Coinbase cleared in lawsuit over crypto transactions

The court’s decision hinged significantly on interpreting Coinbase’s user agreements, which evolved over time.

Coinbase, one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges, has achieved a significant victory in an ongoing lawsuit. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has ruled in favor of Coinbase, confirming that the secondary sales of cryptocurrencies on its platform do not violate the Securities Exchange Act.

The court’s decision affects a nationwide group of people who traded tokens on Coinbase from Oct. 8, 2019, to March 11, 2022. At the heart of the dispute was whether Coinbase’s traded cryptocurrencies met the criteria for securities.

The plaintiffs lodged federal claims under Sections 5, 12(a)(1), and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933, alongside Sections 5, 15(a)(1), 20(a), and 29(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. They also presented state law claims related to securities legislation in California, Florida, and New Jersey, representing a nationwide class of individuals.

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