Smart Contracts

Smart contracts are becoming more popular by the day, so it is crucial to know the legalities around it

One of the biggest challenges that enterprises are currently facing is the lack of trust while adopting cryptocurrencies and decentralized networks to conduct business operations. Due to the lack of trust, transparency, and rising concerns around scams, most organizations are acting cautiously and spending significant time and money on intermediaries while finalizing agreements. The implementation of smart contracts can improve this situation by removing third-party intervention in cases in which contract conditions can be observed publicly. Smart contracts act as the building blocks of trust and transparency between distinct parties. They enable the creation of immutable and accessible contracts. The integration of smart contracts has become a critical component of several platforms and applications, hence, the knowledge of smart contract regulations has become equally important. But to understand the smart contract laws and regulations, you need to first interpret how these contracts work. So, let’s dive into understanding what smart contracts actually are.


What are smart contracts?

A smart contract is a computer code that runs on a blockchain and enables secure value exchange. They can remove the need for a mediator when two parties wish to exchange valuable digital or physical assets. Smart contracts are applications of blockchain relying on a decentralized, immutable public. It records the contracts as computer codes that contain the conditions involved in a contract. When all conditions are met, the contract is eventually activated. Whenever a smart contract is drawn up, it is stored as a block of data on the blockchain. Once the conditions are equally met, it then executes the terms. 

Smart contracts are generally popular for their innovative way to handle complex agreements. They may even influence the shape of future contracts due to their automated nature. 


Why have smart contracts become important?

Smart contracts are an emerging technology that can increase efficiency in distinct enterprises. As the popularity of the technology grows, more and more organizations join hands to reap the benefits that are offered by these smart contracts. They have become quite valuable because these contracts have the capability to replace agents that mediate agreements in cases where agreement terms are observed publicly and digitally. Traditional agreements and contracts might seem quite tedious due to the involvement of intermediaries and paperwork. Since smart contracts eliminate the need for any third-party involvement, they can be executed even faster. Besides, executing contracts and transactions on the blockchain is secure.


The legalities revolving around smart contracts

Smart contracts execute automatically and once they are set, they cannot be modified. Experts have revealed that there are several challenges to the automatic reinforcement of smart contracts. If it turns out that the terms of a smart contract are not legal to enforce, it creates a more difficult situation than the traditional-paper form of contract. The nature of smart contracts is unique, hence, they differ from traditional paper contracts. 

Legally, individuals cannot use a contract to bind parties to terms that are illegal to enforce. Like, asking either party to waive certain rights that cannot be legally waived will eventually nullify that section of the agreement. Finally, smart contracts need to be legally eligible for electronic signatures. Some types of agreements cannot be signed electronically, including wills and other estate documents, court orders, product recall notices, involving health and safety. 


Bottom line

Blockchain technology and smart contracts have been fueling the adoption of cryptocurrencies on a global scale. The need to understand the legalities and regulations while handling such trending financial technologies is of extreme importance. While there are still some business enterprise leaders and individuals who are afraid to venture out into the smart contract domain, it is quite evident that the future calls for virtual agreements, and quick adaption to the emerging technologies would be the right answer.