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Cayman Islands Immigration Guide

Once you have decided to move to Grand Cayman, it is important to understand the Cayman Islands immigration process. Our real estate specialists can make introductions to immigration specialists, who can help make the process a smooth one.

There are two options available to gain residency in the Cayman Islands:

  • An immigration work permit
  • An immigration permanent residency certificate

Cayman Islands Immigration Work Permits

The Cayman Islands Immigration Department issues temporary and full-time work permits.

Temporary work permits are typically three or six months in length.  Full-time work permits are typically issued for one- to three-year periods. The maximum time that an individual can reside in the Cayman Islands on a work permit is nine years. Once an employee reaches nine years, they can either apply for permanent residency or get “rolled over.” Rollover requires the individual to leave the country for a period of 12 months.  At the end of the one-year period, they can apply for a new job in the Cayman Islands. 

The employer hiring an employee on a work permit must submit the application to the Immigration Board and pay for the work permit.

The prospective employee will need to provide official documentation to demonstrate they possess the relevant skills, education and experience required for the position, a criminal record check, and their passport. They will also need have a medical/physical completed. 

Cayman Islands Residency Certificate

There are four types of residency certificates available in the Cayman Islands:

  1. Permanent Residency
  2. Certificate of Permanent Residency for Persons of Independent Means
  3. Residency Certificate (Substantial Business Presence)
  4. Certificate of Direct Investment

Each option requires a significant financial investment in the Cayman Islands. 

Anyone dreaming of making the Cayman Islands home indefinitely and with the right to work must have the means to purchase developed real estate upwards of US$2.4 million. This coveted permanent residency certificate comes with an option to be naturalised as a British Overseas Territories Citizen after five years. Other criteria such as payment of a one-time $100,000 fee and possession of a clean criminal record (which applies to all types of residency applications and applications for spouses and dependents) must be met. More information about this enticing option can be found here.

Persons of independent means wishing to learn more about properties for sale as part of the process of establishing residency in this beautiful country may contact the Provenance Properties sales team.

More information about residency options can be found in these detailed guides from these Camana Bay-based law firms:

For more information on the certificates read about Persons of Independent Needs and Investors on the Immigration Cayman Islands website here: http://www.immigration.gov.ky/portal/page/portal/immhome/livinghere/independentmeans

Cayman Immigration Process

No matter which option you intend to pursue to acquire residency, it is important to engage the services of a qualified and experienced Cayman Islands immigration specialist.  The process generally takes a minimum of three months. 

Make sure you have your documentation in order before you start the process.  Original copies of birth certificates, marriage certificates, university diplomas will be needed.  For those applying for a Persons of Independent Means residency, bank records and bank and professional references should also be in order.