September 27, 2021

Financial advisors flock to Cayman Islands after visa concessions

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New visa concessions which came into law in September last year have resulted in a rush by financial advisers to take up residence in the Caymans.

Up to 1,000 more FAs have arrived in the Caymans than arrived during the same period last year, due to new visa offerings guaranteeing 10-year work permits for managers and executives working in the reinsurance sector. In addition, certain categories of administrative staff are being granted free work permits valid for five years.

Substantial investments in residential real estate are now being rewarded by permanent residence permits including the right to work. Unsurprisingly, the all-time low of last year’s immigration figures is now just a bitter memory.

The increase in migration is in spite of increased fees being levied by the government on work permits, which replaced the controversial tax on non-resident workers’ salaries. Executives must now pay KYD 30,375, an increase from KYD 20.500, and key non-executive workers are faced with rises from KYD 15,500 to KYD 20,925.

Across the board, increases in the fees range from 25 per cent to 33 per cent, although for head-hunted FAs it’s likely their employer will pick up the bill. According to the Cayman Islands’ immigration department, at present there are 4,719 FAs employed in the country, with 1,055 working in senior management positions.

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