Technological innovation is quickly developing and creating opportunities and challenges in law, from research driven by artificial intelligence to providing legal counsel for new technological advancements. One of the newest opportunities in the legal sphere is blockchain. Villanova Law provided David Pejovic ’21 an opportunity to prepare for the future with his summer 2019 externship, which he spent with Bull Blockchain Law, LLC, a Philadelphia-based firm that specializes in cryptocurrency and related securitized digital assets.
Blockchain is based on ledger technology, which uses secure cryptographic functions to store and distribute records. It is the science behind Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, and the legal field is utilizing this new technology for everyday tasks, such as email encryption and contract management.
Not only does blockchain provide a new way to help lawyers operate, but it also provides a new niche legal specialization. During his externship, Pejovic conducted legal research on complex corporate structuring for both domestic and international FinTech entities, including studying publications from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to find guidance from past issues that could be applied to current clients’ needs.
“There’s no wide sweeping blockchain law yet, it’s brand new territory. You’re working with guidance or commentaries made by commissioners, or state legislation efforts which are far and few between, and going off those, while trying to adapt it to this new technology,” said Pejovic. He credited his undergrad experience in investment banking blockchain projects, combined with his current legal studies at Villanova Law, with helping him advise in this new frontier.
Many of the clients Pejovic worked with were international companies looking to move into U.S. operations. He recalled his “a-ha” moment, when he found a solution for a European-based client who was looking to move to the U.S. He discovered a way to structure the client’s corporation, while also reducing administrative costs and maintaining legal liability, in a way that perfectly fit the company’s business model. “It was a great feeling to see all of my hard work pay off and be able to help the client so seamlessly.”