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Introduction to Cayman Islands Corporations
The Cayman Islands were once part of the British Empire as a colony and then became a British Overseas Territory. English is the primary language in the Caymans. English common law has always been the standard for its judicial system. The Cayman Islands are well known as a tax haven because it has no income taxes and has an easy process for offshore incorporation. The Cayman Exempted Company has become a very popular choice for foreign businesspeople to hold offshore bank accounts because of the privacy and Cayman tax-free benefits.
Cayman Islands corporations operate under the Companies Law of 1961. Their corporate laws attract international business and numerous offshore investors choose to incorporate in their jurisdiction. Incorporating in the Cayman Islands is attractive to many because it is a very developed and stable economy, including support from trust companies, lawyers, banks, insurance managers, accountants, administrators, and mutual fund managers. Furthermore, companies can find local support services to aid them.
Benefits of Registering a Company in the Cayman Islands
Why do companies incorporate in Cayman Islands? There are many reasons why foreign investors choose the Cayman Islands for incorporation. Some of the benefits which Cayman corporations receive include:
Cayman Corporate Name
Naming your Cayman Islands corporation requires being aware of the restrictions that come along with this process. Your corporation name needs to be unique and cannot be similar to the name of another corporation. Also, no wording that mentions royal patronage like “bank,” “insurance,” “trust,” “chartered,” “assurance,” “mutual fund,” “company management,” or “Chamber of Commerce” can be included in the name without a license to do so. Make sure to check if your name selections are both available and usable before starting your incorporation process.
Cayman Island Registered Agent and Registered Office
In order to form a corporation in the Cayman Islands, you need a Cayman Islands registered agent and registered office which is automatically included with the service of forming the company. This company has established tens of thousands of offshore companies since 1977 and information can be obtained by using the number or form on this page.
To incorporate in the Cayman Islands, a minimum of one shareholder is required.
Directors and Officers
At least one director is required for incorporation in the Cayman Islands. Resident directors and secretaries are not required for incorporation.
The Cayman Islands requires no minimum authorized capital shares.
Profits and distributions to shareholders along with exchanging shares are not taxable either to the corporation or the shareholder. There is no withholding of taxes. In addition, there are no estate, gift, or inheritance taxes levied on corporate share transfers.
Annual registration fees for Cayman Islands corporations according to the Cayman Islands registrar of companies fee schedule cost $750 USD as of this writing. There are additional fees for the registered agent that are required.
Public access to records in The Register of Directors and Officers or the Register of Shareholders is prohibited. Shareholder and director names remain private in the Cayman Islands.
Accounting and Audit Requirements
Annual returns must be filed yearly in the Cayman Islands. However, there is no requirement for corporations to submit financial records when filing annual returns.
Annual General Meeting
An annual general meeting is required for corporations operating in the Cayman Islands. These meetings do not need to be held locally, and companies may hold their meetings anywhere in the world.
Time Required for Incorporation
Once you have completed the process of registration, the turnaround time to receive a certificate of incorporation is anywhere from one to four days, depending on the documentation and registration turnaround time.
In the Cayman Islands, shelf companies are available to investors wishing to incorporate faster.
Cayman Islands Corporation Conclusion
The law governing Cayman Islands Corporations has been in existence since 1961. The Cayman Islands are a British Overseas Territory where English is the native language.
The Cayman Islands offer their corporations many benefits including political & economic stability, fast incorporation, low registration fees, and the ability to own a corporation as the sole shareholder and director.
Privacy is one of the biggest benefits with a Cayman Islands corporation as no financial records or shareholder’s names are registered with the government, there is no public access to The Register of Directors and Officers or the Register of Shareholders.