New Immigration law to take effect
The new Immigration Reform Bill for the Cayman Islands which was passed by Legislators last week, will become law on Monday, extending the term limit for work permits from seven to nine years.
As a result, the Immigration Department here is preparing for an influx of customers on Monday when the Term Limit Exemption Permits (TLEPs) expire.
The law gives a 45-day reprieve to non-Caymanian workers, who otherwise would have had to leave the islands after Monday, when their Term Limit Exemption Permits expired.
Those exempted workers, about 1,500, can now stay in the British Dependent territory until December 9, as long as they get their passports regularised on Monday or Tuesday of this week.
Chief Immigration Officer Linda Evans says the Immigration Department is setting up temporary facilities to assist some of the Term Limit Exemption Permit holders who need to get their passports stamped.
After the December 9 deadline issues are resolved, the exempted workers’ employers will have to apply for a new work permit on behalf of those individuals.
In the case of non-Caymanian workers who have been in the islands for nine years, they will have to make an application for permanent residence within 90 days of the Immigration Bill coming into effect. Otherwise, they will have to leave the islands.