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Memorandum: Purchase of Property and Discrimination

The Student Chapter's 2012 Summer Research Project was on the topic of "Purchase of Property and Discrimination", a jurisdictional comparison between the Cayman Islands, the Channel Islands, Bermuda and the United Kingdom.

The Memorandum was written by the Student Chapter of the Caymanian Bar Association, which comprised of Alison Maxwell, Joe Jackson, Joni Ebanks and Michael Lockwood.


Presently in the Cayman Islands, under the Stamp Duty Law (2011 Revision), first time Caymanian buyers are exempt from paying stamp duty on the purchase of land -

(a) valued at $200,000 or less in the case of land with a building; and

(b) valued at $50,000 or less in the case of land without a building.

Save that the full stamp duty which is applicable on purchases of land in certain special areas of George Town and Seven Mile Beach.

The Cayman Islands Constitution Order 2009 expressly provides a defence under section 16(1) for persons against discriminatory measures adopted by the government or a public official pertaining to treatment of an individual, namely, with respect to rights granted to them under the Constitution. The defence is subject to whether the legislation or the decision acquiesced to has objective and reasonable justification. Also taken into consideration is the proportionality to its aims in the interests of defence, public safety, public order, public morality or public health. Under section 16(2) "Discriminatory" means affording different and unjustifiable treatment to different persons on any ground such as sex, race, colour, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, association with a national minority, age, mental or physical disability, property, birth or other status."

Before the recently enacted Gender Equality Law 2011, forms of protection provided for nondiscrimination were lacking. The Constitution Order 2009 possesses a much wider span to provide more of a blanket approach, tailored against discrimination for an increasingly diverse range of social groups ...

Download the full Memorandum below.

DOWNLOAD Published on December 17, 2012.