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Is Bitcoin Legal For Users Worldwide?

Is Bitcoin Legal For Users Worldwide?

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have captivated users since it first launched in 2009. With technology advancing, faster integration could take place, allowing for online transactions like Bitcoin casinos, shops, etc., to become more commonplace and have BTC accessible worldwide. 

Cryptocurrency is entirely decentralized, becoming the ideal avenue to explore to empower democracy rather than take away from it. While some countries have announced blanket bans, others have tried to partially integrate and regulate the flow and control it has in the economy.

Those who have shown the most interest in market regulation are tax authorities, enforcement agencies, and regulators. Many different countries have tried to regulate cryptocurrency. Here are the regions that cater to utterly legal Bitcoin interactions. 

Key Points 

  • The main concern raised by decentralized fiance is the issue of taxation,
  • Even though one can use it to buy goods and services, no international laws regulate cryptocurrency globally. 
  • Although many first-world countries condone the use of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, several countries like China and Egypt have deemed it illegal

The Legalities Around Cryptocurrency 

Bitcoin has been being explored since its initial launch in 2009. This form of digital currency can be used to complete transactions from two account holders worldwide, with the advantage of anonymity. 

With concerns rising, many countries took the forward-thinking approach, introducing legislation and rulings to help stabilize the lack of control and illicit ties cryptocurrency first became known for. 

To prevent any bad business, countries like the US and the United Kingdom have implemented regulations under the anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism laws (AML/CFT) to prevent any future mishaps. 

Another body that regulates the cryptocurrency industry is the Library of Congress (LOC), which examines and monitors countries’ approaches to BTC and other cryptocurrencies. In late 2021, LOC conducted a review and identified 103 countries that had, in fact, legalized and regulated the use of Bitcoin and other altcoins.

This diagram shows where bitcoin is legal for users worldwide

Countries Where Bitcoin Is Legal

With more than half the world legalizing the use of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, it’s easier than one may think to enjoy the benefits. Here is a list of some of the top countries where Bitcoin is legal, which was identified by the LOC.

The United States of America

The USA is easily the most powerful country globally, and with acceptance of crypto, it is paving the way to a new future for finance. Unlike most other countries, the US holds dual systems of governance, which means that different states can hold different laws. 

One of the most proactive states is New York, which implemented a licensing framework called the ‘BitLicense’ in 2016 for digital businesses like Bitcoin casinos and crypto exchange sites. Although each state holds its own laws, the overall consensus for cryptocurrency in the US remains positive. 

The European Union 

Unlike the USA’s Internal Revenue Service, which sees Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as property for taxation purposes, the European Union recognizes it as a crypto asset. Bitcoin and all altcoins are recognized as legal throughout the EUs territory with individual member state regulations held. 

The taxation within the European Union varies from country to country, with some tax charges reaching as high as 50% 

Canada

Neighboring the USA, Canada is another one of the world’s most-watched countries, becoming economically known as a top-performing country. Overall, Canada holds a generally positive view toward Bitcoin, and any income earned by the digital coins is seen as income tax by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). In order to ensure all operations are legit, all cryptocurrency exchanges need to register with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC).

Australia 

Very similar to that of Canada, Australia sees cryptocurrency as a financial asset, which means that the returns along with initial value can be taxed. For those that are looking to trade, exchange, sell, gift, convert it to fiat currency, or use Bitcoin for purchases, will need to pay capital gains tax.

El Salvador 

If you are a Bitcoin enthusiast, then El Salvador is your ideal haven, being the only country in the world to recognize Bitcoin as a legal tender. As of June 2021, the country became the first to approve the adoption of Bitcoin as a formal payment in congress. 

BTC is legal tender in El Salvidor

Other Countries Where Bitcoin Is Legal 

With 103 out of 195 countries legalizing the use of Bitcoin, it is clear that finance is headed in a new direction. Besides the countries mentioned above, there are several other countries where Bitcoin is legal. 

  • Denmark
  • France
  • Germany
  • Iceland
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Spain

Other countries where BTC is legal worldwide

Cryptocurrency Continues To Grow

Bitcoin and other altcoins have reinvented the finance ecosystem, creating a space for a more digital approach. As the integration picks up, countries worldwide are starting to regulate the industry. Take note of the countries where Bitcoin is legal to ensure the most secure practices.

Last updated by Jen Van Lier on February 7, 2022

About the editor

As website manager, Jen contributes reviews and updates to The Bitcoin Strip on a daily basis. Jen worked in the casino industry for 9 years before focusing on Bitcoin in 2016. She writes on subjects ranging from traditional slots all the way through to unique Bitcoin games, provable fairness and Ethereum smart contract gambling.

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