Saturday, November 11, 2017

"Coinbase Likely to Lose Fight to Block IRS Customer Probe"

Factoids for you:
  • Anonymity is one of the selling points of cryptocurrencies.
  • Coinbase is the largest crypto exchange in the U.S.
  • Magistrate judges are the 'helper' judges of the Federal District Court system. Their rulings on admin stuff such as whether a motion or submission will proceed can make or wreck your day.
  • We've met Judge Corley on other matters, Uber was sadder for the experience.
 Link below.

From Bloomberg, Nov. 9:
Coinbase Inc. customers who haven’t reported their cryptocurrency gains to the Internal Revenue Service, beware.
A federal judge is poised to allow a limited investigation into those gains to proceed over the company’s objection that the agency is on “a massive fishing expedition” meant to make itself look tough in the eyes of its critics in Congress.

"It’s legitimate for them to investigate whether people are making money on their bitcoin purchases" and paying taxes on any gains, U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley in San Francisco told lawyers for Coinbase at a hearing Thursday. "I have to give tremendous discretion to the agency as to how they investigate," she added later.

Corley indicated she will allow the IRS to investigate Coinbase customers who made money on the currency and bar the agency from probing accounts of those who hadn’t. The judge also said she’ll probably give Coinbase time to appeal her decision before it turns over any customer information. The price of bitcoin fell as much as 1 percent on the news.

The company has been sparring since last year with the IRS over its summons -- and continued to resist turning over the information even after the agency scaled back its request in July. Coinbase and industry trade groups contend the government’s concerns about tax fraud are unfounded and that its sweeping demand for information is a threat to privacy....MORE
June 7, 2017
Double Hit To Uber: Judge Alsup Denies Uber’s Request for Stay, Gives Waymo Fatherly Advice; Magistrate Judge Corley Approves Waymo Request to Peek at Dirty Laundry
Uber Technologies Inc. lost a battle to prevent Waymo from seeing an internal report the Alphabet Inc. unit is betting will show that its former engineer colluded with the ride-hailing giant to steal driverless technology.

The ruling by U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley in San Francisco may prove pivotal in a trade-secrets case headed to trial that could influence who wins the race to market self-driving cars. David A. Perlson, an attorney for Waymo, confirmed the ruling in a court hearing Wednesday....MORE 
So yeah, when the Magistrate Judge is making decisions that "may prove pivotal" not just to the instant case but to the company's very survival you listen up and say "Yes ma'am".