Cayman: flying the flag for top talent

Date: 17 Jun 2015

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Against tough competition from the British Virgin Islands (BVI), Bermuda and the Bahamas in particular, the Cayman Islands are shooting up the popularity stakes as an offshore jurisdiction of choice for wealthy families.

Always renowned as a strong jurisdiction on the wealth management and structuring side, Cayman’s strong trust legislation is now propelling it to the front of the queue. Raymond Davern, head of private client and trusts in Cayman and the BVI for the law firm Conyers Dill & Pearman, moved to Cayman from the BVI 15 months ago. He says: “It’s fair to say that Cayman has taken off like a rocket frankly, over the last 15 months. I have established four private trust company structures for ultra-high-net worth individuals, which is unusual because they are relatively expensive to maintain, but those individuals chose Cayman from a long list of options.”

Cayman has often been at the forefront of novel trust legislation, leading the way with purpose trusts, reserved power legislation Cayman: flying the flag for top talent By Claire Coe Smith Citywealth magazine, November 2014 l 13 and other innovations. Cayman introduced STAR Trusts, its own unique form of non-charitable purpose trust legislation, in 1997, marking a significant departure from the original Bermuda model and since emulated by the BVI and many other offshore jurisdictions. Its Reserved Powers amendment to trust law came into effect in 1998, seeking to clarify a question that had long troubled the international trust industry about what powers can be reserved by a settlor of a trust, without there being a risk that a court will consider the arrangement an agency rather than a trust.

Carlos de Serpa Pimentel, head of the Cayman office at the law firm Appleby, says: “The Cayman Islands was the first jurisdiction to…To read the full article, please subscribe to our e-magazine.