Let the buyer beware

If you are thinking about buying property in Jamaica then you are about to embark upon a major investment.  A potential investment in property requires careful consideration because of the risks involved. You want to ensure that you are fully satisfied with the property you are purchasing so you do not become the victim of […]

Recognizing the Value of Innovation in our Laws

There are few business leaders that doubt that innovation is important to the continued success of a business. It may be that the number of definitions of “innovation” may rival the number of those business leaders; but one definition that seems useful for the current purpose is that innovation is the successful exploitation of new […]

How can we expedite Real Estate Transactions?

The Junior Minister in the Ministry of Finance and Public Service Fayval Williams commented at a seminar hosted by Sterling Assets Management on the 23rd June, 2016 that Jamaica is rated 186 out of 226 countries in the time it takes to complete a Real Estate Transaction. New Zealand is rated number 1. Jamaica’s relative […]

The Special Economic Zone – A Remix of the Free Zone?

Is a free zone by another name still a free zone? The Special Economic Zones Act (the SEZ Act), which came into force on August 1, 2016, has repealed the Jamaica Export Free Zones Act (the JEFZ Act). The SEZ Act provides for the designation, promotion, development, operation and management of Special Economic Zones (SEZs), […]

Private/Public Partnerships: What Does It Mean to You?

In recent times, much has been said by Government on both sides of the political divide about Public/Private Partnerships. This is a very nice sounding term, but what does it mean? Dealings with “Government” can take many forms and involve numerous pitfalls for the unwary. “Government” can broadly be divided between central Government and statutory […]

Cannabis Licensing: 7 Tips for the Would-be Applicant

Following the recent reforms of the laws related to cannabis, many persons may be wondering how to participate in the legal cannabis industry. The Cannabis Licensing Authority (“CLA”) was established in 2015 by the Dangerous Drug (Amendment) Act, to among other things, issue licences for cultivation, processing, retail sale, transportation and research of legal ganja […]

NATURAL JUSTICE: The Bane of an Employer’s Existence

This year, the Court of Appeal delivered a critical decision in National Commercial Bank v Industrial Disputes Tribunal & Peter Jennings [2016] JMCA Civ 24, which may have been largely unnoticed by stakeholders in the employment sector. The Court upheld the Industrial Disputes Tribunal (“IDT”) ruling which found that the National Commercial Bank (“NCB”) had unjustifiably dismissed […]

Charities Act a Step in The Right Direction

The Charities Act, 2013, has been subject to some criticism. For example, in a recent newspaper article, I saw it mentioned in passing as an example of “archaic legislation … which out of a need for more taxes has done more harm than good.” As an attorney that represents a number of charities, I thought […]

The Searchable NSIPP Registry – The Way Forward

The shock and outrage at the personal information that was visible on a public search of the online National Security Interests in Personal Property Registry (NSIPP Registry) dominated recent media headlines, notably the Gleaner’s article dated February 15, 2015. The indignation generated was such that the Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Anthony Hylton, […]

Security for Costs: Protecting the Interests of a Defendant

“Costs follow the event” is a general rule often heard in the Courts which means that an unsuccessful party in legal proceedings is to pay the legal costs of the successful party. However, a successful party may find it difficult to retrieve his costs where, for instance, the unsuccessful party resides outside the jurisdiction or […]

2013 Business Law Year-In-Review

This article provides a recap of the major laws passed last year affecting businesses in Jamaica. Possibly the most topical legislative change has been the new Omnibus Tax Regime. For years both local and foreign investors have argued that taxation and the general business climate in Jamaica did not encourage investment which would generate growth. […]

Minimum Business Tax in Name and Nature

Sometimes the literal interpretation is the correct one. The Minimum Business Tax (MBT) that took effect in April this year is not a tax that depends on the income, sales or assets of a business. It is payable whether or not the business has any assets, has made a profit or is even trading.  It […]