Michigan Cryptocurrency Laws

Relevant Statute

MONEY TRANSMISSION SERVICES ACT Act 250 of 2006

“Money” Definition

“Money” means a medium of exchange authorized or adopted by the United States or a foreign government as a part of its currency that is customarily used and accepted as a medium of exchange in the country of issuance. The term includes a monetary unit of account established by an intergovernmental organization or by agreement between 2 or more governments.

“Money Transmitter” Definition

(c) “Money transmission services” means selling or issuing payment instruments or stored value devices or receiving money or monetary value for transmission. The term does not include the provision solely of delivery, online, or telecommunications services or network access.
487.1003

Additional Definitions

(e) “Payment instrument” means any electronic or written check, draft, money order, travelers check, or other wire, electronic, or written instrument or order for the transmission or payment of money, sold or issued to 1 or more persons, whether or not the instrument is negotiable. The term includes any stored value device or facsimile. The term does not include any credit card voucher, letter of credit, or tangible object redeemable by the issuer in goods or services. (i) “Stored value device” means a card or other tangible object used for the transmission or payment of money that contains a microprocessor chip, magnetic stripe, or other means for the storage of information; that is prefunded; and the value of which is reduced after each use. The term does not include a tangible object the value of which is redeemable in the issuer’s goods and services.
487.1003

Exemptions

Sec. 4. This act does not apply to any of the following:
(a) The United States or a department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States.
(b) Money transmission services provided by the United States postal service or by a contractor on behalf of the United States postal service.
(c) A state, county, city, or any other governmental subdivision of a state.
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(d) A depository financial institution, office of an international banking corporation, or branch of a foreign bank; a bank holding company or subsidiary, as those terms are defined in section 2(a)(1) and 2(d) of the bank holding company act of 1956, 12 USC 1841; a bank service company organized under the bank service company act, 12 USC 1861 to 1867; a subsidiary or affiliate of a depository financial institution, or a subsidiary or affiliate of a holding company of a depository financial institution, if the depository financial institution maintains its main office or a branch office in this state; a credit union service organization, as that term is defined in section 102 of the credit union act, 2003 PA 215, MCL 490.102; or a corporation organized under the Edge act, 12 USC 611 to 633.
(e) Electronic funds transfer of governmental benefits for a federal, state, county, or governmental agency by a contractor on behalf of the United States or a department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States or a state or governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality of a state.
(f) A board of trade designated as a contract market under the commodity exchange act, 7 USC 1 to 27f, or a person that in the ordinary course of business provides clearance and settlement services for a board of trade, to the extent of its operation as or for that board.
(g) A registered futures commission merchant under the federal commodities laws, to the extent of its operation as a merchant.
(h) A person that provides clearance or settlement services under a registration as a clearing agency or an exemption from registration granted under the federal securities laws, to the extent of its operation as a provider under this subdivision.
(i) An operator of a payment system, to the extent that it provides processing, clearing, settlement, or other similar services between or among persons excluded by this section in connection with wire transfers, credit card transactions, debit card transactions, stored value transactions, automated clearinghouse transfers, or other similar funds transfers or transactions.
(j) A person registered as a securities broker-dealer under federal or state securities laws, to the extent of its operation as a registered broker-dealer
487.1004

Registration Fees

Base License Fee – $3,000
License Fee Per Location – $50 ($3,000 max)
Investigation Fee – $600

Bond and Insurance Requirements

(5) An applicant shall include with an application for a license under this act a surety bond that meets all of the following:
(a) Is issued by a bonding company or insurance company authorized to do business in this state and expires no earlier than the date the license expires.
(b) Is in a principal amount of at least $500,000.00 and not more than $1,500,000.00. The commissioner shall determine the principal amount of this bond based on the number of locations and authorized delegates of the applicant in this state.
(c) Is in a form satisfactory to the commissioner, is payable to the commissioner for the benefit of any individuals who are Michigan residents and who are creditors or claimants of the applicant and its authorized delegates through purchase of a payment instrument from the applicant or an authorized delegate located in this state, and secures the faithful performance of the obligations of the applicant and its authorized delegates with respect to the receipt of money in connection with the conduct of its money transmission services business.
(6) The aggregate liability of a surety under a bond issued for purposes of subsection
(5) shall not exceed the principal amount of the bond.
487.1013

Capital Requirements

Sec. 13. (1) At the time of filing an application for a license under this act, an applicant shall provide the commissioner with copies of the applicant’s financial statements for the most recent fiscal year and, if available, for the 2-year period preceding the submission of the application. The financial statements shall meet all of the following:
(a) If subdivision (b) does not apply, show that the applicant’s net worth exceeds $100,000.00.
(b) If the applicant intends to engage in providing money transmission services in this state at more than 1 location or through authorized delegates, show that the applicant has a net worth that equals or exceeds either the sum of $100,000.00 plus an additional $25,000.00 for each location or authorized delegate, as applicable, or $1,000,000.00, whichever is less.
(c) Are in the form prescribed by the commissioner, except that financial statements prepared by or reviewed by an independent certified public accountant may be in the form prescribed by that accountant.
(d) Are prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.
(2) A licensee shall at all times maintain a net worth that meets the amounts described in subsection (1) for its money transmission services business.
487.1013

Money Transmission License Required for Crypto Exchange?

No

State Comments or Statements

Michigan released consumer guidance which states that “State and federal regulators are evaluating and developing approaches to regulating virtual curencies and companies that deal in virtual currencies.”

https://www.michigan.gov/documents/difs/Consumer_Counselor-Virtual_Currency_462034_7.pdf

Statute definitions of money and payment instrument excludes virtual currencies.