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Caymanian status eligibility for wife

| 08/04/2016 | 0 Comments

I am a Caymanian and married a foreign woman four years ago. She has permanent residency and after the seven years of marriage she will apply for Cayman status. Our problem is that I am looking to leave Cayman as it is just getting too expensive to live here, but I will return after I have saved some money. My question is: does she have to be resident in Cayman for the seven years or is it just married to a Caymanian for seven years? I have heard people say that status can be earlier too, but I can’t get anyone with any sense in immigration to answer my question after countless calls and emails.


Auntie’s answer: I am happy to report that I was able to get your question answered by an immigration official. Even better, the answer is clear, straightforward and will make your life – and your wife’s life – much easier.

In your case, there are two bits of information that are relevant and important. Firstly, since your wedding took place four years ago, after 1 January 2004, your wife will need to be married for seven years before applying for status.

And, the second point is that it is the length of time you are married, not where you reside, that determines the eligibility.

Below is the answer directly from the official at immigration and here is the Immigration Law for your reference. You need to look at Section 22(4) and (5) regarding the grant of the right to be Caymanian on the grounds of being the spouse of a Caymanian:

“Under Section 22(4) any person who has been married to a Caymanian…may apply to the Board for the grant of the right to be Caymanian.  When the marriage took place will determine whether the non-Caymanian spouse may apply for the right to be Caymanian after five years of marriage or after seven years of marriage.  Where the marriage took place prior to 1 January, 2004, the non-Caymanian spouse may apply for the right to be Caymanian after five years of marriage; where the marriage took place on or after 1 January, 2004, the non-Caymanian spouse may apply for the grant of Caymanian status after seven years (See section 22(4)(a)(i) & (ii)).”

The official also wanted to point out that there are other criteria in the law that could affect someone’s eligibility to apply for status as a spouse of a Caymanian, but added, “based on the information provided by the reader, as they were married four years ago (approx. 2012), they will have to be married for seven years before his spouse may apply for the right to be Caymanian”.

On the plus side, you are free to move anywhere in the world to work and save money without affecting your wife’s eligibility. Good luck with your international job hunt.

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Category: Ask Auntie, Immigration Questions

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