Cayman Islands Ship Registry Adds Crew Contract Requirement

18 March 2024 By Staff Report
cayman islands flag on yacht
Credit: Adobe Stock

In Merchant Shipping Act 2024 published on March 11, the Cayman Islands Ship Registry (CISR) has a new requirement for all Cayman Island-flagged yachts, including private and pleasure vessels, to have written contracts for all crew members — a first in yachting. The employment agreement must be signed by the crew member and by (or on behalf of) the employer.

Stated in section 90, the minimum that needs to be included in the agreement is: 

  • the amount of wages and method of payment; 
  • the production of monthly wage accounts; 
  • any wage deductions permitted by this Act; 
  • entitlement to repatriation and medical expenses; 
  • entitlement to leave; 
  • notice period required; 
  • the agreed place for the return of the seafarer; and 
  • the governing law.

The guidance notice from March 12 states that no right or obligation under MSA 2024 can be renounced by an employment contract, and this requirement does not suggest any additional entitlements to crew but entitlements must now be included in the contract. The CISR won’t be checking individual contracts but will conduct surveys and verify compliance.


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