$50 will lift lid on company directors

| 30/09/2019 | 30 Comments
Cayman News Service

(CNS): An amendment to the Companies Law passed in the Legislative Assembly in July comes into effect tomorrow, allowing members of the public to pay $50 to search the General Registry and find out who the directors are for a specified company for both local businesses registered here as well as foreign offshore companies, including exempted ones. But the information remains limited to just the names of directors and the company address.

The General Registry will open a dedicated kiosk at the Government Administration Building on Elgin Avenue to facilitate the inspections, which officials say must be made in person and cannot be carried out online.

While no one knows for sure how many people will take up the opportunity to learn more about companies registered here, officials have said they need to be prepared. “We are anticipating that there may be a lot of enquiring minds. We have to be adequately prepared for that,” Deputy Registrar Donnell Dixon recently told the Cayman Compass.

The slight change, which allows anyone to pay and lift the lid on directors’ names, comes as a result of recommendations made by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force in its review. It is not directly related to what could be the imposition of a full public register of all companies registered here, which would make details of the actual beneficial owners available to everyone.

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Category: Business

Comments (30)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Great. Cayman Marl Road going to have a field day trying to ruin more peoples lives with her garbage now she gas access to this.

  2. Anonymous says:

    As someone noted yesterday, this action will not really help anyone, neither the average nosy person, or the investigative journalist. Locally-operating companies (eg Fosters, Kirks etc.) will have little of interest to outsiders. Its the foreign-owned “exempted” companies that will be of more interest. However many of those exempted companies will have corporate directors provided by a Cayman financial services firm, which is the model that keeps Cayman’s finance industry in business. Doing a search on XYZ Limited may only find that the directors are corporate entities belonging to a bank or law firm in Cayman, and therefore you will have spent $50 on a search with no useful result. The whole thing is non-news.

  3. Anonymous says:

    The access to view ownership register – soon come!

    • Anonymous says:

      Jamaica’s registry already providing access to view both directors and shareholders information at a cost of $50. Perhaps where this government got idea from on the cost to view.

  4. SSM345 says:

    Can’t wait to see who the Directors are of Verdant Isle. Take my money.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Just the latest act of self-sabotage by not putting this online. It’s as if our leadership are trying to get the worst possible international transparency report card. Guys, it’s not 1983 anymore! Who are we trying to protect, and why? The millionaire Directors who preside over the decision-making of these companies? Aren’t we trying to demonstrate effort to weed-out (any) bad actors? Wrong message delivered!

  6. Anonymous says:

    The cost is seemingly high. Is that a deterrent? We don’t pay that much to search for Judicial services, nor Company searches. This needs to be addressed.

  7. Anonymous says:

    $50!!!!???? Geez Cayman. That’s steep. But I guess you don’t really want to encourage any regular ol’ Joe to plop down money.

  8. Anonymous says:

    100,000+ companies most of them launder millions in Cayman, legally with the help of our moral legal system.

    Who is gonna spend the 5 million to expose them all and open the biggest legal case in Cayman.

    • Anonymous says:

      How does knowing the identity of a company’s Directors prove anything, or even raise any suspicions? Especially when you also have to know the corresponding name of the valid company for any search to produce a result? You don’t get to leaf through the financials like these are publicly listed companies….

    • Anonymous says:

      Not much use if the search only reveals a name and no other details. There could be many individuals around the globe with the name Jane Doe. Waste of $50.

  9. Anonymous says:

    The $50 fee is high – should be similar to what Lands & Survey charges the public to inspect the Land Register.

    • Anonymous says:

      Bahamas/BVI are $10 for 30 mins of online searching of Corp History/Standing, and Reg’d address. In Cayman, a local person will also have to physically attend and there is cost and hassle in that too. Cayman never seems to want to do things the easy way, even when compelled by their own failing report cards.

  10. Directors = Mind and Management. Voting shareholders = “ownership” says:

    Sorry CNS. I love you, but Directors don’t “own” companies. Ownership belongs solely to the ultimate beneficial owners (the “voting” shareholders) of a company.

    CNS: OK, you’re right and I’ve changed it. Do you love us even more now?

    • Anonymous says:

      Are the beneficial owners the same people the Trade and Business licensing authorizes have been told are the majority Caymanian shareholders?

    • Anonymous says:

      There are times when a shareholder is also a director. At least up until I got out of companies management a few years ago. It was not unlawful, just better business practice that I am sure many will understand but not unheard of.

  11. Anonymous says:

    We should have an online portal for the general public to pay to ascertain whether a company is paid up and registered in good standing, Reg’d address, and Directors who are responsible for that company’s activity and governance. Bahamas and BVI have had this in place for a half decade at least. Reciprocally, every paid request, and who requested and when, is logged to the company record at the registry.

    • Chris Johnson says:

      In theory you are spot on. However you can get no information on BVI directors or shareholders from their registry. So you are wrong on this aspect.

      To send secretaries down to the Cayman registry to obtain information on directors just Ilustrates how backward Cayman is . The information is on the ROC data base so why are we not getting on line access.

      Cayman technology seems to be antiquated to say the least.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Directors don’t own companies, they operate them for shareholders. #facepalm

  13. Anonymous says:

    How many layers can you go for the $50?

    • Under the lid says:

      Company directors can be hired from professional service providers and that’s perfectly legal here, so this achieves very little. It’s ownership that tells the real story and even shareholders can be nominees.

      • Anonymous says:

        And in Cayman another company, rather than a physical person, can be a director, which tells you nothing unless you know who controls that company.. you can see how this goes, and why the reformers are pressing for the beneficial owners register to be made public.

        • Anonymous says:

          Except I don’t want them knowing my business and they have shown no valid reason why they should.

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