There are so many reasons to relocate to the Cayman Islands. Perhaps you're seeking world-class service providers, need to be in an international finance centre, or just want to strike that work-life balance. Whatever the pull, Cayman's approach to supporting and growing new and existing businesses is second to none.
Here are just some of the reasons you'll love doing business in Cayman:
Work with a lawyer
The requirements for each new business are different. But many laws and regulations address Trade and Business Licences, Local Companies Law Licences, Business Staffing Plans; Work Permits, Residency Certificates, Labour; Pensions; Economic Substance, and Beneficial Ownership.
It's always best to ensure due process is followed by consulting a Cayman Islands-based lawyer when setting up a business here.
Incorporation and licensing
When incorporating and registering companies in the Cayman Islands, a distinction is made between resident companies that carry on business within the Islands (often referred to as "Local Companies") and exempted companies, which mainly do business outside the jurisdiction.
Subject to a few exceptions, a Trade & Business Licence (T&B Licence) is enough to get a local business up and running. Where there is foreign ownership or control, the provisions of The Local Companies Law (LCCL) may be applicable unless at least 60% of the shares are owned by Caymanians, and at least 60% of the directors are Caymanian. If not, Local Companies must also apply for and obtain an LCCL Licence.
Depending on the type of business, applicants may need to submit various licence and registration applications to the relevant boards in healthcare, tourism, music and dancing, and liquor.
What are the licensing requirements for Cayman real estate owners?
Under the Trade & Business Licencing Directions, you won't need a T&B licence to rent out fewer than two properties. This includes beneficial ownership but does not include the house you live in.
Regardless of status or citizenship, everyone exceeding the two property limit will need a T&B Licence. And non-Caymanian owners (or beneficial owners) exceeding the limit will also need an LCCL Licence, whether they manage their properties or not.
Requirements for incorporating and licensing a company
You'll need to submit your T&B and LCCL licence requests to the Trade & Business Licensing Board. Be sure to include all the various forms and due diligence documentation for your company, directors and shareholders. Documents will differ depending on your immigration status and existing connection to the Islands. It’s worth getting a local lawyer to help you navigate this.
Applying for an LCCL Licence is a bit more complex. The LCCL is after a tailored approach that the board must consider when deciding on your application. All approvals of LCCL Licences are at the board's discretion.
For more information on incorporating, licencing, and registering a company in the Cayman Islands, you can contact Daniel Altneu.
Registering a business
Setting up a banking and securities account
By Dan L. Peterson
Senior Advisor & Portfolio Manager | Private Wealth Management & Investment Advice CIBC FirstCaribbean
Banks that operate in the Cayman Islands must comply with due diligence and anti-money laundering (AML) regulations governed under Cayman Islands law.
When opening an account, you'll be expected to provide full details on the nature of your business - including anticipated money in and money out, who these payments will be made to and received from, and what these payments will represent. This information is usually provided with the paperwork when you open a bank account.
You'll need to support your anticipated transactions and expected activity volumes with brochures, financial statements, company structure charts, business plans, contracts, agreements, and invoices.
When establishing a banking and securities account for your corporate entity in the Cayman Islands, you'll need several forms of original, certified documentation:
Any directors or shareholders with a stake of 10% or more will need to provide original certified copies of the above company documentation. You'll need to share original certified copies of personal documentation for a minimum of two directors and all voting and management shareholders with holdings of 10% or more.
Anyone certifying address and identification documents outside of the Cayman Islands must also complete an Identity Verification Form.
Suitable Certifiers: Notary Public; Member of Judiciary; Foreign Embassy Consular; Senior Civil Servant; Lawyer; Banker; Accountant and authorised signatory of CIMA licenced service provider.
For further information, please contact: