• Coinbase’s Chief Legal Officer Paul Grewal and XRP advocate John Deaton have voiced their concerns over the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) lack of guidance for companies seeking to adhere to regulatory requirements.
• The SEC has been accused of discouraging ethical behavior and exploiting voluntary disclosures by cryptocurrency enterprises in order to take enforcement action against them.
• Grewal and Deaton criticize the SEC for its attitude towards consulting legal advice as a preventive measure against infringement of law rather than evidence of an intention to break the law.

Coinbase’s Legal Chief Criticizes SEC’s Lack of Guidance

Coinbase’s Chief Legal Officer, Paul Grewal, has expressed his frustration with the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) refusal to guide cryptocurrency companies seeking to adhere to regulatory requirements. He believes that this stance is creating confusion within the crypto community as well as stifling innovation. XRP advocate and lawyer John Deaton also agreed with Grewal’s viewpoint, arguing that the SEC has exhibited an unfavorable bias against crypto firms which is discouraging responsible conduct.

SEC’s Interpretation of Seeking Advice on Token Sales

The SEC’s interpretation of seeking advice on lawful token sales has been controversial, as it interprets this action as a potential violation of the Securities Act’s Section 5. Grewal questions the logic behind this stance, noting that consulting legal advice is often done out of a desire to comply with regulations rather than deliberately breaking them. Similarly, Deaton argued that such actions should be encouraged rather than discouraged as they promote transparency in the industry.

SEC Accused Of Playing Favorites

Deaton further accused the SEC led by Gary Gensler of using transparent disclosure of partnerships and token sales information against companies in order to allege a shared interest among token holders. He claims that this tactic allows the SEC to suggest criminal intent even when none was present from companies who are simply trying their best to operate legally within their jurisdiction.

Impact On Innovation

The lack of clear guidance from US regulators has caused many members within the crypto space worry about its impact on innovation within the sector. Without specific rules or guidelines for businesses looking for ways around existing laws, many fear that progress will be slow due to uncertainty surrounding what exactly constitutes legitimate operation under current regulations.


Grewal and Deaton have both raised important points regarding how unclear regulation can negatively impact responsible businesses looking for ways around existing laws without breaking them in any way whatsoever. With cryptocurrencies becoming increasingly popular, it is crucial that governments provide some level clarity regarding how these firms can operate lawfully if they wish for innovation within this sector continue unhindered by unnecessary red tape or bureaucracy.

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