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Registry enforces beneficial ownership regime with fines

As of 1 Feb. 2021, the Registrar of Companies had levied 19 administrative fines of $5,000 each against companies for noncompliance with beneficial ownership requirements.

Ombudsman orders registrar to stop collecting personal information

The ombudsman has ordered the Registrar of Companies to stop collecting personal data from company shareholders who are not beneficial owners under the beneficial ownership provisions of the company registration process.

Orders in Council coming for beneficial ownership registries

The United Kingdom government has said it will issue Orders in Council at the end of the year for all British Overseas Territories to...

Out in the Open

Cayman Finance supports government’s intention to introduce a public register of beneficial ownership, when such registers become the norm under international standards.

Cayman commits to public beneficial ownership register

The Cayman Islands will make the true owners of companies incorporated in the islands public as soon as European Union countries establish their own public registers. Corresponding legislation is expected to be introduced in 2022.

Saunders raises concerns about Constitution changes

MLA Chris Saunders says he’s concerned that some of his fellow members are making it too easy to make changes to the Cayman Islands Constitution.

Leaders unite against ‘modern colonialism’

Britain’s Overseas Territories say they will “stand together” to defend their right to self-government amid increasing concerns over “constitutional overreach” from the UK.

Crown dependencies to introduce public ownership registers

The British Crown Dependencies Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man announced on Wednesday they would make information on the true owners of companies in their jurisdictions more transparent.

EDITORIAL – Improving dialogue between the UK and Overseas Territories

Premier Alden McLaughlin struck the right tone in his recent statement on the United Kingdom’s governance of its overseas territories, demonstrating both fortitude and diplomacy as he addressed conflicts on a number of issues that are exceptionally sensitive politically in the Cayman Islands.

EDITORIAL – Public registers: A brief respite in an ongoing war

This week brought a welcome respite from some British lawmakers’ unrelenting attack on Cayman and other offshore financial centers. But make no mistake, this is only a lull in the storm.

UK government pulls Brexit bill debate over beneficial ownership

The United Kingdom government pulled a parliamentary debate on a piece of financial services legislation on Monday after Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man warned against an amendment to the bill that would force the introduction of public beneficial ownership registries in the Crown dependencies.

EU and UK pile pressure on financial services industry

The year 2018 came to a close just like the previous year ended: with Cayman attempting to stave off a blacklisting by the European Union.

A look back at the year that was

The year 2018 was an eventful one for the Cayman Islands.

FCO: Beneficial ownership register to be made public by 2023

The U.K. has indicated that it will issue an order in council instructing British Overseas Territories to establish fully operational public registers of beneficial ownership by 2023, if they have not done so by the end of 2020.

Cayman, UK address differences at Foreign Affairs Select Committee

Cayman’s representative in London, Eric Bush, faced a grilling from British MPs Tuesday and deflected questions on the controversial issues of beneficial ownership and same-sex marriage.

Beneficial ownership: Privacy rights most likely counter to UK order in council

Challenging the section of the U.K. Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act that threatens to establish public beneficial ownership registers in the overseas territories – if necessary through an order in council – would face major obstacles, according to Sir Jeffrey Jowell, QC, the lawyer who is working with the Cayman Islands government on its response to the action.

EDITORIAL – To UK lawmakers: Come back soon – and often!

Like Lord Tariq Ahmad, a steady ally who most recently visited in June to discuss public registries and hurricane preparedness, these four elected members appeared eager to understand the U.K.’s relationships – and its responsibilities – to its territories.

US bill would establish beneficial ownership registry

The United States could soon have a central registry containing the beneficial ownership information of U.S.-registered companies. Right now, companies in the U.S. are formed at the state level.

Discontent grows in overseas territories over British rule

Voices of discontent over British rule are growing louder across the U.K.’s overseas territories in the wake of the controversial decision to mandate public beneficial ownership registries.

Business owners have until end of June to file beneficial ownership details

Local business owners, who do not use registered office providers, will need to file their beneficial ownership information with General Registry by Saturday, June 30.
An aerial view of the business area of downtown George Town, Grand Cayman

EDITORIAL – Offshore finance: Its crucial role in global commerce

Telling the true story of offshore financial centers and our modern economy is one critical component of our challenge going forward. It is a reminder not only of what we are fighting against – but what we are fighting for.

Mitchell: Offshore center clampdowns are attacks on globalization

Since I consider myself the world’s biggest advocate for tax competition and tax havens (even when it’s risky), I’m always on the lookout for new material to share.

Premier in London to discuss constitutional reform issues

Premier Alden McLaughlin is in London this week to take part in meetings with British officials about constitutional reform and public beneficial ownership registers.

Governor Choudhury: The path on beneficial ownership

The Cayman Islands must take control of specific changes to its beneficial ownership regime for registered companies, rather than allowing “someone else” to do it for us, Governor Anwar Choudhury said Thursday during an interview with the Cayman Compass.
Cayman Compass is the Cayman Islands' most trusted news website. We provide you with the latest breaking news from the Cayman Islands, as well as other parts of the Caribbean.

Support efforts to resist ownership registry

The Cayman Islands government should be supported by everyone in its efforts to address the U.K.’s recent action to progress a bill pushing us to implement a public beneficial ownership registry by 2020.

Weekend Mail Call: Beneficial ownership disclosure

On May 1, the U.K. House of Commons decided that Cayman and other British overseas territories must create public registries listing the owners of companies registered in their jurisdictions. It apparently caught Cayman’s leaders by surprise.

After UK ‘betrayal,’ Premier heads to London for private meetings

A pall has been cast over what was supposed to be a celebratory event in London early next week marking the 60-year anniversary of the Cayman Islands coat-of-arms following a vote in the U.K. House of Commons that many observers believe will do serious damage to Cayman’s financial services industry.

Public financial registers

Today's editorial cartoon

Letter: Public registry would harm legitimate business

Does anyone really think that the true criminals are not smart enough to find another venue to base their money laundering efforts in?

International press has little sympathy for ‘dirty money’ ‘tax havens’

The international press dedicated a huge amount of column inches this week to the decision by the U.K. parliament to force its overseas territories to make public the owners of companies registered in their jurisdiction, if necessary through an order in council.

Bush: An obligation to protect the people of the Cayman Islands

In the event that the matter cannot be sorted out through negotiation, the Premier, Mr. Alden McLaughlin, and the Cabinet have my full support to determine the legitimacy of the proposals through the legal system as the same appear to be a clear violation of the Cayman Islands Constitution, an individual’s legitimate right to privacy.

Byles: When politics trump respect

The Cayman Islands has demonstrated consistently that it will go very far in cooperating with overseas authorities to help in the fight against tax evasion, as well as to fight money laundering and terrorist financing.
Cayman Compass is the Cayman Islands' most trusted news website. We provide you with the latest breaking news from the Cayman Islands, as well as other parts of the Caribbean.

Cayman beneficial ownership laws take effect

The Cayman Islands on July 1 began to operate under new laws that will introduce a technology-based system to enhance its existing regime of maintaining and exchanging information about the true owners of Cayman-registered entities.

37 bills approved in LA’s final session

The final meeting of the 2013-2017 Legislative Assembly may ultimately be remembered for its failure to approve regulatory changes to the Cayman Islands legal profession, but lawmakers approved more than three dozen new laws or changes to existing legislation.

EDITORIAL – Beneficial ownership registry: Why rush to establish what is not a global...

In a keynote speech at a conference at Blackstone Chambers in London, Premier Alden McLaughlin last week noted that Cayman leads the way with its adherence to relevant international standards. It is not the absence of rules but the introduction of sensible and balanced regulation that has ensured business growth in the islands, he said.

Beneficial ownership platform on track for June deadline

Following the passage of three legislative amendment bills last week, Cayman will establish a centralized beneficial ownership platform by the June 2017 deadline agreed to with the U.K., government officials said in a media roundtable on Monday.

Premier delivers keynote in London

In a keynote speech at a conference at Blackstone Chambers, a set of barristers chambers that specializes in commercial and public law and financial services, Premier Alden McLaughlin described in detail how the economic development of the Cayman Islands “is rooted in constitutional foundations.”

Premier to update UK on beneficial ownership

Premier Alden McLaughlin is in London this week to meet with leaders of law firms, financial institutions, government departments and U.K. MPs. “This is one more opportunity to tell the good story that is Cayman’s to MPs and Peers,” he said.

Beneficial ownership registry approved

The Legislative Assembly passed three bills Monday that will enable the creation of a searchable, corporate ownership registry, moving the Cayman Islands closer to compliance with a U.K. agreement established in April.

Beneficial ownership, lawyers’ rules up for debate

Long-awaited, controversial changes that will have a profound impact on the Cayman Islands financial services industry will be on the agenda next month in what is likely to be the final Legislative Assembly meeting of the current Progressives-led coalition government.

Second public consultation period on beneficial ownership

Government has announced the start of a second public consultation period for the planned exchange of beneficial ownership information with foreign law enforcement and tax authorities through a centralized platform.

Beneficial ownership: Cyberthreat a concern in plan

The risk of cyberattack has been highlighted as a potential concern as the Cayman Islands government looks to develop a platform to speedily share information on company ownership with law enforcement.
Cayman Compass is the Cayman Islands' most trusted news website. We provide you with the latest breaking news from the Cayman Islands, as well as other parts of the Caribbean.

FATF calls on G-20 to commit to beneficial ownership standards

The Financial Action Task Force has called on the governments of the 20 largest economies to issue a public commitment to meet FATF standards on beneficial ownership. “The challenge today is not the lack of international standards to improve transparency. The challenge lies in the effective implementation of these measures,” the FATF said.

Cayman Finance, government sign new agreement

Cayman Finance has signed a new Memorandum of Understanding with the Cayman Islands government “to enhance the already close working relationship that Cayman’s financial services industry has with government,” Cayman Finance said in a statement.

Butterfield backs change to confidentiality laws

Butterfield Group has stated that it welcomes proposed changes to the laws governing the disclosure of confidential information in the Cayman Islands.

Beneficial ownership: Government says US must sign first

The Cayman Islands will not adopt a mechanism for the exchange of beneficial ownership data that is not implemented by the United States.

Business in Brief: Law Society, Bar Association endorse anti-corruption statement

The Cayman Islands Law Society and the Caymanian Bar Association have endorsed the anti-corruption statement released by U.K. and Irish professional bodies including The Law Society of England and Wales, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners.

EDITORIAL – Cayman’s upcoming brutal battle on beneficial ownership

In regard to the Cayman Islands’ stance on financial services transparency, there is no room for lack of clarity.

Cayman hasn’t committed to automatic sharing of ownership data

Contrary to international media reports and a press release from No. 10 Downing Street, the Cayman Islands government did not commit to the automatic exchange of beneficial ownership information prior to the Anti-Corruption Summit in London last week.

Premier wants ‘seat at table’ in talks

Addressing world leaders at the Anti-Corruption Summit in London on Thursday, Premier Alden McLaughlin defended Cayman’s anti-money laundering and tax avoidance regimes and called for a seat at the table in developing a new global standard on sharing information about who owns companies and trusts.

Cayman joins beneficial ownership initiative

The Cayman Islands will join a new United Kingdom-led initiative on developing a global standard for sharing information on ownership of companies and trusts, the Ministry of Financial Services announced Wednesday.

Mixed reactions to Cayman Islands participation in transparency initiative

The Cayman Islands’ commitment to join an initiative for the development of a global standard to exchange beneficial ownership information has been met with a mixture of understanding and concern about the long-term stability of the financial services industry in Cayman.

Financial services body: Cayman links to Panama Papers minor

The online database of entities, officers and intermediaries linked to the Panama Papers release shows that links to the Cayman Islands are relatively minor, according to Cayman Finance.

Cayman joins iniative for new ‘global standard’ on company ownership info

The Cayman Islands will join the United Kingdom’s effort to develop a new global standard for sharing information on the owners of companies and trusts, likely to include automatic exchange of ownership information, according to the Ministry of Financial Services.

Anti-Corruption Summit focuses on beneficial ownership information in wake of Panama Papers

The massive leak of 11.5 million documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca has renewed world attention on tax havens, offshore companies and beneficial ownership.

EDITORIAL – Supporting our Cayman delegation in London

“Politics stops at the water’s edge” is the now-famous saying by Arthur Vandenburg, the former Republican chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who called for a stop to partisan politics when international relations were concerned.

Premier, minister head to London as beneficial ownership deal unravels

The United Kingdom is seeking an agreement with other leading economic powers in western Europe – and elsewhere – that will lead to the automatic exchange of data on company and trust ownership information.

Uncertainty remains over who will respond to companies requests

Cayman Islands government officials are still trying to decide who will be responsible locally for handling formal requests for company and trust ownership information under an agreement they signed with the United Kingdom last month.

Cayman Finance supports beneficial ownership ‘enhancement’

Cayman Finance said it supports the agreement concluded between the Cayman Islands government and the United Kingdom over improvements to the way beneficial ownership information is collected and exchanged with foreign tax authorities and law enforcement.

Premier: ‘Beneficial ownership’ agreement finalized with UK

The Cayman Islands government and the United Kingdom announced Monday a new agreement on accessing company ownership information, that has been in the works since 2013.

Legal advice sought on ‘direct rule’ threat

The Cayman Islands government has engaged “top constitutional counsel” to challenge any potential threat of the U.K. taking “direct rule” of its territories.

Offshore centers: Panama a Holdout to transparency

As the pressure on the U.K. grows to rein in offshore centers in its overseas territories and Crown dependencies, financial service providers there are saying they have implemented the global transparency standards that are lacking in Panama and elsewhere.

Direct rule: UK gov’t urged to consider ‘nuclear option’

The U.K. government should consider imposing direct rule on its overseas territories and Crown dependencies if they fail to comply with U.K. tax laws, according to Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Ministry: Legislative changes concerning beneficial ownership and privacy coming

Following the release of the “Panama Papers,” the Cayman Islands Ministry of Financial Services has issued a statement saying “the disclosure has further amplified the need for global cooperation,” but it would need to be in accordance with accepted international standards.

Cayman National entities knowingly helped clients evade taxes

In their guilty plea in a U.S. court on Wednesday, Cayman National Trust and Cayman National Securities admitted to encouraging U.S. taxpayer clients to open accounts in the name of sham trusts and sham companies in the Cayman Islands to conceal their beneficial ownership of these accounts.

Cayman and UK officials discuss beneficial ownership

Following an invitation from Premier Alden McLaughlin at the Joint Ministerial Council in London last December, senior representatives from the U.K.’s National Crime Agency and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office visited the Cayman Islands last week to discuss cooperation between both countries’ law enforcement agencies and Cayman’s progress in enhancing its beneficial ownership information regime.

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