Pursuant to the provision of the Immigration Law (as
amended) it is possible to obtain a temporary work permit (a
"Temporary Permit") for up to six
months or a full work permit (a "Full
Permit") for one, two or even three years for a
non-Caymanian employee, which a Cayman company/employer may
wish to employ. Once a Cayman Islands legal entity has been
registered with the Registrar of Companies and has obtained all
the necessary licenses to carry on business in the Islands,
that entity may commence doing business in the Cayman Islands,
including the hiring of employees.
REQUIREMENT TO ADVERTISE
Before either a Temporary Permit or a Full Permit
application may be submitted for a non-Caymanian employee, an
advertisement for the vacant position must usually be placed
over a two week period in a local newspaper in an effort to
recruit a suitably qualified Caymanian or such other person who
may be legally resident in the Islands. Interviews will need to
be conducted of all applicants that apply for the position and
detailed notes taken of any questions asked by the prospective
employer and all answers provided by the applicants. An
explanation will need to be included in any permit application
as to why neither a Caymanian nor such other person legally
resident in the Islands was recruited for the position.
EXEMPTION FROM THE REQUIREMENT TO ADVERTISE
Where there are either no Caymanians or other persons who
are legally resident in the Islands who are qualified to fill
the vacant post, an application may be made to the Chief
Immigration Officer (the "CIO") in
the case of a Temporary Permit or the Work Permit Board (the
"WPB") in the case of a Full Permit,
for an exemption from the requirement to advertise the vacant
post. However, such an exemption is only granted where there
are clear grounds for doing so.
A case must be made for the waiver of the advertising
requirement based on the specialised qualifications, knowledge
and expertise of the proposed employee and his or her
suitability to the job description. If a permit is only needed
for a fixed length of time of, for example, six months or one
year, then an employer is usually able to obtain approval not
to advertise the vacant post due to the short time the
non-Caymanian will be required to live in the Islands.
Generally, the shorter the duration of the fixed term
employment contract, the more likely it is that the employer
will obtain the advertising waiver. However it is difficult to
get a waiver where the non-Caymanian employee does not have
specialised knowledge and experience, especially when this is
readily available in the Islands.
DOCUMENTATION IN SUPPORT OF PERMIT APPLICATIONS
Full details of the vacant post ie a job description and
details of the proposed employee's qualifications and
experience should be provided to the WPB or the CIO as the case
may be whenever an application for a permit is submitted.
The following documentation should also be filed with a
duly completed Application Form for either a Full Permit
or a Temporary Permit (in duplicate);
full face and profile photographs of the applicant;
applicant's completed medical questionnaire;
applicant's blood tests results;
Police Clearance Certificates for the applicant and the
copy of advertisements in the local newspaper;
current resume and professional qualifications of the
Marriage Certificate of the applicant and dependent
Birth Certificates of the applicant's dependent
It should be noted that a medical questionnaire is not
required for a Temporary Permit of three month's duration
or shorter. English language translations of the above
documents should also be included where appropriate.
TIME FRAME FOR APPROVAL OF PERMITS
It presently takes approximately three to four months to
have a Full Permit approved and approximately two to three
weeks to obtain approval of a Temporary Permit.
Sonia Starvis, Partner
David Whittome, Partner
Julie Melia, Partner
British Virgin Islands
Jack Husbands, Partner
Hugh O'Loughlin, Partner
Rod Palmer, Partner
The content of this article is intended to provide a
general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should
be sought about your specific circumstances.
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