Guidance & Information
Guidance for applicants and checklist of documentation to be submitted when applying for a Local Companies (Control) Licence
To help us process your application as efficiently as possible, please use the checklist below to ensure that all the information we need is provided with your application. If you have any questions concerning your application or the requirements, please contact the Trade and Business Licensing Unit within the Department of Commerce and Investment on 945-0943.
Please note that all documentation submitted to the Board as copies must be certified by a notary public, Justice of the Peace, or Manager, Director or Officer of a regulated financial services provider within the Cayman Islands.
An applicant must submit the following documentation at the time of applying:
Local Companies (Control) Law Licence Application Form
Please ensure that you have answered each question FULLY and in BLOCK LETTERS. To download a copy of the application form, please click here.
Trade & Business Licence Application Form
An application for a Trade & Business Licence should be submitted at the same time as the application for the Local Companies (Control) Law licence. For further information on the Trade & Business Licence application and requirements, please click here.
Note: it is important to ensure that on both application forms the full address for the location of the business is given (including street number). General addresses such as 'George Town' are not sufficient. You must also state the block and parcel number for the property on which the business or proposed business is currently or intended to be situated.
A processing fee of CI$200.00 (two hundred) and a licence fee of CI$2500.00 (two thousand five hundred).
Please provide a letter giving details of the proposed business. In preparing this letter you are advised to bear in mind and address the criteria that will be taken into account by the Trade & Business Licensing Board when considering your application. These are contained in section 11(4) of the Local Companies (Control) Law (2007 Revision) which states as follows:
- "11(4) Subject to any general directions which the Governor may, from time to time, give in respect of the consideration of such applications the Board shall, in deciding whether or not to grant a licence, have regard inter alia to the following matters- the economic situation of the Islands and the due protection of persons already engaged in business in the Islands;
- the nature and previous conduct of the company and the persons having an interest in that company whether as directors, shareholders or otherwise;
- the advantage or disadvantage which may result from that company carrying on business in the Islands;
- the desirability of retaining in the control of Caymanians the economic resources of the Islands;
- the efforts made by the company to obtain Caymanian participation;
- the number of additional people from outside the Islands who would be required to reside in the Islands were the application to be granted;
- whether the company, its directors and employees have and are likely to continue to have the necessary professional, technical and other knowledge to carry on the business proposed by the company;
- the finances of the company and the economic feasibility of its plans;
- whether the true ownership and control of the company have been satisfactorily established; and
- the environmental and social consequences that could result from the carrying on of the business proposed to be carried on by the company."
Return of Shareholdings
You must provide a return of shareholdings in the company at the time of its inception giving the following particulars:
- the number and par value of each class of shares issued by the company;
- the voting and other rights attached to each class of shares;
- a statement of the number and par value of each class of shares beneficially owned by Caymanians;
- a statement of the number and par value of each class of shares held by other persons; and
- a statement that the effective control of the company is not, either directly or indirectly or by reason of any artifice or device vested in or permitted to pass to persons other than as specifically shown in the return of shareholdings.
Note: If the applicant is a publicly traded company the Trade & Business Licensing Board must be so advised and verification of such status must be submitted with the application.
Copy of Certificates
Please provide a certified copy of:
- the Certificate of Incorporation
- the Certificate of Change of Name (if necessary)
- the Memorandum and Articles of Association (or by-laws of the company)
Register of Directors, Officers and Members
Please provide a certified copy of the register of directors, officers and members.
Note: Where any director, officer or member of a company is itself a company, then a copy of the register of directors, officers and members for that company must also be submitted and so on until the identity of the individual or individuals who ultimately direct and/or own the company for which the application is being made is disclosed.
Exception to this requirement: Corporate directors or officers controlled and routinely used by regulated financial services providers to act as director or officer for clients of their firm, company or institution upon so advising the Board.
The Local Companies (Control) Law (2007 Revision) requires the Board when considering an application under that law to have regard to the efforts made by the applicant to obtain Caymanian participation in the company. Prior to submitting your application you must therefore run advertisements in the local media seeking such participation. The advertisements should be published in at least two (2) issues of a newspaper published and circulated in the Cayman Islands with at least seven business days apart, but no more than ten business days between the issues. The advertisements should include:
- the name, nature and location of the proposed or existing business, project or development;
- the total capital investment required and;
- where the applicant's proposed business activity is to be phased, details as to the capital requirements and timing for each phase must also be stated. As of Thursday, 1 September, 2016 Caymanians looking to participate in potential business endeavors with foreign investors must state their interest, in writing, to both the investors and the Trade and Business Licensing Board. Additionally, when submitting their applications to the board, foreign investors must include copies of the two local newspaper ads, published in accordance with section 11 (4) (e) of the law, that solicited Caymanian participation. These advertisements must specifically instruct Caymanian investors to send letters of their interest to both the LCCL applicant and the Trade & Business Board. Copies of the advertisements and details of the responses received to them must be included with the LCCL application. Letters from Caymanians are to be addressed to the Trade and Business Licensing Board, c/o the Department of Commerce and Investment, Government Administration Building, 133 Elgin Avenue Suite 126, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands or sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note 1: An application for a Local Companies (Control) Law licence should not be submitted until at least five days after the second advertisement was published.
Note 2: An applicant may make a request to the Board, either before or at the time the application is made, to waive the requirement to advertise if in their opinion there are special circumstances for doing so. In making such a request, the applicant must explain fully the reasons why the requirement should be waived.
With respect to all non-Caymanian Directors/Members/Officers of the Company - a current/updated Resume must be submitted with the application of the LCCL
As noted above, section 11(4)(b) of the Local Companies (Control) Law (2007 Revision) requires the Board to take into account the previous conduct of the company and the persons having an interest in that company whether as directors, shareholders or otherwise. An application for a Local Companies (Control) Law licence must therefore, with respect to every director and shareholder, be accompanied by:
- a character reference from a person who is not related to, and who has known, the person concerned for at least three years;
- a financial reference from a bank or other similar institution (eg brokerage) where an account has been maintained for not less than three years;
- a police clearance certificate from the place where the person concerned has lived for the previous six months. If the individual is from a country where such a certificate is not available the Board is to be advised and it will make its own background enquiries;
- copy of the picture page of the individual's passport.
Note: It is likely that financial institutions will have these documents in their possession having carried out their own due diligence requirements on their clients. By providing copies to the Board at the time of application will facilitate the efficient processing of the application and avoid delays caused by deferrals to obtain further information. Please be reminded that all copies of documents must be certified by a notary public, a Justice of the Peace or a manager, director or officer of a regulated financial services provider within the Cayman Islands.
Certain types of business activities require inspections and/or approval from other Government Departments or statutory bodies. It is the responsibility of every applicant to determine whether or not their proposed business requires such inspection or approval.