Applying for permanent residency

| 07/03/2016

I am thinking about applying for Cayman Islands permanent residency but I don’t know how to go about it and cannot afford a lawyer or immigration consultant. Can you help?

Auntie’s Answer: At this point, I am not sure that anybody can help. Since the amended immigration law was enacted 26 October 2013 (and then re-amended in January last year, with the government last autumn opening the door to possible further changes), no applicants have been granted permanent residency. While the government has laid out a path to being approved to stay in the Cayman Islands permanently, the changes so far do make the process more rigorous, and the road to PR seems even more fraught with symbolic potholes and confusing traffic signals.

As you mentioned, there are lawyers and consultants who would be happy to charge you to help with the application, but it is certainly possible to do it on your own, if you have the time and the patience. I will say, though, that you will probably need boatloads of both, plus things around the house that you won’t mind throwing across the room.

Unfortunately, there are not too many options for free help. The main place to look is the immigration department’s website, but navigating that site, though easier than it was a decade ago, can still test one’s patience and fortitude. Some sections may even test your belief that you are a native English speaker.

Now that you have been sufficiently warned, here is a link to the relevant section: Permanent Residence – Eligibility. And here is the most recent news update: Immigration report ‘soon come’

My only other advice would be to gather as much anecdotal evidence as possible from friends who have already submitted their applications for PR. Their experiences may provide the best insight and direction for you.

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