Author: Jennifer Haworth

Jennifer Haworth
In March 2013, the Chief Justice issued a decision in the case of Kentucky Fried Chicken (Bermuda) Ltd v Minister of Economy Trade & Industry and the Bermuda Industrial Union [2013] Bda LR 19 (381 KB PDF). Kentucky Fried Chicken (Bermuda) Ltd. (“KFC”) sought judicial review of the Minister of Economy Trade & Industry’s (the “Minister”) decision to refer KFC’s dispute with the Bermuda Industrial Union (“BIU”) to binding adjudication under the Trade Disputes Act 1992 (the “Act”). The Chief Justice refused KFC’s application citing the Court’s limited ability to review such references and only in “extreme cases”.

Jennifer Haworth
If you are a business owner, you will no doubt be focused largely on your target customers and how best to market and sell your products or services to them, while keeping costs at a minimum, especially in this economic climate. An important piece of advice we give is not to cut corners when it comes to your employees. Well drafted contracts of employment and employee handbooks are critical in safeguarding your business. Money set aside for legal services in this area will be well spent, especially if an issue or dispute arises. In our experience, one of the biggest concerns, especially with small businesses, can be the lack of a written employment contract. This presents difficulty to employers on two levels. First, it is a violation of the Employment Act 2000 (the “Act”) (130 KB PDF) which requires all employers to provide their employees with a Statement of Employment. Second, in the event of a dispute, the lack of clear, written terms leads to “he said, she said” situations, making it more difficult to prove matters one way or the other.

Jennifer Haworth
Two recent announcements demonstrate that Bermuda has an important role to play in the global insurance market and is seeing growth in 2013. The Bermuda Monetary Authority (“BMA”) presented figures for the period ending July 2013 in which 47 new insurers were registered. This represents an 81% increase on last year which saw 26 new insurers registered. Interestingly, 13 of those new registrations came in the month of July alone. The BMA has indicated that the new registrations were predominantly special purpose insurers (“SPIs”). For 7 of the registered SPIs, their total projected premiums in their first year of business are expected to be over $151 million. The new registrations will cover a broad range of business areas including property catastrophe reinsurance, catastrophe bonds and life and annuity. It was also noted that the number of captives in Bermuda remains steady and has done so for the last three years. Contrary to the suggestions that captives are re-domiciling onshore, this has not been the case in Bermuda.

Jennifer Haworth
Bermuda’s new One Bermuda Alliance Government has scrapped the “Measures to Inhibit Long-Term Residency” policy, more commonly known as the term limit policy, and undertaken a review of the Islands’ work permit policy, all with a view to encouraging economic growth and job opportunities for Bermudians. The initial announcement came on 30 January 2013 from Home Affairs Minister Michael Fahy who called the term limit policy a “barrier to job creation”. Government has also sought to reassure Bermudians that doing away with term limits will not negatively impact their job opportunities given that the work permit policy remains in place. Bermuda’s work permit policy requires that when the renewal of a guest worker’s permit is sought, the position must be advertised giving qualified Bermudians an opportunity to apply. In addition, Government indicated that it sought legal advice to reaffirm advice already received by the previous Progressive Labour Party Government which confirmed that the term limit policy is not necessary to prevent long term residency.