Moving you, your family and your business to Cayman – part 2

October 2, 2015

In the previous post on this subject I went through the preliminary steps of getting incorporated and establishing a business presence on Grand Cayman.  Once you have your business you can offer yourself a job.

As a director of your own business you have to write yourself a formal job offer and go through the work visa process. This can seem overwhelming, and involves a more complex process than both of the work visas our family have traveled under before. But all it takes is patience and a fondness for using UPS to send documents to the island.

You have to make personal statements, take a medical, provide a criminal background check provide notarized copies of many things, set up your health and legally mandated company pension scheme and prove you have a place to live – but the small outlay and inconvenience is worth it. If you use Cayman enterprise city they will give you a good written guide and they have people who will help you through the process. It is advertised that this can be done in a few weeks – it is safer to leave yourself 2-3 months. The time lag of sending documents back and forth, to and from the island and tricky compliance issues can catch you out if you don’t leave yourself enough time margin.

Medical – good family medical and dental cover will cost between $1200 to $1600 per month and the CEC gets a group rate through one of the largest insurers on the island who provide cover under the Aetna PPO which covers treatment on the island in the US.

Pension – is is the law that after 9 months working on the island you pay 3% and your employer pays 3% of your wage (up to a wage level of $60,0000) into a pension scheme. They are quite flexible with the pension funds and if you leave the island to live elsewhere you can transfer the funds off the island.

Accommodation – For first timers it is recommended to rent for the first year to get a feel for the different areas of the island and where you want to live for the long term. The rents run from low to high (I have seen places offered for $12,000 per month) but rents are generally high because you are competing with the holiday short term rental market and that is a lucrative option for local landlords. Property is reasonably priced to purchase and if you are willing to settle for something away from the beach the property prices are very reasonable. Realtors will help you find rental properties, we used Krista at Williams2 and she was very helpful even though we did not rent any of the properties she showed us. Most rental properties are posted on ecaytrade which is the Cayman ‘Ebay’ – you can also find cars, furniture, scuba and other sports equipment on ecaytrade as well.

For getting things done on the island we have found that email is not the best way to get a response, picking up the phone and talking to people is good. While setting up accommodation, pensions and schooling we found that making a trip or two to the island really helps move things along and everyone responds with excellent service when you are dealing with them face to face. It also gives you a chance to explore the island a little more and enjoy the weather and the ocean – always time well spent.

In the next post (and hopefully the final one on this subject) I will cover schools, cars, pets, bank accounts, settling in, iguanas, land crabs and anything else I have forgotten.

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