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FinTech Legal and Regulatory IssuesFinTech Lawyer & Legal Services in Pakistan

FinTech Legal Issues

If you’ve ever paid for something with your phone, transferred money using an app or checked your bank statement online, then you’re already part of a multi-billion dollar industry. It’s called fintech, and it’s changing economies around the world. Fintech is short for Financial Technology – seems simple, right?

FinTech Legal Disputes

Well, the term fintech includes a huge range of products, technologies, and business models that are changing the financial services industry.

It refers to everything from cashless payments, to crowdfunding platforms, to robo-advisors, to virtual currencies.

Here at a major fintech conference in Amsterdam, hundreds of companies are trying to disrupt the banking and finance industries by changing the way we pay and borrow money. And investors are buying it.

Global investment in the fintech sector has added up to nearly $100 billion since 2010. In 2017 alone, fintech investment surged 18%.

Startups focusing on payment and lending technologies received the majority of those funds. It’s not just startups that are getting into fintech. Some of the world’s biggest companies from Apple to Alibaba are going big on it, too.

Just think of Apple Pay or Alipay. One reason for all of this investment?

Consumers are adopting fintech – fast. One out of every three people across 20 major economies report using at least two fintech services in the last six months China and India are leading the way with more than half of consumers using services like money transfers, financial planning, borrowing and insurance.

Financial technology has filled a void for people around the world who don’t have access to traditional banking services.

In fact, it’s estimated nearly two billion people worldwide are without bank accounts. Now, thanks to fintech, all you need is your phone to take out a loan or insurance.

Take Pakistan, which pioneered a mobile banking system called Eaisy-Paisa or Jazz Cash.

Pakistanis access their Eaisy-Paisa accounts directly on their mobile phones to transfer money or pay bills.

The rise of fintech has forced traditional lenders, insurers and asset managers to embrace new digital technologies. For example, wealth managers now have to compete with robo-advisors  which are automated financial planning services.

Think of peer-to-peer lending platforms, where individuals borrow and lend without going through a bank. Compared to traditional banks, these services might not be required to set aside as much money in case customers default on their loans. This can be risky for companies and consumers.

Data privacy is another major concern. As more financial services go digital, cyber attacks become a bigger risk. The challenges facing financial technology are likely to grow as more and more businesses go digital. But for many of the companies and consumers here – fintech is more than a buzzword.

The Case Lawyer is a leading FinTech law firm at the forefront of the financial technology revolution. Our specialist team of corporate and commercial solicitors already has extensive experience in this fast-growing area of the financial services sector.

We work closely with FinTech companies to help them negotiate the journey all the way from start-up through to eventual exit. We also work with the companies that serve the FinTech sector such as platform providers and advise on the regulatory implications of adopting specific disruptive technologies.

Our multidisciplinary legal services include:

Services We Provide

  • Preparation of legal documents i.e. contract drafting, legal opinions, review and analysis of documents etc.
  • Assistance and legal support during the negotiation process.
  • Educating on the applicable regulatory regime and legal obligations i.e. primary obligations as a regulated institution/obliged entity, AML/CTF regulations and guidelines, data protection, securities laws, consumer protection laws, etc.
  • Advising on rights and obligations in the event of regulatory investigations as well as actual or potential contractual and regulatory breaches.
  • General legal advice related to areas that we cover.
  • Intellectual property, patent strategy and prosecution, and licensing.
  • General corporate advice related to labor and employment, tax, privacy and cybersecurity, and global trade.
  • Legal and regulatory compliance.

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FinTech Contract Drafting

Drafting contracts for firms providing financial services is a discrete service that requires deep knowledge of the subject covered.

The Case Lawyer’s experts know how to properly structure the rights and obligations of parties in the establishment of business relations. Be it business to business (B2B) transaction, general terms of service with customers (B2C), or legal notices that outline obligations of FinTech business towards clientele, our law firm has all required knowledge to properly structure agreements and create a solid lawful framework governing your dealings.

Our experts are acquainted with the rules of card networks (e.g. Visa, Mastercard) and even know how to deal with smart legal contracts (contracts when a party(ies) perform its obligation with the help of distributed ledger and smart contract technology). We worked with various projects in the financial sector and can offer you a proficient FinTech legal support.

Our contract drafting expertise closely relates to our experience in commercial law, specifically contract law. When we draft contracts for our clients we ensure that they are enforceable and non-severable.

While for business contracts there is the principle of caveat emptor and generally most clauses and contracts are enforceable, B2C contracts require special attention and comprehensive knowledge of statutory and case law.

Data protection for FinTech

Data is essential to innovation and is specifically important for the financial sector. It underpins the very infrastructure and processes that allow FinTech to thrive. The relationship between financial services and data goes back centuries and traces the evolution from the date of the earliest surviving handwritten cheque in the UK in 1659 to the numerous digital methods available today. Good practice in data protection is vital to ensure public trust in, engagement with and support for innovative uses of data in the FinTech sector.

The Case Lawyer is well accustomed to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and its national implementation Personal Data Protection Act. We can provide your business with strategic FinTech legal support that will ascertain that you act within your legal obligations in terms of data protection.

Regulatory Obligations

The knowledge of the regulatory obligations of firms in the financial sector is the essence of FinTech business. Our FinTech legal services also include litigation and advice related to rules regulating FinTech companies.

The Case Lawyer is well-accustomed with the provision of legal support to the FinTech sector. We know in practice the twists and turns that must be taken into account by companies working in the financial sector.

Starting with the guidance that is issued at a supranational level and further down to the directions enshrined at the national level, we got you covered in all areas related to the regulatory obligations that financial institutions have.

Intellectual Property

IP rights are at the core of FinTech business and proper measures ensuring their protection are vital for a thriving business. However, protecting inventions can be difficult, due to restrictions on patents for mathematical methods and discoveries, and methods of doing business. Therefore, it is essential to consult with the experts to ensure that all of your legal rights are safeguarded to the fullest extent possible.

The Case Lawyer can advise you on how to safeguard your IP rights while preventing third parties from inventions being copied and ensuring that you do not give up the protection too soon. Furthermore, we may help you to safeguard your brand by registering your trademark with IPO, USPTO, EUIPO, WIPO or a national trademark office.

Banking Laws

FinTech companies provide certain services or all services that a regular bank provides. Usually, FinTech companies provide services better than a bank that cannot adopt technological development so quickly.

As FinTech companies provide services that banks provide, the are some statutory rules, and case law that applies to them. Rules that were associated only with banks (e.g., banks’ of duty of confidentiality, BCOBS, consumer protection of banking customers, etc.) apply to some FinTech companies without a banking license. Therefore, it is impossible to provide FinTech legal services without knowing banking law.

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