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Question: What is the biggest problem in conducting transactions through an escrow service?
Finding a trusted escrow agent - 10 (58.8%)
Resolving disputes - 3 (17.6%)
High costs of escrow services - 2 (11.8%)
No problems. Current escrow services work fine and they are useful - 1 (5.9%)
Don't see a need for a high-end escrow service - 1 (5.9%)
Total Voters: 17

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Author Topic: [POLL] Is there a demand for a high-end non-anonymous escrow service?  (Read 1114 times)
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November 28, 2011, 05:32:25 PM

Hello everyone,

I'm planning on starting a transparent and non-anonymous escrow and dispute resolution service. The parties to the escrow arrangement could still remain anonymous, but the agent would be publicly known. It would be beneficial to get some feedback from you all if you feel that there would exist a demand for this kind of service.

A more thorough description is quoted below from my post to the newbie thread:

Hello esteemed BitCoin community,

I've been keeping track of the development of the BitCoin phenomenon with it's up's and down's for quite some time already. I would call myself an outsider as I am not a professional in the arts of engineering/computer science, which seems to be a common denominator in many of you.

I've searched and browsed through these forums to find services in the legal/escrow/dispute resolution sphere and there seems to be a few interesting threads related to it.

Where my idea differs from the ones previously presented is the following:

Whereas the discussions in this forum have revolved around technical implementations or "online credibility" for arbitrators/escrows, I myself, as a practicing lawyer am coming from the world of commercial transactions and regulatory reality. My interest in the BitCoin system has always revolved around the interface between the virtual and the "real" - and that is why my idea is that for the escrow/arbitrator to be trusted - his/her identity must be known and he/she has to operate according to the ethical and regulatory standards of the real world. Meaning: his a** can be sued, if necessary.

So, my idea is to provide legal services as myself and not anonymously. That naturally does not mean that my clients need to disclose their identity. The challenge with that is naturally the regulatory regime currently in place within the EU regarding anti-money laundering procedures, which obligates the providers of legal services to know their customers in certain instances. But I believe this hurdle can be overcome.

For this reason I would appreciate if I could get whitelisted to present this idea to a larger audience to see their reactions and get a feel if there would be demand for this kind of service.

Feedback and ideas welcome:

Please let me know what you think and do elaborate more on your vote!
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December 06, 2011, 10:10:48 PM

I think there is a demand for these types of services. I know an escrow agent in CA that handles 'unusual' escrows.

For example, she took some chimps once and exchanged them to the buyer after collecting the funds. She is also licensed, bonded and insured for $10m. Basically, she has the clients draw up the escrow agreement and then she executes it exactly. I have used her before for some 'unusual' deals and she did a great job. Plus, her minimum fee is $500.

She is the only one of her type in that particular area of CA which has millions of people so I do think it is a rather niche business unlike real property conveyances, etc.

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December 06, 2011, 10:33:45 PM

Additional services are always welcomed.

 I, however, think you have a Catch 22 problem. VIP traders tend to know each other and trust each other, so there would be consequences if the deal was not upheld. Now, if you provided a form of insurance, they might be willing to pay your fees for that insurance. But finding an insurance underwriter for that type of deal, I think would be hard to do.

For the low end traders, it would be great for bringing them on board with confidence of not being scammed. However, you will not be able to charge a large fee to them which would hurt your side.

I think it was Stone that said: "The money is in the meter pull." I think I'm paraphrasing as I did not look it up. But what he was getting at is that it is better to make a $1 from 100 people, than $100 from 1.

The problem with that aspect of doing your type of business is your transparency business model. Once the two parties know each other and the trade goes through without a hitch, they won't need you. If you keep them anonymous to each other, then you would be the counter-party and they would need an escrow with you.

Escrow does have a place however for certain deals, But for most people, they will just use an exchange that they trust and pay the 1% or  less fee.

I would like to try and provide a solution also. IMO, if from some miracle, PayPal allowed you to act as an escrow service to protect them from the chargebacks... Let me know... I'll invest.

Good Luck,

Corporations have been enthroned, An era of corruption in high places will follow and the money power will endeavor to prolong its reign by working on the prejudices of the people until wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. ~Abe Lincoln 1ApJdWUdSWYw8n8HEATYhHXA9EYoRTy7c4
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December 07, 2011, 12:36:51 PM

Wholesale voip services need escrows everyday (see
Though a couple of them had run with customers' money, if you find a way that money is safe, you will get many customers.
Maybe multi-signed transactions is the way to go.

If you don't own the private keys, you don't own the coins.
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December 07, 2011, 12:45:29 PM

i wonder who chose the 'high cost' option in the poll... is 1% too much?
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December 07, 2011, 02:52:20 PM

What does "high-end" mean? What kind of deals needing escrow are we talking about?

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