindesk.
There are several states in the US that have adopted blockchain-associated laws. Vermont, Arizona, Delaware, Illinois, Nevada, and Tennessee are among these states. Indiana, Iowa, and Texas have taken a somewhat negative approach against cryptocurrencies or flagged them as potentially risky.
Some states have examined the governmental use of blockchain, either as isolated applications in specific or integrated government functions. Vermont, for example, recognizes data stored on a blockchain as admissible in the court system, according to Brookings.
Washington and New Hampshire have succeeded in passing some legislation and Arizona has introduced or passed regulations ranging from making signatures, transactions, and contracts on a blockchain legally valid, to allowing residents to pay their income tax in cryptocurrencies.
If Ohio becomes another blockchain state and the ‘Revise Electronic Transactions Act/blockchain/smart contracts’ bill signs into law, it will significantly pass ownership rights to those needing to store electronic information on the blockchain. Bill 300 states:
“Notwithstanding any other law, a person that, in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce, uses blockchain technology to secure information that the person owns or has the right to use retains the same rights of ownership or use with respect to that information as before the person secured the information using blockchain technology.”
Changes to the existing bill have notable inclusions in the amendment relating specifically to blockchain, making it clear that smart contracts will legally usable for legal documents.
Brookings research shows that in the past two years, a wave of states has started to shift attention to blockchain technology and explore the potential roles of the technology in public and private services.
Recently, Arizona passed a bill that allows residents of the state to use cryptocurrencies in making tax payments. Also, Wyoming passed its own bill through both legislatures early this year which exempts cryptocurrency from state property tax, potentially making it the friendliest state in the US to investors of crypto assets.
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