Emerging Technology's Unfamiliarity with Commercial Law

119 Northwestern University Law Review Online 31 (2024)

SMU Dedman School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 590

18 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2023 Last revised: 20 Feb 2024

See all articles by Carla Reyes

Carla Reyes

Southern Methodist University - Dedman School of Law

Date Written: March 14, 2023

Abstract

Over the course of a three-year, collaborative process that was open to the public, the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) and the American Law Institute (ALI) undertook a project to revise the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) to account for the impact of emerging technologies on commercial transactions. The amendments, approved jointly by the ULC and ALI in July 2022, touch on aspects of the entire UCC, but one change has inspired ire and attracted national media attention: a proposed revision to the definition of “money.” The 2022 UCC Amendments alter the definition of “money” to account for the introduction of central bank digital currencies, such as the Bahamian Sand Dollar, and create a separate asset classification category for cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin—the controllable electronic record. Opponents of this change state concern that the UCC seeks to “ban” cryptocurrency or otherwise advantage central bank digital currencies and disadvantage cryptocurrencies. This essay examines this dispute over the 2022 UCC Amendments, and argues that it stems from a misunderstanding of core commercial law concepts. Ultimately, it seems, diminishing familiarity with commercial law—a side effect of expanding reliance on emerging financial technology products—stands as a key obstacle to the enactment of a legal changes designed to give the objectors the very legal effects they desire.

Keywords: commercial law, bitcoin, UCC, Universal Commercial Code, money, secured transactions

Suggested Citation

Reyes, Carla, Emerging Technology's Unfamiliarity with Commercial Law (March 14, 2023). 119 Northwestern University Law Review Online 31 (2024), SMU Dedman School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 590, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4388919 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4388919

Carla Reyes (Contact Author)

Southern Methodist University - Dedman School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 750116
Dallas, TX 75275
United States

HOME PAGE: http://bit.ly/Reyes-Carla-L

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
615
Abstract Views
4,249
Rank
82,140
PlumX Metrics