Bankruptcy trustee guide

Coinbase has a team set up to provide support to Trustees appointed in cases pending in the United States Bankruptcy Court and abroad. Our team strives to be a resource for Trustees, so please always feel free to ask questions or let us know how we can support your needs.

It is our experience that Bankruptcy Trustees may require a response from Coinbase or assistance with the following:

  • Freeze/suspend a debtor's Coinbase account such that assets may not be transferred from their current location

  • Provide account information sufficient to show current cryptocurrency account balances and/or transaction histories

  • Create a Trustee Coinbase account in order to:

    • Transfer debtor's digital assets (currently held on Coinbase, another cryptocurrency exchange, or external hardware wallet) to an account controlled by the Trustee

    • Convert cryptocurrency to fiat currency for deposit into a Trustee's bank account, and/or

    • Transfer digital assets from the newly created Trustee Coinbase account to a wallet controlled by a judgment creditor

In addition to supporting Trustees in bankruptcy-related matters, Coinbase has and continues to provide crypto custodial and exchange services and crypto educational resources to a number of organizations, including:

  • International, Federal, State, and Local law enforcement agencies

  • Securities and Exchange Commission

  • Commodity Futures Trading Commission

  • State Attorneys General

  • Internal Revenue Service

  • State Comptroller / Controller Offices

The following pages contain information on (1) how to serve and communicate with Coinbase and (2) what information to provide such that Coinbase can help you execute your duties as a Bankruptcy Trustee.

Serving and Communicating with Coinbase

  • Registered Agent for Service of Process (location information available here)

    • Serving our registered agent assists us in managing our inbound data request stream and setting up your matter in our system

    • If possible, please provide a brief cover letter and attach any documents (Rule 2004 orders, subpoenas, asset-freeze requests, etc.) and serve the letter with attachments on our registered agent

    • Once a matter is open, we will generally accept subsequent materials and correspondence related to that matter directly by email

    • If time is of the essence, you may concurrently email us (see below) documents you formally serve on our registered agent. While formal service will constitute the "start date" for a new matter, we can sometimes begin looking into your matter given information provided in an email courtesy copy.

  • Email

    • For general inquiries or information, or for communications after Coinbase has been formally served, you can reach us directly by emailing

    • Including "Bankruptcy Matter - In re: [debtor name], USBC, [District info], Case No. [___]" in the subject line will assist us in processing your request

  • Phone

    • If you need to speak with someone from our team, please email us and we will work with you to coordinate a call

Information to Provide Coinbase Regarding Your Matter

In order to process your request, Coinbase will need certain information to verify your identity, locate the appropriate Coinbase customer(s), and understand what types of data may be relevant to your request. Below are requirements for Coinbase to process your request. Without the information listed below, Coinbase may not be able to initiate a search of its customer records.

General Information Regarding Court, Debtor, and Trustee

  • Court and case information (Jurisdiction, Case Name, Case No.)

  • Trustee information

    • Full name

    • Email address

    • Business address

    • Phone number

  • Official Form 309A/I (likely contains most of the information needed)

  • Copy of document appointing Trustee, or minute order re same. If you are not a Chapter 7 or 13 Trustee, provide a copy of the relevant document or docket entry.

Information Regarding Coinbase Customer or Cryptocurrency Transactions

Coinbase has the ability to search for customer accounts using various data points. To expedite this process, please provide as much of the following information as possible.

Searching for Coinbase Customers

  • Mandatory Information: if you are requesting that we identify a Coinbase account holder, we must have the following information before we can begin a search of our customer records:

    • Full legal name and all known aliases

    • Date of birth

  • All known email addresses: each Coinbase account must be linked to a unique email address. This is therefore the best single piece of corroborating information for us to use to identify a Coinbase customer.

  • Additional information

    • Phone number(s)

    • Residential address(es)

    • Last 4 of SSN

Searching for Wallet or Transaction Information

  • If you are looking for information regarding a specific digital wallet or cryptocurrency transaction, Coinbase requires that you provide as much of the following information as possible:

    • Transaction reference code(s) or hash(es)

    • Cryptocurrency wallet address(es) or hash(es)

    • Transaction date(s), type of cryptocurrency, and exact amounts