Bitwage Halts USDC Payments for US Residents, Cites ‘Strict Regulations’
Bitwage, a crypto payroll company, recently announced in an email to its customers that it will disable payments in USD Coin (USDC) for U.S. residents. The decision comes in response to the increased regulatory scrutiny of the cryptocurrency space in the United States.
Over the past month, financial regulators in the U.S. have escalated their regulatory actions against major crypto firms, including Binance and Coinbase. These actions have raised concerns among crypto companies about compliance and regulatory requirements.
Bitwage warned its users that if they fail to remove USDC from their wallets, their accounts will be reset by July 13. This means that users will have to set up their wallets and bank accounts again before they can receive their next paycheck.
However, Bitwage clarified that U.S. residents can still receive payments in other cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin (BTC), as well as stablecoin alternatives like CUSD (Celo), Tether’s USDT, and DAI.
It’s worth noting that this change will not impact non-U.S. residents who use Bitwage’s services.
This decision by Bitwage comes just days after the company announced a partnership with Vibrant, aiming to offer seamless and zero-fee USD stablecoin payments for remote workers worldwide.
Matt Ahlborg, a market research consultant at Bitrefill, suggested that this move could have a positive impact on Bitcoin. Ahlborg noted that the usage of Bitcoin as a utility asset has declined in recent years as stablecoins gained popularity. With the increasing restrictions on stablecoins, the pendulum may swing back towards Bitcoin.
According to Bitwage’s website, the company has processed over $200 million in payroll payments and has more than 50,000 workers registered on its platform. Bitwage is based in San Francisco and operates payroll services in the U.S., Europe, Latin America, and Asia.
At the time of writing, Bitwage had not responded to CryptoSlate’s request for comment on the matter.
Bitwage’s decision to disable USD Coin (USDC) payments for U.S. residents is a direct response to the increasing regulatory scrutiny of the crypto space in the country. The move aims to ensure compliance with strict regulations and avoid potential legal issues. While users will still have alternative payment options, such as Bitcoin and other stablecoins, this change may have implications for the usage and adoption of cryptocurrencies in payroll transactions. As the crypto regulatory landscape evolves, companies like Bitwage will need to navigate the changing environment to provide seamless and compliant services to their customers.