[Update 1: The Bitcoin Cash Network has been upgraded. BitPay has resumed BCH payments on the BCHN chain for wallet users as of 2:20 pm ET on 10/17/2020.]
[Update 2: BitPay has resumed BCH payments on the BCHN chain for merchants as of 10/20/2020 on the BCHN chain.]
What is going on with Bitcoin Cash?
You may have heard that there is a divide within the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) community as to the future of BCH. A proposed modification of the Bitcoin Cash ABC protocol is expected to be implemented on November 15, 2020, which will most likely result in litigation hard fork.
A contentious hard fork affecting BCH could cause a split into two separate blockchains – or he may not, leaving only one viable blockchain in the future. None of us can say for sure how the split will resolve itself (although here is a resource which allows you to see which implementation miners are reporting support for.)
Just as a transit system would temporarily shut down to protect its commuters in the event of a major storm, we consider it our responsibility to protect BitPay customers who may be negatively affected.
What does this mean for BitPay merchants?
In order to restore safe and secure BCH payment processing and reduce the risk of wallet clients losing BCH funds due to replay attacks, we plan to temporarily suspend BCH transactions for any payment processing – starting November 13, 2020 at 1 p.m. ET – before the expected range. We will resume payment processing for BCH once a consensus has been reached on the network. We will continue to process BTC, ETH, XRP, USDC, GUSD, PAX and BUSD payments as usual.
How will merchant settlements and refunds be affected?
BCH payments and refunds will also be deactivated and will resume when payment processing is reactivated. If there is a pending settlement or refund, BitPay’s dedicated support team and account managers will be ready to resolve any issues that may arise on a case-by-case basis.
What should BitPay and Copay wallet users know?
We will also temporarily suspend BCH transactions. at 1 p.m. ET on November 13 for wallet users. Since BitPay and Copay wallets are true non-custodial wallets, you own your private keys. Your funds are safe and secure as long as they remain in your wallet. Once service is restored, you will be able to continue sending and receiving BCH on the channel we believe to be the most secure.
It should be noted If there are two viable BCH chains left beyond the expected range, it will be possible for wallet users to access coins from both chains at a later date with additional software. You have the option to import your private key into a wallet that supports any new chain, if you want to claim new coins created. BitPay does not currently plan to provide tools to access the coins of the minority chain.
Will this affect my ability to load my BitPay prepaid card or purchase gift cards with BCH?
BCH-dollar charges for your BitPay card and gift card purchases in BCH will be temporarily disabled. You will still be able to use BTC, ETH, XRP, USDC, GUSD, PAX, and BUSD during this time.
Your funds held in US dollars on the BitPay card are not threatened by this range. Your BitPay card will continue to work whenever you pay with merchants or receive money at Mastercard® compatible ATMs.
Do I have to do anything to prepare for the fork or are my funds at risk?
If you are using the BitPay wallet or other BCH compatible wallet, we strongly recommend that you do not send transactions during the fork duration. BCH transactions will be at increased risk of replay attacks and loss of funds. The BCH funds that you hold in your own wallet will not be threatened.
What comes after this fork?
BitPay will closely monitor network conditions until consensus is reached. We will reinstate BCH payments when we are satisfied that it is safe for you to transact, and we will notify you accordingly.