The impact of regulations targeting cryptocurrencies is being felt again in the United States. This time it is the State of Washington which seems to be at the receiving end after Bitstamp announced that it won’t be providing services in the “Evergreen State”.
The platform’s mail to its customers reads,
“After long and careful deliberation, we are sorry to inform you that due to recent regulatory constraints imposed by the State of Washington, Bitstamp will cease to serve customers from The Evergreen State, effective 20th December 2016.
We kindly ask you to withdraw your funds by 20th December 2016 by means of Bitcoin or international wire. Your account will be closed after the deadline has expired.
We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. We are actively working to restart our services within the State of Washington and we will inform you as soon as the situation is resolved.
In the meantime, should you have any question, please feel free to reach out to our support at www.bitstamp.net/support/”
Bitstamp is one of the leading European cryptocurrency platform operating out of Luxembourg, United Kingdom , and the United States. The platform has not offered any clear explanation regarding the specificities of the regulations responsible for its decision. However, the platform currently holds a Payments Institution License issued by the Luxembourg Ministry of Finance making it the first regulated and licensed cryptocurrency platform in the Europe. Bitstamp’s license is valid across all the European Union nations.
Armed with the Payments Institution License, Bitstamp is already subject to various AML and KYC regulations along with frequent audits to ensure compliance in accordance with the EU laws. Introduction of similar conditions by the State of Washington will be of little concern to the platform, unless few drastic changes or compliance requirements are stated by the state authorities for cryptocurrency exchanges.
In the wake of recent incident involving Coinbase and the US Internal Revenue Service, Bitstamp may as well be insulating itself from any additional hassles it might face due to recent developments. Few people also believe that the complicated financial regulations of Washington State are to be blamed for Bitstamp’s decision to stop serving customers in its jurisdiction.
For now, existing Bitstamp customers from the region have another 14 days to withdraw Bitcoin deposits from their respective accounts.
Ref: Reddit | Image: Bitstamp