California Passes Law Legalizing Alternative Currencies Like Bitcoin, Dogecoin

While the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Internal Revenue Service are still giving Bitcoin and other digital currencies like Dogecoin some extreme side eye, the state of California is throwing its arms wide open with a newly signed law that makes those and other alternative forms of payment legal in the state.

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill called AB 129 into law over the weekend, which legalizes the use of Bitcoin, Dogecoin and their pals, reports CNET.

The bill repeals Section 107 of California’s Corporations Code, which prohibited companies or individuals from issuing money other than U.S. dollars.

The law ensures that digital currencies, coupons and loyalty points are all legal forms of payment to buy goods and services in the state.

The bill’s author previously said that the law is a sign of the times.

“In an era of evolving payment methods, from Amazon Coins to Starbucks Stars, it is impractical to ignore the growing use of cash alternatives,” Assemblyman Roger Dickinson said. “This bill is intended to fine-tune current law to address Californians’ payment habits in the mobile and digital fields.”

The IRS currently classifies Bitcoin and its ilk as property for tax purposes, which can make it difficult for people trying to actually buy stuff with it. Those who use it have to figure out how much the bitcoin was worth when they got it, and then how much gain they’d made from it and eventually pay tax on it.

California governor signs bill legalizing Bitcoin, other digital currencies [CNET]