Cryptocurrencies and Code Before the Courts (Blog Post)

Machine Lawyering Blog, 2019

2 Pages Posted: 17 Oct 2019 Last revised: 29 Oct 2020

See all articles by Vincent Ooi

Vincent Ooi

Singapore Management University - School of Law; Singapore Management University - Centre for AI & Data Governance

Kian Peng Soh

Singapore Management University

Date Written: September 30, 2019

Abstract

In the rapidly developing cyber sphere of e-commerce and Fintech, dominated by cryptocurrencies and code, it is perhaps not uncommon for firms to focus on cutting-edge technological developments, leaving the law behind as an afterthought. However, the case of B2C2 Ltd v Quoine Pte Ltd (“B2C2”) may serve as a timely reminder of the importance of the legal principles supporting e-commerce and Fintech. In the first case of its kind, B2C2 raised several key questions before the Singapore International Commercial Court, seeking clarification on how the established legal concepts of breach of trust, mistake and unjust enrichment might apply in the context where an automated contract-forming software had produced unusual results. This decision represents the most comprehensive treatment by a Commonwealth court of the legal nature of cryptocurrencies and automated contract-forming software to date; a harbinger of further and more complex litigation to come, as disputes involving e-commerce and Fintech gradually start to reach the courts. In our recent case note, Cryptocurrencies and Code before the Courts (forthcoming in Kings Law Journal), we examine the decision in B2C2 and argue that while the case appeared novel, proper characterisation of the facts allowed existing legal doctrines to be applied.

Keywords: Contract Law, Artificial Intelligence, Cryptocurrencies, Fintech

Suggested Citation

Ooi, Vincent and Soh, Kian Peng, Cryptocurrencies and Code Before the Courts (Blog Post) (September 30, 2019). Machine Lawyering Blog, 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3466126 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3466126

Vincent Ooi (Contact Author)

Singapore Management University - School of Law ( email )

55 Armenian Street
Singapore, 179943
Singapore

HOME PAGE: http://vincentooi.com

Singapore Management University - Centre for AI & Data Governance ( email )

55 Armenian Street
Singapore
Singapore

Kian Peng Soh

Singapore Management University ( email )

Li Ka Shing Library
70 Stamford Road
Singapore 178901, 178899
Singapore

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