Researching UK Companies

We get a lot of interest from UK companies considering setting up a holding comapny in Bermuda, there are many benefits to this particularly if your long term plans are to more or retire offshore.

Once you are offshore yourself the control of your company can be more easily demonstrated to be non-UK based if your company is controlled by a holding company.

We use a popular UK Company information Site called Reporting Accounts to get a quick idea of who ever we are speaking with, what is great about this site is that it is free and combines together information from Government and private sector sites, such as Companies House and Google into one place giving us a great quick insight into any UK company.

They also have a Blog section which gets updated with regular corporate news items on topical UK company reporting issues, as the regreatable insolvency of Carillion.

Bermudian Life

To get an idea of the life in bermuda we can recommend that you visit another site we run, its a hobby, personal one owned and managed by one of our Directors, but his blog does share some of the wonderful places and aspects of the life here.

It is well worth visiting from time to time and reading more about Bermuda

The life here is not for everyone, there are limited shops, facilities and opportunities but if you can find one, then a wonderful life can be made here for sure.

His site about Bermudian Life can be found here

 

 

How Do I Get a Bermudian Work Permit?

For all those seeking employment in Bermuda, it is important to know that work visas are not issued by the Bermuda Government. Instead a work permit is issued to the employer who is registered and approved by the Bermuda government. The work permits are issued for a maximum period of 6 years with the rights reserved with the Government to revoke or reduce the duration of the permits whenever they feel necessary to do so.

If you are not a Bermudian and seek employment in Bermuda then the first thing you have to do is to look for a prospective employer who is based in Bermuda. If you are offered employment by the Bermudian employer then the employer has to obtain the work permit. The onus of obtaining the work permit is on the employer and not the prospective employee. All the procedure is done at the cost of the employer only.

Different types of work permits are issued depending upon the duration and the type of the work in Bermuda.

Requirements for obtaining a work permit

It’s mandatory that only the employer can apply for the work permit. The onus of obtaining the work permit is on the employer and not the prospective employee. The employee can enter the land only if he receives the permission from the government. Moreover, when a person visits the country as a tourist, he/she cannot seek any kind of employment.

Before granting permission to a person to work in Bermuda, the government assesses whether there is a qualified Bermudian for the job or whether the spouse of a Bermudian is qualified or a permanent Resident certificate holder is qualified. If any of the above is qualified and interested for the job then they are preferred first.

The employer seeking work permit is expected to conduct genuine search procedure like advertising the vacancies in the newspapers and on the website www.bermudajobboard.com. If qualified Bermudians or the spouse of a Bermudian or a PRC holder is available then the employer has to consider them as the initial choice before hiring a foreign national.

If at all the employer prefers to employ a foreign national for the job when qualified Bermudians, Spouses of the Bermudians or PRC holders are available for the job then the employer has to give valid and satisfactory reasons as to why he is not employing a Bermudian or the spouse of a Bermudian or a PRC holder for the job.

The employer who seeks work permit for a foreign national is solely responsible for all the details that are filled in the application. According to Bermuda Immigration and Protection Amendment (No.2) Act, 2013, this responsibility cannot be delegated to anyone else by the employer.

It is the responsibility of the employer to inform all the unsuccessful Bermudian candidates, PRCs and the spouses of the Bermudians about the result of their applications prior to the submission of the applications for the work permit, to the Immigration Department.

Employers are required to provide evidences to the Department of Immigration that notifications have been given to the unsuccessful candidates who applied for the job. An email or a letter may be sufficient for this.The notification to the unsuccessful candidate should specify the reasons for his/her non-selection for the job. This information is necessary for obtaining the work permit according to Recruitment Disclosure section.

The Department of Immigration scrutinises all the applications for work permit thoroughly. Even though the Department does not have the right to force any employer to employ a Bermudian or a spouse of a Bermudian or a PRC holder, it can prevent the employment of a foreign national by refusing toprovide the work permit.

Work permit holder’s responsibilities

The work permit holder has to abide by all the conditions placed in the work permit. All the job responsibilities as given in the job description have to be adhered. The general information given at the back of the work permit has to be taken note of.

If permit holder has the responsibility of repatriating his/her dependants then the permit holder must honour the commitment and ensure that when he/she departs from the country of Bermuda they also depart along with the permit holder unless they got the permission for residing in the country and seek employment.

Should be proficient in English

The persons who seek employment in Bermuda in the construction industry or under the Portuguese Accord are required to possess working knowledge in English.

If the Minister of Immigration feels that permit holder is not good in English or the language skills then he/she will not be allowed to work in the construction industry. This is done to comply with the health and safety standards prevailing in the country. If the permit holder is questionable in English language then he/she shall be landed for a period of 7 days and may have to undergo testing by the Immigration Department, passing which he/she shall be retained in Bermuda or else will be ordered to the leave the country.

Work Permit Card

open-work-permitsWork permit cards are issued to the applicants for global, standard and new business, for periodic work permit holders and their dependants who are sponsored. This permit card is to enable the employees and their dependants to travel to and from the country.

The employer has to submit an application complete in all respects with the required documents and the fee for the application and the work permit card.

In the following cases, new work permit cards are issued:

  • If the card is stolen, lost or damaged
  • If there is a change in the name of the employer (on account of merger, when a person works under a new employer, the current permit card should be retained and it should be changed on its expiry)
  • When the card has expired
  • If the name of the card holder changes

If the permit holders are already staying in Bermuda along with their sponsored dependants then a requisition letter for the issue of work permit cards for all the persons who seek the permit cards along with a fee of $151.00 should be submitted by the employer.

Life in Bermuda

Living in Bermuda is one of the lifelong dreams of many due to its high flying and fast lifestyle which is complemented by a high income and job contracts that would enable you to stay in this beautiful cluster of islands for an extended period of time. To plan realistically, check your work permit to see how long it is valid so that you can rent an apartment during its tenure.

Permits and citizenship

citizenshipJob extensions of three years are not uncommon but heavy fees are levied on extensions and you may have to be prepared for your company to recover some of it from your salary. Your performance will also count when your employer appraises you. In today’s world there are seldom second chances and if you manage in doing an impressive job, your employer would happily grant you an extension on your work permit. However, a word of caution, no matter how long you stay in Bermuda, you will never get a citizenship. Voting rights are not there for you unless you get married to a Bermudian and cohabit for 10 years.

Boarding

Housing can pose a problem in Bermuda and is quite expensive for the average Joe. Your employer may make temporary arrangements but you do need to find something for yourself which does not burn a hole in your pocket. Normally expats like to live in small apartments or share with fellow workers, if you want an approximation of rentals in Bermuda, there’s Bermuda Housing.

Taxes

Begin Taxes OnlineLiving in Bermuda can be a double edged sword. On one hand, it has a great lifestyle always in rhythm with the high salaries paid to professionals while on the other hand there is high cost of living which actually tends to balance things out. People are not taxed for income, wealth or capital; however you’ll find a lot of under the cover taxes which make Bermuda one of the costliest places in the world to be. As a benchmark, the cost of living index in Bermuda is 4 times that of the United States and nearly thrice that of the UK. While shifting here, you’ll need to pay taxes on all your stuff except for a few used items like old clothes and books. Bermuda requires you to pay taxes to your home country, especially if it’s the USA, UK or Canada. There are few relaxations regarding this, an individual who does not earn more than $80,000 will not have to pay income tax.

Options for family

If you’re planning to move here with your wife and kids, make sure your spouse takes the same path of applying for a job and she should have a separate work permit.Additionally, expatriates are not permitted to hold multiple day jobs here. You have to keep in mind that in a small island like Bermuda, the natives will be given first preference, when your work permit runs out, your employer will normally try to recruit a Bermudian for the same job, however if you’re good at what you do , getting an extension shouldn’t be a problem. Nowadays there are no term limits on permits and can be extended depending on the employer’s needs.

Partners

Bermuda allows your wife and kids to stay with you during your tenure but the same does not apply when your partner is there. He or she will be treated as a tourist and will have to comply with tourist regulations including leaving the island on time. Old fashioned landlords may frown on you for this but hotels pose no such problems. Recently, an amendment made it possible to have your significant other and offspring to live in Bermuda during your stay, depending on some conditions.

Education and learning

educationEducation of children in this island nation is quite up the mark and most schools are run by the government, however some foreigners like to send their children to a private school. The ethnic diversity of these schools helps to foster a spirit of understanding and compassion in children from a very early age which is very encouraging. The schools are professional, friendly and helpful at all times with highly qualified staff.

Medical and other insurance

Medical insurance is a headache in Bermuda and its cost is more that that in North America. Automatic medical coverage is non-existent in Bermuda, and expenses for healthcare have overtaken other countries to occupy the second highest spot. Surprisingly, unlike most other countries, Bermuda does not have either a national health system or a system of medical services.

Entertainment and culture

Entertainment in Bermuda is probably the best in the world; you’ll strike up lasting friendships very easily with fellow expats and locals alike and enjoy their company. Don’t miss this opportunity to wriggle out some facts about Bermuda if you can. The natives will take you in as one of their own and you can have a good time at one of the many pubs and restaurants which bear quaint names with the likes of Hog Penny, Robin Hood, Pickled Onion and Henry VII throbbing with music and chatter on weekends. If you are a formal kind of a person then you might want to attend a few lunches and dinners hosted by the expatriate community in Bermuda. In a recent study, Bermuda ranked as second most friendly country in the world because of its overriding advantages of economy, friendliness, community integration and cultural absorption.

Gastronomic Pleasures

gastronomic-experience-istria-815x459An article on Bermuda would be incomplete without a mention of its delicious cuisine. Typical Bermudian cuisines are the pan fried fish coupled with sweet potatoes, codfish preparations with potatoes served with egg sauce, fish soup with fish head with black rum and peppers. You can also taste broiled lobster seasoned with lemon and melting butter. There’s also a dish which they call Hoppin’ John with peas and rice. But a word of caution, most of these items are expensive, so if you are a gourmet, try to learn making them yourself so you can treat yourself and friends to a great meal when the mood suits you.

Transport

Public transport is the main mode of transport comprising of trains and buses. If you carry a monthly pass, then you could easily avail of unlimited rides on bus and ferry within the time limit. Credit cards of the home country are advised to be retained as their coverage is much wider.

As the time of leaving Bermuda draws closer (unless your permit is renewed) take time out to pack your stuff and say your goodbyes. Bermuda will stay in your heart for the rest of your life and the least you can do is smile and wave goodbye.

Why choose Bermuda for your offshore company?

Bermuda, just by the name of it island sounds interesting and have successfully attracted many people. The place which has got many mysteries attached to its name is basically an island territory of British. This island of Bermuda is situated in North Atlantic Ocean. It’s pink sand beaches such as Elbow Beach and the Horse shoe bay of the island are few of the amazing tourist attractions on the island. Apart from that interactive Dolphin quest, maritime history at national Museum of Bermuda and Royal naval Dockyard complex are some other major tourist attractions. You will get to see a unique blend of British and American culture in Bermuda.

Bermuda is just not known for its tourist attraction and a gateway for holiday, but it is also a promising destination for opening an offshore company. If you are thinking why you should choose Bermuda as a destination for your offshore company then we have some very strong reasons in the support of the island.

Regulatory environment of the city is Robust yet flexible!

Any business who wants to grow leaps and bounds basically needs a fertile work environment in which the company can flourish. Mind my words, Bermuda has all the necessary ingredients letting your business to flourish and grow well. It has got a robust system for business. There are defined set of laws and rules leaving less scope for loop holes or business fraudulency. This in turns increases the work transparency creating positive work environment. These regulations are realistic and usually do not cause inconvenience to a new business starting in the vicinity. No matter how much the system is robust and realistic the added advantage of flexibility in the system is the icing on the cake. This flexibility in the regulations encourages people to come up with new and creative ideas and prosper along with the prosperity of the city.

Public and private sectors work hand in hand!

Second best reason for choosing Bermuda for the offshore company is close proximity between the public and the private sector. These sectors are not exclusive but work on mutual cooperation with each other. Both public and private sector provide necessary support, work force and infrastructure to one another. On one hand public sector creates the entire necessary infrastructure for growth and uniform operation of private sector, on the other hand private sector provide world class service and tools to the public sector.

Bermuda is a global insurance player!

The strength of Bermuda market can be judged by the number of insurance and reinsurance companies present in the state. It is leading player in the world of insurance and reinsurance companies. All the leading companies of the world have a head office or a branch office present in the state. The state has a strong market for the growth of the insurance and reinsurance segment. The presence of large number of insurance companies and growth of the sector has not slowed down by any means. Till date lot of new companies are cropping up in the vicinity foreseeing the bright future of insurance companies. There are large numbers of companies with secured financial ratings in the city and the number of such companies is also continuing to grow.

Professional infrastructure of the island is commendable!

Another reason why you can open an offshore company in Bermuda is the presence of strong professional infrastructure. Physical infrastructure in the form of roads, rail, office building and a good man power can be provided by many states and cities of Britain. But what makes Bermuda stand out of the league is the presence of strong professional infrastructure. Professional infrastructure basically refers to the presence of lawyers, doctors, chartered accountants, auditors, bankers, actuaries etc. in the city. Bermuda has ample of all these professional who can easily help you with all your financial and legal work in the business.

Strong legal system of the state!

Apart from offering a strong physical and professional infrastructure, Bermuda islands also have strong legal system to offer. The legal system of the state is based on common English laws and in case of any kind of disputes; final verdict will be reserved to jurisdiction of United Kingdom. When you start a venture in any city, state or the country, it is very important to understand and adhere to the local and national laws of the area. Since Bermuda has got some very simple set of rules, you can easily handle the legal matters of the offshore company on the island. For everything else you can always hire some of the best attorneys available in the town.

Stability and connectivity!

One of the major reasons why most of the companies prefer a set up in Bermuda island is its long history of political and social stability. Since a long time in the history of the island, it has not witnessed and king of social or political revolution. People of the island are making a decent living in a friendly and supportive environment. As such there has not been any major issue leading to economic or political trouble in the area. Apart from that Bermuda is well connected to all the major business centres of Britain and America. Commutation is not a problem if you are starting a set up in Bermuda Island. Another benefit is the time zone of the island. No matter in which part of the world your head office, branch office or the client is situated, you can easily make a voice or a video call to th person without disturbing yours or the client’s sleep. It is one hour ahead of Eastern Standard time while four hours behind the Greenwich mean time.

Tax neutrality is a boon!

There is no exaggeration of the fact that tax neutrality is a boon in Bermuda. The local laws and tax system do not levy heavy taxes on the capital gains in the state. Apart from that you do not have to pay heavy amounts on income and manufacturing goods.

Advantages of Bermuda for your offshore base

Bermuda, just by the name of it island sounds interesting and have successfully attracted many people. The place which has got many mysteries attached to its name is basically an island territory of British. This island of Bermuda is situated in North Atlantic Ocean. It’s pink sand beaches such as Elbow Beach and the Horse shoe bay of the island are few of the amazing tourist attractions on the island. Apart from that interactive Dolphin quest, maritime history at national Museum of Bermuda and Royal naval Dockyard complex are some other major tourist attractions. You will get to see a unique blend of British and American culture in Bermuda.

If you are thinking about why Bermuda for your off shore base, we can enlist many good reasons why you should. There are many advantages of living on an island such as Bermuda and some of them are discussed below!

Life in Bermuda will be almost like living in heavens!

All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. And when you get the opportunity to live and work in a place where work becomes play, then what else can you ask for. Bermuda is a beautiful cluster of islands with vast stretches of pink beaches. Waking up to a beautiful sun beyond the vast sea line will definitely energise you for the rest of the day. Weekend on beach with friends or family is definitely a fascinating idea. Whether you are family and kids’ person or a party type, Bermuda has something or other to offer to all. The best part is that you will not have to bear the honking and irritating city traffic as you would have tolerated in a busy city of America or England. Everything is peaceful yet promising in Bermuda.

Job permits in the city are easy!

When you are on a off shore assignment on the island, you need not worry about the job permits. Though a bit expensive, but you can easily get work permit or extension of work permit in Bermuda Islands. You will need to do your math and decide whether you wish to pay such huge work permit extension. Is it worth all the efforts? If you have good performance then your employer will happily pay for your job permit extension. So, unlike some other countries getting a work permit or extension of the work permit is not an issue in the state and you can easily settle or send employees for work to the island. But you cannot get the voting right or citizenship of the island until and unless you marry a Bermudian citizen and live with your spouse for at least ten years.

Good place to raise family and kids!

Another advantage of choosing Bermuda for your offshore company is that it is a good location for raising a family and the kids. Though, cost of living in the state is bit high, buy overall you can give a decent lifestyle to your wife and the kids as compared to other big cities of America and England. Kids will get to live in a peaceful environment with lot of prosperity and fertile work culture around. Apart from that there are many private and government schools in the state offering up to the mark education to the kids. In short, childhood in Bermuda will be a healthy and nurturing experience for the kids. You will also get to socialise with other families of the same or different nationalities in the state. Overall it is a good family place to live with spouse and kids.

Political and economic stability!

All of us want to give a stable and peaceful lifestyle to our family. Not many of us will want to thrive in war prone regions or start a set up in areas of economic instability. If you are looking for a peaceful place where you can start your offshore company then Bermuda Island is a very good option available for you. In last so many years, Bermuda Island has not witnessed any kind of political or economic revolts. It is an economically stable place witnessing economic development at a very good pace. There are many companies in the state with high financial rankings and these numbers are on a constant increase. Overall starting an offshore company in Bermuda is a safe bet.

Fertile environment for business development and growth!

Another advantage that encourages many to start a setup in Bermuda Islands is presence of fertile business environment. Robust and realistic business regulations in the city not only define the border for the business men but it also increased the transparency in the business and chances of any kind of fraudulency decreases by many folds. Realistic yet flexible regulations further create scope for business development and innovation. It is this flexibility in the defined system that attracts many businessmen to start an offshore company in the vicinity. Almost every small and big insurance and reinsurance company has their presence in Bermuda Island and it is the proof of supportive business environment in the state.

You don’t have to go out anywhere for entertainment when you are living in Bermuda!

Bermuda can be un opposing counted as one of the best places which offer world class entertainment. You will definitely create memories to be cherished for the life on the beautiful beaches and exquisite restaurants of the state. Entertainment is not very expensive as compared to some of the crème restaurants of England, America, and Paris etc. Though, it can neither be counted as reasonable but it will definitely be worth of all the money spent over it. There are n numbers of entertainment options available in the city. Whether you want to go dining with kids or looking for a romantic gateway or just want to chill out with friends, Bermuda has an option for all. There are many cultural dance and art shows organised in the city on regular basis. If you are an art lover then it is a very good option for you.