Rivermate | Cayman Islands flag

Cayman Islands

Working Hours and Overtime Regulations

Understand the laws governing work hours and overtime in Cayman Islands

Standard working hours

The Cayman Islands' Labour Law establishes guidelines for standard working hours within the territory. The standard work week in the Cayman Islands is set at 45 hours, spread over five days. This translates to a typical workday of nine hours.

While a specific Cayman Islands legal document isn't publicly available online, reputable sources such as Global Expansion reference these regulations.

The standard workday in the Cayman Islands is nine hours. However, there's no legal restriction on how these nine hours are distributed throughout the day.

Employers might deviate from the nine-hour standard through individual employment agreements or collective bargaining agreements.


In the Cayman Islands, the Labour Law outlines the regulations for overtime work and the corresponding compensation for employees.

An employee is eligible for overtime pay when their work hours exceed the standard work week of 45 hours or the standard workday of nine hours.

The law mandates that overtime work must be compensated at a rate of time and a half the employee's basic hourly rate. For instance, if an employee's base hourly rate is KYD 10 (Cayman Islands Dollar), their overtime rate would be KYD 15 (KYD 10 x 1.5).

The Labour Law doesn't specify a maximum number of overtime hours that can be mandated. However, employers should prioritize employee well-being and avoid excessive overtime that could lead to fatigue or burnout.

Employment contracts can include provisions for time off in lieu of overtime pay. This means employees would accrue additional paid time off for working overtime hours, instead of receiving the time-and-a-half pay rate. However, the Labour Law requires that any agreement for time off in lieu must be written and clearly outline the terms of the arrangement.

The Labour Law exempts some categories of employees from receiving overtime pay. These exemptions may include domestic workers employed in private households and certain employees in essential services. Specific details on exemptions for essential services might be outlined in separate regulations.

Rest periods and breaks

In the Cayman Islands, the Labour Law doesn't explicitly mandate specific breaks within the workday for most employees. However, there are some regulations and considerations to be aware of:

The Labour Law requires a minimum rest period of eight consecutive hours between work shifts. This ensures adequate recovery time for employees before returning to work.

There's no legal requirement for employers to provide breaks during the workday in the Cayman Islands. Break times are typically determined by:

  • Company Policy: Many employers establish internal policies that include break periods throughout the workday. These breaks are often unpaid.
  • Industry Standards: Certain industries might have common practices regarding breaks, even in the absence of legal mandates.

While not mandated, it's generally considered good practice for employers to provide reasonable break periods throughout the workday to promote employee well-being and avoid fatigue.

Similar to workday breaks, there are no legal stipulations regarding meal breaks in Cayman Islands' Labour Law. Employers might include designated meal breaks within company policy, which could be paid or unpaid depending on the policy.

Night shift and weekend regulations

In the Cayman Islands, there are no specific regulations directly addressing night shift or weekend work under the Labour Law. However, there are some considerations for these schedules:

Night Shift:

Night shift workers typically adhere to a 45-hour workweek spread over five days, which translates to a typical night shift of nine hours. If night shift work extends beyond these standard hours, overtime pay regulations apply, which is time and a half the base salary. While there are no legal mandates regarding rest periods during night shifts, employers should prioritize creating a safe work environment that considers the potential impact of night work on employee well-being. This might involve breaks designated for napping or fatigue management strategies.

Weekend Work:

The minimum eight-hour rest period between work shifts also applies to weekend work. This ensures adequate recovery time before returning to work, even if shifts fall on weekends. Similar to weekdays, if weekend work exceeds the standard workweek or workday hours, employees are entitled to overtime pay.

General Considerations:

Some night or weekend work might involve shift rotations. While not mandated, predictable schedules can improve employee well-being compared to erratic scheduling. While not legally required, some employers might offer premium pay for night shifts or weekend work to incentivize employees. This can be negotiated within employment contracts.

Rivermate | A 3d rendering of earth

Hire your employees globally with confidence

We're here to help you on your global hiring journey.