Dutch Court Rules That Bitcoin Has “Properties of Wealth”
The Court of Amsterdam has found that bitcoin possesses “properties of wealth” following a civil rights case. Dutch repossession laws have been invoked to mandate the repayment of 0.591 BTC obliged by a contract between two individuals relating to bitcoin mining.
Dutch Court Publishing Findings Regarding Bitcoin Mining Contract
Earlier this week, the Court of Amsterdam published its findings in relation to a civil rights dispute between an individual and a private mining company.
The civil rights case was filed by Mr. JW de Vries on February 14 against Koinz Trading BV, with the court ruling in favor of the petitioner – who was owed 0.591 BTC by the company. Significantly, the Court of Amsterdam found that bitcoin possesses “properties of wealth”, determining that the claim of a bitcoin transfer under Dutch property rights is juridically valid.
The court judgment states “Bitcoin exists, according to the court, from a unique, digitally encrypted series of numbers and letters stored on the hard drive of the right-holder’s computer. Bitcoin is ‘delivered’ by sending bitcoins from one wallet to another wallet. Bitcoins are stand-alone value files, which are delivered directly to the payee by the payer in the event of a payment. It follows that a bitcoin represents a value and is transferable. In the court’s view, it thus shows characteristics of a property right. A claim for payment in Bitcoin is, therefore, to be regarded as a claim that qualifies for verification.”
Holland Sets Precedent for Legal Recognition of Bitcoin Contracts
The court’s decision is significant as it sets a precedent for the recognition of contractual agreements denominated in bitcoin in future, with the Court of Amsterdam concluding that “It is undisputed that it is clear that the claim that the applicant has seized has not been paid by the plaintiff.”
The court also took Holland’s Bankruptcy Act into consideration in making its determinations. “At the hearing, the applicant demonstrated the existence of several (aid) claims. From the documents submitted by the applicant, it appears that several persons have claims on the vested party that see the payment of Bitcoin or on claims for non-fulfillment of obligations under an agreement, with penalties attached in some cases. At the hearing, therefore, it appeared briefly that the applicant had a right of action, as well as facts and circumstances, which show that the applicant is in the position of having ceased to pay.”
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