In a closely watched legal battle that carries significant consequences for the crypto market, the lawsuit between Ripple and the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) could be resolved through a settlement.
Intriguingly, the outcome of the case may be influenced by the potential change in the US presidency, which could lead to a shift in the regulatory environment surrounding the industry.
Ripple Case Update
Under Chair Gary Gensler’s leadership, the SEC has been actively cracking down on the crypto market, initiating lawsuits against major exchanges, firms, and participants.
This has created uncertainty regarding the legal status and classification of numerous crypto tokens within the industry. However, lawyer James Murphy, also known as “MetaLawMan,” suggests that a change in the regulatory environment against the industry may occur if the Democratic Party loses the presidency currently held by the Biden administration.
During an appearance on the ‘Thinking Crypto’ podcast, Murphy highlighted the possibility of a settlement in the Ripple case due to the 2024 election year and the potential for new management to take over the SEC.
Murphy emphasized the distinction between purchasing XRP and shares of a company like Amazon, with the latter categorized as a security. Murphy commended US District Judge Analisa Torres for granting Ripple a partial win and acknowledging the blockchain firm’s sale of XRP tokens to institutions as securities.
Murphy further noted that as the lawsuit progresses, the SEC and Ripple will likely appeal the court’s decisions. The SEC argues that many institutional sales were conducted outside its jurisdiction.
Murphy finds the upcoming election year significant, suggesting that a change in SEC leadership could lead to a more cooperative approach and a greater interest in reaching a reasonable settlement across various litigation cases.
Additionally, lawyer Fred Rispoli, senior managing partner at Hodl Law, shared his updated perspective on the XRP lawsuit. Under Judge Sarah Netburn, the US district court recently ordered Ripple to disclose its financial statements for 2022-2023.
This ruling aims to shed light on Ripple’s financial activities following the summary judgment, particularly focusing on the implications of its contracts and institutional sales.
Rispoli expressed his thoughts on the potential for the SEC to concede after the final order on damages eventually. However, he also believes the case might be subject to appeal, with a ruling from the 2nd Circuit not expected until mid-2026.
Rispoli criticized Ripple’s strategy in contesting the discovery, suggesting that transparency in post-complaint sales could have prevented future litigation on these transactions.
Eventual Victory For Coinbase?
In a separate case involving the SEC and Coinbase, Murphy highlighted a notable shift in the SEC’s stance. The agency allowed Coinbase to go public in 2021 and requested Congress to grant it authority to regulate cryptocurrency exchanges.
However, two years later, the SEC sued Coinbase for alleged violations of its registration as a Securities Exchange broker-dealer and clearing agency under existing SEC laws.
Murphy pointed out that SEC Chair Gary Gensler acknowledged the agency’s lack of authority to regulate digital assets before the House Financial Services Committee shortly after allowing Coinbase to go public.
The lawyer sees the SEC’s action against the crypto exchange as a breach of the Magna Carta and the American Constitution. Despite the ongoing legal battle, Murphy believes that Coinbase will eventually prevail.
Overall, the potential settlement in the Ripple vs. SEC lawsuit, the evolving regulatory landscape, and upcoming elections hint at a potential shift in the digital asset sector. As the legal proceedings unfold, the industry will closely monitor the outcomes and their implications for the future of crypto regulation.
Featured image from Shutterstock, chart from TradingView.com