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Virtual Currency Licensing

In August 2013, DFS announced its inquiry into the appropriate regulatory guidelines for virtual currencies. As part of an ongoing fact-finding effort informing that inquiry, the Department held public hearings in January 2014. In March 2014, the Department issued a public order announcing it will be considering formal proposals and applications for the establishment of regulated virtual currency exchanges operating in New York.

BitLicense Regulatory Framework

In July 2014, the Department initiated a State Administrative Procedures Act process and published a draft of proposed rules for a BitLicense regulatory framework in the New York State Register.  In June 2015, the Department published final rules reflecting comments received in response to those initial proposed those rules and proposed revisions published the New York State Register in February.

Public comments received by the Department in response to the proposed rules published in 2014 and 2015 may be viewed on our BitLicense Regulatory Framework page.

BitLicense FAQs

The Department has prepared responses to a series of frequently asked questions about BitLicense, including which activities may require licensure and which may be exempt. These questions and answers may be updated from time to time as necessary.

Applications

The BitLicense application form contains instructions on the application process.  Application for a BitLicense may be submitted pursuant to the final rules using the BitLicense form below:

Completed Applications may be submitted in hardcopy to:
New York State Department of Financial Services
Virtual Currency Applications
One State Street, 7th Floor
New York, NY 10004-1511

Questions

Questions regarding the VC license or licensing process may be referred to VCLicenseQuestions@dfs.ny.gov and should include contact information.

Licensed Virtual Currency Businesses

For a list of businesses licensed to conduct virtual currency business activity in New York State visit our Who We Supervise page and use the application to search for Virtual Currency. Please note that the primary institutions that result in a virtual currency search are only those that have a BitLicense from DFS. Certain other state-chartered trust companies are also authorized to deal in virtual currency with prior approval or authorization of the Department.

News

Date Subject
September 10, 2018

DFS Continues to Foster Responsible Growth in New York’s Fintech Industry with New Virtual Currency Product Approvals

July 16, 2018

DFS Grants Virtual Currency License to Bitpay, Inc.

June 18, 2018 DFS Grants Virtual Currency License to Square, Inc.
June 14, 2018 DFS Continues to Advance Responsible Growth in New York’s Fintech Industry with New Virtual Currency Approvals
May 17, 2018

DFS Continues Actions to Support Responsible Innovation in New York’s Fintech Industry

May 14, 2018

DFS Authorizes Gemini Trust Company to Provide Additional Virtual Currency Products and Services

November 28, 2017

DFS Grants Virtual Currency License to Bitflyer Usa, Inc

March 22, 2017

DFS Authorizes Coinbase, Inc. to Provide Additional Virtual Currency Products and Services

January 17, 2017

DFS Grants Virtual Currency License to Coinbase, Inc.

June 13, 2016

DFS Grants Virtual Currency License to XRP II, LLC, an Affiliate of Ripple

May 5, 2016

Governor Cuomo Announces Approval of First U.S.-Based Ethereum Exchange, Created and Operated in New York

October 5, 2015

NYDFS Grants Charter to "Gemini" Bitcoin Exchange Founded by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss

September 22, 2015

NYDFS Announces Approval of First Bitlicense Application from a Virtual Currency Firm

May 7, 2015

NYDFS Grants First Charter to a New York Virtual Currency Company

Updated 05/18/2018

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