This post has been authored by Arnav Maru, currently in his 4th year at Maharashtra National Law University (MNLU), Mumbai.
In a previous post, the concept of smart contracts as used in the legal field was explained comprehensively. Smart contracts are pieces of software that are formed when certain operational terms of a contract are written in the form of electronically executable codes. They were originally envisaged by Nick Szabo and theorized in a paper titled ‘Smart Contracts: Building Blocks for Digital Markets’. He used a rudimentary example of a vending machine to explain the concept. A consumer inserts cash into the machine and enters his preference. The machine then automates the execution of the contract and the goods are delivered to the consumer. The introduction of Blockchain technology has added another dimension to this concept and has exponentially increased its application. Self-executing contracts, based on the Blockchain are a reality now, and have found applications in a myriad of fields. An increasing popularity of the Blockhain and its uses has necessitated an overview of the progress made on this front, both, in terms of legal developments as well as feasibility of actual use.