CAYMAN ISLANDS – EXEMPT COMPANIES
The Cayman Islands are a British Overseas Territory situated in the Caribbean sea. Due to their connection with Britain Cayman Island have political stability and as a result excellent legal , accounting and banking services. Cayman Islands employ the British legal system and is monitored by Crown representatives and elected members.There is no exchange control and no restriction on the movement of funds to or from the Islands.
The Cayman Islands have no double taxation treaties with any other part of the world but have undertaken to assist foreign governments by giving them information where a Cayman Island Company has been used or involved in activities which are mutually considered as criminal.
The Cayman Islands Exempted Company
A Cayman Island exempted company has the following characteristics:
There are no taxes in the Cayman Islands on income, capital gains, profits, dividends, investments or capital transfers. The company may apply for a twenty year guarantee against taxation from the Cayman Islands Government, which may be extended to thirty years on application.
Shares must be issued in registered form, although details of the shareholders are not maintained on public record. Bearer shares are only permitted when lodged with an Authorized Custodian within the Islands.
Details of the directors must be advised to the company registrar but this information is not publicly available. Directors can be foreign residents and do not have to be resident in the Cayman Islands. At least one director is required and corporate directors are permitted.
There is no requirement to fled accounts with the registrar. However, an annual return must be fled. The return takes the form of a simple declaration.
The usual incorporation time is in the order of 3 to 5 days. For more urgent incorporations there is an emergency procedure available an additional fee can be paid in order to incorporate within 24 hours. Our associated offices do keep a limited number of ready-made companies in stock.
Restrictions on Name and Activity
Generally, although not strictly necessary, names would end with one of the following words, or abbreviations : Limited, Corporation, Incorporated, Societe Anonyme or Sociedad Anonima.
The following words, and their associated activities, cannot be used without approval : Assurance, Bank, Building Society, Chamber of Commerce, Chartered, Cooperative, Empire, Imperial, Insurance, Municipal and Royal.
According to local law, the company needs to have a registered office address within the Cayman Islands. Our associated offices would generally provide this service and a local resident agent as part of our domiciliary services.
The Confidential Relationships (Preservation) Law makes it a criminal offense to leak confidential information or to attempt to obtain confidential information relating to a Cayman Island company. . However as with most jurisdictions, this confidentiality is being eroded by subsequent legislation such as the Proceeds of Crime Law (2008 Revision), Tax Information Exchange Agreements and other mutual assistance treaties whereby there will be disclosure of information in criminal offenses, including tax offenses.
The maximum authorized share capital which attracts the minimum capital duty is US$50,000.
International initiatives such as US FATCA, UK FATCA, Common Reporting Standards (CRS) and many others have greatly increased the ongoing costs of compliance.
Any offshore company which had UK based directors would be tax resident in the UK and subject to UK tax on its worldwide income. Failure by the directors to declare the liability of the offshore company to UK tax would be an offense under UK law with potentially very serious financial and criminal consequences. Most onshore countries have similar provisions within their tax legislation so it will rarely be advisable for onshore resident clients to act as the directors of an offshore company. To establish that the management and control of the company does take place offshore and the company is therefore tax resident offshore as well as incorporated there we can, and habitually do, provide directors. In most cases this service is essential if legitimate tax savings are to be made.
We can assist with the opening of bank accounts for the company in most places in the world and our fees for attending to the account opening procedures would be from US$1,000 plus the costs of preparing any additional notarized documentation which a particular bank may require.
Dedicated Telephone Lines
For those companies which are particularly active or wish to have a higher profile or more substance we can arrange the immediate allocation of a dedicated telephone line answered with the name of your company.