Fees deny 20-year resident Caymanian status

Nearly $50,000 in purported outstanding immigration-related fees have so far prevented a Cayman resident from obtaining the right to be Caymanian under the Cayman Islands Immigration Law, according to court records made public last week.

Those fees are excessive and not charged in relation to the status applicant’s current job in the islands, a judicial review application filed on behalf of Terrance William Delaney on Dec. 11 alleges.

“The Department of Immigration [has] refused to recalculate the fees due … by [Mr. Delaney] despite the fact that it has been accepted by a letter from the Department of Immigration … that as a substance abuse counsellor, [Mr. Delaney] is not a medical doctor,” the judicial review filing states.

Permanent residence fees are generally charged according to the status holder’s occupation, with higher-paying occupations usually drawing higher annual fees.

The judicial review application states that an error by the Immigration Department between 1998 and 2005, while Mr. Delaney was a work permit holder in the islands, put the substance abuse counselor in the same annual fee category as a chartered accountant, banker or doctor. Those fees can vary between $10,000 and $25,000 per year.

As of June 2016, Mr. Delaney will have lived in the Cayman Islands for 20 years, according to court records. He is a British Overseas Territories citizen, a status granted to him in December 2006 – nine years ago.

To date, he has been unable to obtain Caymanian status, the court records allege, although he applied for status in April 2012. His permanent resident status was granted in 2005.

“After almost a decade of attempting to resolve these issues, [Mr. Delaney] has suffered substantial losses and damage,” the judicial review application states.

“The only reason why the Caymanian Status and Permanent Residency Board has deferred [Mr. Delaney’s] application for more than three years is due to the fact that it is the board’s policy not to deal with such applications if they are advised by the chief immigration officer that fees are outstanding to the department,” the application further reveals.

Suspended Chief Immigration Officer Linda Evans said as early as 2010 that the Immigration Department was owed millions of dollars from permanent residence holders who had not paid annual fees due to government for their residency status.

A move in the current immigration application process to collect residency fees “up front,” prior to an application being considered, is a result of difficulties in collecting the fees in the past.

Unlike annual work permit fees, which are paid by the employer, fees for permanent residence can be paid by either the employee, the employer or a combination of both. However, it is ultimately the permanent residence status holder’s responsibility to pay the fees.

Responding to Mr. Delaney’s application in June 2014, the Caymanian Status and Permanent Residency Board deferred his application “for further consideration.”

A year later, in May 2015, fees alleged to be outstanding by Mr. Delaney in relation to his permanent resident status totaled $48,850.

In October 2015, the acting chief immigration officer referred the issue to the Immigration Department’s enforcement section for collection, according to the judicial review application.

The judicial review application seeks court orders directing the chief immigration officer to reduce the fees in line with Mr. Delaney’s current job.

“The chief immigration officer’s decision to refer the matter to enforcement, given the overwhelming evidence of the correct fees due is … unreasonable and contrary to the rules of natural justice,” the judicial review application states.

In order for the judicial review application to be heard, a court must first agree to accept the application. Then the matter is typically heard before the Grand Court as a civil court proceeding.

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15 COMMENTS

  1. I wonder why a professional is been charged such high fees, and after a professional pay for work permit for so many years, and put in those years of service to the Cayman Islands, and is contributing to the economy, still have to pay such high price for Cayman Status. This sounds like a money racket instead of a Cayman Status. I think that something needs to be done with this Immigration law.

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  2. @Ron, If it looks like a Duck and Quacks like duck it’s most likely a Duck. If it look like a Racket and sounds like a Racket it’s a Racket, you hit the nail on the head.

    If you ask me it’s one of the oldest scams in the book, dangling a prize in front of you that they never really intend to give you. Like a horse chasing a carrot, accept this one will milk you dry of you funds and then say there’s nothing else we can do for you, which actually means there’s nothing you can do for us.

    I said it before and I’ll say it again, unless you’re rich with a lot on money to throw around and Caymanian Status will save you millions in taxes from other jurisdictions there’s really no benefit to perusing Caymanian Status and probably not a chance in hell of actually getting it.

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  3. I wonder if Immigration is owed any money on work permits fees ? I think I can answer that question NO. Why are they owed so much money on Status only ? I don’t understand why they can”t go and collect this money for status.

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  4. @Rod Bodden, Got you on that, and it’s all true. But that still doesn’t explain what the benefit would for the average Joe to seek Caymanian Status. Especially when it’s more likely than not that it will be denied. And even if it is approved and you’re granted status, do you really have the same rights and respect of your fellow Caymanians and would you really be viewed as equal ?

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  5. Entitlement, you call it, well So many people today in this world suffer because what they had was taken from them by people who feel they are entitle to rob them of their natural wealth by pushing the real citizens to the side and these nice people want to enrich themselves at the expense of others. History is filled with what the human race will do to each other with no care in the world of the consequences that befall the ones who have been stripped of their natural wealth. Pay to play i have learn this being an American and it is a good lesson to always remember. There is nothing for free.

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  6. @Michael Davis, That is what you hear the Caymanians talking about every week of the year, the attempts of defrauding them but they not as fool as you think. Ya have fa pay ya if ya wanna play ya. Why you think the standard of living so good ya. One Love me brother. Some just want to defraud the system alittle to much and feel that them fu fool Caymanian Government shouldn’t get paid there fee.

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  7. @Mike Carp, I have to pay a lot, every day i have to hear how bad my home is by a endless amount of bullies fighting to have there way with my country and as it slowly is changed to replicate their countries it is becoming less of mine. You try living with that year in and year out. Where you can only read or hear negative connotations of who you are culturally constantly. I am a Caymanian and there is nothing i can or want to change about that. I am thankful for my forefathers and mothers that they have made a place in the sun as sweet as Cayman where i don’t have to travel the world in search a space to make a living. Thanks to my people call Caymanians that you find in the Cayman islands i can make a living here. Thank you GOD. Thank you for making me a Caymanian who will share his home with all who want to come to our shores.

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  8. @ rod bodden
    Make the rules and stick to it. Make it as draconian as you wish, but make it simple and clear. Either grant PR or not, just don’t put people’s lives on hold.
    I am actually on your side.

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  9. @Rod, OK so let me make sure I got this right, If I want to spend time in Cayman I should pursue Caymanian Status and spend all my money chasing something that I will never get and even if I do the best I can hope for is an upgrade from driftwood to a being called a Paper Caymanian which is still looked down upon in the Caymanian community. You say that people think Caymanians are fools by not pursuing status, on the other hand it seems to me that those who spend up all their hard earned cash chasing a status that the vast majority of Caymanians including those in the LA do not want them to have are actually these fools.

    Sorry, still nothing here convinces me that there would be any benefit to pursuing Caymanian status. Maybe if I could actually become a part of the community and be respected as an equal I’d consider it. However I highly doubt anyone here would say that’s a possibility are that they would actaully like to see someone like me obtain Caymanian Status if I chose to pursue it..

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  10. @Rod & Michael
    I am lost in this discussion.
    ..Caymanians are fools by not pursuing status… Why Caymaninas need status?
    They are already Caymanians.
    I am not sure I understand what exactly Rod is talking about.
    I agree with Michael that there are no benefits but headache in pursuing "statuses".

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  11. The whole point is PAY your fee if you want to stay and just follow the rules or pay someone to figure it out for you. But we know there is always people who want it all for free and the days of getting it all free in Cayman are coming to an end. To many dead beats in Cayman now.

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  12. What I cannot understand is why? is it that only in Cayman this is happening. I have lived in many countries, been reading news papers from many places, in the world, including UK, USA, Jamaica, Honduras, Cuba, Eastern Caribbean and a few others, but I have never read in any where people go to these countries work, and when it is time to leave or if they are given a special right to remain, they turn round and fight the Immigration Department when they are told "We have rules and fees to pay that YOU must abide by". I always wondered about this, and why it is only happening in Cayman Islands. Are we going to have to go through this problem with every one who seek a job here?
    I truly believe that there are good people who come here with good intentions wanting to work and make Cayman their home, but like Rod Bodden say; we are getting too many "Dead Beats" in Cayman now. I also believe the Immigration is aware of those persons; and another thing, some people need to stop fanning the "Driftwood fire" It is only causing coals to re-light. Other countries may not openly call us drift wood when we go there, but that does not mean it is not on their minds.

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Comments are closed.