The Chamber of Digital Commerce, a leading voice representing the trillion-dollar U.S. digital asset industry, is set to make a critical appearance in the SEC v Coinbase case, demonstrating the mounting tensions between regulatory bodies.
As an Aug. 22 court filing indicates, the Chamber’s involvement signals a critical moment for the industry as law firm McDermott Will & Emery will represent the Chamber in court as part of an Amicus Curiae appearance.
An Amicus Curiae, which translates from Latin to “friend of the court,” is a legal term referring to someone who is not a party to a case but who offers information, expertise, or insight that bears on the case. They provide this assistance to the court in the form of a brief to help the court make an informed judgment. The role of an Amicus Curiae can be critical in cases where the court feels that it needs more information before making a decision.
Chamber of Digital Commerce position vs. SEC.
On Aug. 11, the Chamber entered the legal fray, filing an amicus brief to quell the SEC’s most recent attempt to regulate the digital asset industry. The Chamber’s plea contends that lacking the delegated legislative authority, the SEC should have its case dismissed, effectively halting its perceived overreach into the digital asset market.
The Chamber alleges the SEC’s continuous aggressive enforcement of digital asset companies like Coinbase stifles innovation within the industry, a potential violation of the central questions doctrine. According to the Chamber, the SEC’s action against Coinbase has raised “constitutional concerns regarding separation of powers and due process and has put the industry and its stakeholders at risk.”
Perianne Boring, Founder and CEO of The Chamber of Digital Commerce, commented on the SEC’s actions, saying, “This case is yet another example of the SEC acting outside of its legislative mandate and regulating by enforcement.” Boring added, “We are hopeful that the Court will consider the arguments laid out in our brief, and we will continue to fight against the SEC’s overreach.”
This legal battle occurs when both chambers of Congress are considering legislation that could constrain the SEC’s regulatory authority over digital assets. As these legislative debates ensue, the SEC’s actions against Coinbase become increasingly problematic.
Joseph Evans, Co-Chair of the FinTech & Blockchain Practice and Head of Crypto Litigation and Regulatory Defense at McDermott, Will & Emery, criticized the SEC’s approach, stating,
“The SEC has failed the digital asset industry by refusing to work cooperatively through the provision of prospective guidance.
Rather, the SEC’s regulation-by-enforcement campaign disserves the millions of law-abiding individuals that use digital assets and the professionals that work in the industry.”
As the legal proceedings continue, the outcome of SEC v Coinbase will undoubtedly set a precedent for the future of digital asset regulation. With the Chamber of Digital Commerce stepping in, this case highlights the critical role of the crypto industry in defending its interests and providing a voice for its stakeholders in significant regulatory debates.