Your cash may soon be unwelcomed by some Florida retailers

Older and lower-income Americans are four times more likely to make all, or almost all, of their purchases with cash.  But at least for now, those consumers may face a growing number of merchants who are unwilling to accept their money. 

After being ignored for months in both chambers of the Legislature, a measure that would have prohibited brick-and-mortar businesses in Florida from refusing cash payments has been declared dead.  

At issue are findings that the share of “cashless businesses” more than doubled in the United States during the first year of the pandemic.

The Legislature did, however, pass a bill that makes it easier for individuals to trade in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Florida.  A 2019 court ruling required individuals who own cryptocurrencies to hold a license to sell them.  Although you may know people who are not abiding by the letter of that ruling, now it looks like they won’t have to.

  • What the legislation does: The bill clarifies that only intermediaries, such as a platform that enables cryptocurrency transactions, require a money transmitter license. The change would make clear that individuals seeking to sell cryptocurrency are not subject to licensure requirements
  • Where the legislation stands: The bill passed the House unanimously Monday morning and got through the Senate with only one dissenting vote in the evening.
  • What regulators are saying: The state’s Office of Financial Regulation supports the measure. The office has received more than 70 comments on how the industry should be regulated.