September 9, 2005

The Work Permit Board advised in a memorandum released Friday 2nd September that it will be adhering strictly to the law on term limits for work permit holders, and urged employers to pay greater attention to appropriate geographic balance.

The Board expressed concern about insufficient documentation of applications. The Work Permit Board (one of 2 Boards in the Cayman Islands who monitor work permit applications) is concerned that since Hurricane Ivan the demographics of the expatriate workforce have changed significantly and recognizes the potentially negative effect that this could have on the small island community by allowing a disproportionate number of work permit holders from one geographical region.

Employers who are planning on sending foreign staff to the Cayman Islands must note there is a risk that an application may be refused if they are seen to be recruiting predominantly from one geographical region or country. Additionally the Board has commented on the inadequate information that is provided in the applications and requires that all prospective employers need more documentary evidence such as copies of signed contracts of service in order to approve the applications.

The Work Permit Board and Business Staffing Plan Board, are enforcing the term limits on work permits imposed by the Immigration Law, 2003. Clients are advised to speak to their immigration adviser with regard to term limits so that difficult situations can be avoided.