Section 238 of the Companies Law (2020 Revision) provides an avenue through which shareholders of a merged or consolidated Cayman Islands company can apply to have the fair value of their shares determined by the Grand Court. Section 238 has its origins in Delaware law and was first introduced into the Cayman Islands Companies Law in 2009. After a relatively uneventful first few years in operation, Section 238 is now at the forefront of jurisprudence.
In late 2018 the Stamp Duty Law (Revised) was amended in order to eliminate the growing practice of reducing stamp duty due to the government by means of linked property transactions (LPTs). Essentially, the reason for introducing the LPT provisions was to ensure that stamp duty is calculated on the total value of the raw land and the dwelling constructed on that land in the case of an LPT where a development scheme links the purchase of the raw land with the subsequent construction of a dwelling.
The UK High Court recently found that cryptoassets such as bitcoin are property and are therefore capable of being the subject of a proprietary injunction or freezing order. Although this is a first-instance decision, there is no reason why the Cayman courts would approach the development of the legal concept of 'property' any less purposefully.
The government recently approved the Private Funds Bill 2020 and an amendment to the Mutual Funds Law (2020 Revision). The legislation is the result of certain EU and other international recommendations and has been developed to align the Cayman Islands investment fund regulatory regime with those of other jurisdictions. This article summarises the key features of both pieces of legislation.
It has been more than a decade since blockchain – or distributed ledger technology – appeared on the financial services landscape. Yet, it is still capable of generating excitement as its value in transforming processes continues to develop. As blockchain increases its reach and its impact in specific industries grows, this will generate a need for suitable models of insurance. Cayman-based technology companies have expressed interest in buying insurance from local insurers.
In a recent case, the Guernsey Court of Appeal upheld the deputy bailiff's interpretation of Section 53(3) of the Trusts (Guernsey) Law 2007 that a sole beneficiary can use that section of the law to terminate a discretionary trust even if the trust instrument contains a power to add further beneficiaries.
When considering a trust structure for the express purpose of asset protection within family succession planning, the prospect of divorce is never far from the settlor's or draftsperson's mind. Divorce is a costly undertaking and never more so than when consideration must be given to offshore trust assets and the role of a trustee. Combined with the additional possibility of a successful claim against trust property, the cost has the potential to wipe out the anticipated benefit to future generations.
The States of Guernsey recently passed the Companies (Guernsey) Law 2008 (Insolvency) (Amendment) Ordinance 2020, making Guernsey an even more desirable forum for insolvency proceedings. The changes show that Guernsey is prepared to arm insolvency office holders with the necessary tools and powers to tackle, draw in and preserve the assets of an insolvent company for the benefit of creditors.
A shift in Guernsey's corporate and individual attitude towards the misuse of data is now central to the Office of the Data Protection Authority's (ODPA's) future approach to governance and enforcement in Guernsey. This article rounds up the key issues which the ODPA has communicated and which will dictate its approach, including changes in workplace culture and the delayed introduction of the self-funded charging system.
Wealth is increasing exponentially among some of the world's richest families to the extent that, for many of these families, it makes commercial sense to set up their own bespoke family office to look after their key operations – and they are increasingly looking to Guernsey as the place to do it. There are a range of factors as to why Guernsey is becoming a jurisdiction of choice in this regard, including political stability and the fact that it has the expertise and personnel to manage family offices well.
Recent research highlights the increasing likelihood of people being willing to dispute a will and go to court if they are unhappy with the division of their relative's estate, and this is definitely an increasing area of work in Jersey. This article answers some pertinent questions concerning wills.
Insider fraud is a problem that persists at all levels of society, irrespective of whether the entity has commercial or altruistic motives. This begs the question of what internal controls and procedures employers in any sector can implement to reduce the risk of insider fraud. This article outlines five steps which could significantly reduce the risk for businesses of any size or type.
Jersey is long established as a primary centre for the establishment of offshore funds and has been at the forefront of international developments, which have attracted international sponsors, promoters, fund managers, advisers and investors. One of the key features of Jersey's fund industry is the flexibility and range of structures and corresponding regulatory and commercial approaches that can be used for funds.
The Royal Court recently declared void certain actions of a trustee by which the assets of two Jersey law trusts had been transferred into a circular ownerless corporate structure, terminating the trusts. This case highlights the need for trustees to obtain detailed legal and tax advice when considering a restructuring of assets held in trust and is a helpful reminder that a trustee's duty to account is at the heart of the trustee-beneficiary relationship.
Under the Security Interests (Jersey) Law 1983, the powers of a secured party on enforcement were limited to a power of sale. The Security Interests (Jersey) Law 2012 changed the way in which security is created over intangible movables and introduced a wider range of enforcement powers. This article examines the enforcement of security interests in the event of default.