Title

Understanding Block Chain and Distributed Financial Technology: New Rails for Payments and an Analysis of Article 4A of the UCC

Document Type

News Article

Publication Date

2016

Abstract

Although the hype around bitcoin has largely abated, the underlying technology behind it, distributed financial technology, is taking center stage. Against that backdrop this article discusses the application of distributed financial technology to funds transfers, as a new payment rail. Traditional payment service providers, such as banks, can use this technology as a decentralized payment mechanism to potentially make settlement quicker, less expensive, and safer. Distributed financial technology can be adapted to payment systems without necessarily involving the issuance of a digital currency, instead using fiat currencies (such as U.S. dollars, euros, or yen) to settle cross-border transactions. However, it is only with robust payment rules, such as state-law rules adopting the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), that such payments using distributed financial technology can effect a discharge of the underlying obligation to pay.

Publication Title

Business Law Today 25 no. 7