The commercial court of the French city of Nanterre recognized bitcoin as a convertible intangible asset, essentially equating it to fiat currency. The decision was made on February 26, but it became known only now.
According to the publication Les Echos, a precedent was created during the consideration of the dispute between the French cryptocurrency exchange Paymium and the British investment company BitSpread.
In 2014, Paymium lent BitSpread 1000 BTC. However, after the Bitcoin hard fork in August 2017, all coin holders received Bitcoin Cash cryptocurrency in a 1: 1 ratio. To clarify whether the borrower is required to additionally return the amount to BCH, Paymium went to court.
The court found that, by its legal nature, it is an interchangeable asset and, by analogy with fiat, the general principles of lending apply to it:
“The ownership of the asset throughout the duration of the agreement remains with the borrower. BCH belongs to the borrower, as well as dividends to the shareholder. ”
Attorney Hubert de Wauplan of Kramer & Levin believes that the decision of the Commercial Court will allow the legal use of bitcoin as money and stimulate an increase in the number of transactions with it in France.
Earlier, the German regulator recognized cryptocurrencies as financial instruments.
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