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What the DAO?: A Series on the Legal Issues Raised by the Latest Crypto Trend

July 18, 2022


DAOs, or decentralized autonomous organizations, are the latest trend in crypto. DAOs have the potential to disrupt the traditional economic system, but, they also raise significant issues of securities, tax, bankruptcy corporate law. Over the last few months, our Fintech group has issued a series of client alerts exploring these issues. You can find our complete collection below.



What the DAO? Why Everyone Is Talking About Decentralized Autonomous Organizations

Our introductory alert defines DAOs for the uninitiated and provides a preview of DAO-related corporate and regulatory issues. Read More


Securities, Regulations, and DAOs

The hottest questions in the cryptoverse focus on how digital assets—and DAOs, in particular—will be regulated. In this edition of our series, we take a deeper dive into the securities and regulatory issues raised by DAOs. Read more


Nothing Is Certain—Especially DAOs and Taxes

Even as the digital asset economy has evolved at lightning speed, the tax law has not. This has left investors and creators, and their advisors, with questions, lots of them, including how to apply the existing tax framework to DAOs. In this alert, we turn our attention to the tax implications of DAOs. Read More


DAOs and Bankruptcy

We have seen some of what DAOs can do, but what opportunities might they have to purchase assets from a distressed or defunct entity in bankruptcy? Can the benefits of using a DAO be coupled with the 363 sale process to acquire assets “free and clear” under the supervision of a bankruptcy court? What are the advantages and disadvantages associated with using a DAO? This alert explores these issues and attempt to answer some of those questions. Read More


DAOs: Looking for Limited Liability & Legal Personality

DAOs cannot do everything. To contract with stakeholders and perform traditional functions—while also limiting personal liability—DAOs need to take on legal form. We look at promising legal entities that remedy some of the limitations, including those in the Cayman Islands, Singapore, Vermont, Wyoming, Tennessee, and Colorado. No entity answers every question, but they all offer some private ordering in a decentralized world. Read More


SOS! DAO in Distress!

The growth of DAOs and the proliferation of alternative corporate structures leads to an important question for DAOs in distress: is a DAO considered a debtor under the Bankruptcy Code? This alert explores the nuances of qualifying a DAO as a debtor and its practical implications. Read More