Italian Parliament Recognises Blockchain and Smart Contracts
By Patrizia Giannini, S4B Solutions 4 Business
Today, Blockchain is the one of the most discussed topics all over the world. On 13 February 2019, the Italian Parliament approved a law which recognises the legal validity of Blockchain and its applications in Smart Contracts; moreover, at the end of 2018, Italy formed a 30-member advisory panel focused on Blockchain and its applications.
Article 8 of this new law gives a definition of Blockchain and Smart Contract: “Technologies based on distributed ledgers are technologies and protocols using a shared, distributed, replicable ledger accessible simultaneously, architecturally decentralised on cryptographic basis, allowing registration, validation, updating and storage of noncryptographic data, that can be verified by each participant, but that can’t be modified or edited. “Smart Contract” is a programme for programmers that operates on technologies based on distributed ledgers and whose execution automatically binds two or more parties according to predefined terms. The smart contract satisfies the requirement of being in writing if the parties are electronically identified according to the requirements that will be established by the Agency for Digital Italy. The guidelines shall be adopted by mid-May 2019. Those smart contracts that meet the requirements that will be established by the Agency for Digital Italy will be considered as being in writing and this may contribute to the validity of the agreement itself”.
What is it Blockchain and how it can change our professions?
Blockchain is a decentralised database that keeps track of an unlimited number of data assets and transactions through a peer-to-peer network; a registry maintained by a consensus algorithm and stored in a network of computers. This allows data to be included in “blocks” that are chained one to another. Blockchain’s advantages are a) transparent processes, b) disintermediation, c) security, d) cost reductions and e) trust, because each transaction is verified by a wider number of nodes.
At the beginning, Blockchain was famous for cryptocurrencies but now its applications are innumerable, e.g. financial services, insurance sectors, in the enhancement of e-government services but also increased transparency and reduced administrative burdens, better customs collection and better access to public information, as well as automatic execution of contracts.
It is an undiscussed fact that today there is a huge buzz about this topic and great expectations in boosting the economics. And be assured that this new technology will deliver its effects also in litigation fields, in court; just to give an example, think about evidences verified by Blockchain.
Yes, there will be a revolution also in our courts, the question is: are we ready for this?
Patrizia GianniniS4B Solutions 4 Business, Rome, Italy
T: +39 06 8554961
S4B Solutions 4 Business provides assistance and consulting services in bookkeeping and accounting, management processes, personnel administration, support and advice on web communication and document management, welfare services and facility management. It serves all industries.
Patrizia Giannini, partner at S4B, was admitted to the Italian Bar in 1997 and before the Italian Supreme Court in 2009, she is a Civil Law Professor at ‘Cusano University’ Rome, Italy. Patrizia is also a Civil Arbiter, appointed by the Court of Rome in addition to being a Court-appointed Judicial Administrator and receiver. She is the European Regional Chair of GGI LDR Practice Group. Her main areas of practice include private and corporate civil practice, ADR, bankruptcy and receivership.
Published: Litigation & Dispute Resolution, No. 10, Spring 2019 l Photo: everythingpossible - stock.adobe.com