We know Cayman’s COVID-19 prevention measures have come with many questions regarding immigration and employment. On Friday, 3 April, representatives from HSM Chambers joined us for a live Q&A, so you could have your questions answered directly by the experts. Here are some of the highlights:
Q: I’m off island but my work permit application was approved and is set to begin in April. Will I be able to come work?
HSM: A lot is dependent upon the airport. Currently the airport is closed until 20 April 2020 and while there are flights returning residents of the Cayman Islands, which you are technically one as you have a permission to be in the Cayman Islands, you might struggle to get on the plane.
Q: In the case that a visitor stamp expires in April, what should a person do?
HSM: The visitor should just send an email to immigration asking for the extension.
Q: Is it legal for employers to force unpaid leave and unpaid holiday on employees? If so are they still required to pay 50% of medical insurance and to continue with pension contributions?
HSM: As a starting point, an employer cannot force you to take unpaid leave or your vacation leave. But under the provisions for temporary lay-off in s.42 of the Labour Law (2011 Revision), they can suspend you employment for 30 days without pay.
Employers are required to continue to maintain your health insurance during a temporary lay-off.
Q: I have to apply for PR before January 2021. Do you think the government will take into consideration loss of earnings during this period? I’m talking mainly in regards to amount you have invested and saved as they are both quite big areas on the points system.
HSM: Currently the Regulations have not changed and therefore, as matters stand, points will be awarded based upon the current regulations. It might well be the case that new regulations will lower certain criterion but until that happens, the status quo remains.
By Kevin Morales for CAYMAN COMPASS
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