(CMR) Donovan Chambers of Jamaica recently reached out to Cayman Marl Road to share his five-year ordeal of attempting to get his outstanding pension money paid from a company owned by Government Minister Dwayne Seymour (BTE).
Chambers left the Cayman Islands five years ago after working for APS Ltd. – a company that operates out of Owen Roberts International Airport – offering security services for the airport. Chambers began his employment in April 2005. CMR requested and was provided proof of Chamber's tenure on the island as well as confirmation that he worked for APS.
Chambers explained during an interview on The Cold Hard Truth that he worked for the company for nine years until he was rolled over in November 2014. Upon leaving, he attempted to follow up with the company, which he realized was missing pension funds. It appears his pension money was removed from his paycheque but was never made into a fund at all. However, he was never able to make any headway with them.
He then reached out to the labor and pensions office and made some contact with Mr. Charles Best, Senior Pensions Officer. In an email from May 2017, Best explains that they were already in contact with that particular employer about other labor/pension matters, but Chamber's name did “not come up in any of these talks or documentations.” Best wrote:
“I am actually in talks with the business in relation to certain matters. At no time has your name come up in any of these talks or documentation. Question is, did you know that pensions were not being paid being employed from 2005, and if so what was done? I have sent an email to the employer in relation to this and awaiting a response.”May 12, 2017
I have attached a complaint form that you have to fill out and return to our office with a scanned copy of a picture ID which could be a driver's license or your passport picture place with your face clearly visible for recognition purposes.
Looking forward to hearing from you with my queries and instructions.
It appears that the company was already being investigated by that office at the time. In June 2017, Chambers followed up once more with Mr. Best and was informed that he had “hundreds of other” matters he was dealing with. He also stated that they needed the corporation of the employer in order to proceed.
“Donavan I am looking into the matter as well as hundreds of others. Any way forward depends on several factors, one of which is the cooperation of the employer, and calculating what was owed in the absence of records. This will take time and I hope you appreciate and respect the procedure that has to be undertaken. As I mentioned before, to most of your claim is out of time so I cannot take Summary court proceedings for recovery.”
At that point, nothing further was done and the proverbial ball appears to have been dropped yet again. Frustrated, Chambers then reached out to Cayman New Service but claims he received a less than helpful response that because Dwayne Seymour was a minister, Wendy Ledger was unable to assist him.
Becoming increasingly frustrated, Chambers was referred to Cayman Marl Road by a friend. He shared that his friend informed him:
“This is the lady to get things done and she will help you get to the bottom of this and recover your money; she will not give up.”
Chambers reached out to CMR in early August and was featured on last week's The Cold Hard Truth, our bi-weekly live podcast show.
Shortly after reaching out to us; Best made contact with Chambers again after over two years of silence on August 21, 2019. The timing of this latest correspondence is interesting, given CMR mentioned the pending expose on the minister.
Nonchalantly, Best opened his email with “sorry for the delay” with no real explanation as to why 27 months had passed since his last email.
Coincidentally, this time around, the man who had no previous record could now be told that he was paid the precise amount of C.I.$2802.40 when he left the Cayman Islands. The email read:
“Sorry about the delay. I am trying to ascertain if, before you left the island, an agreement on payment of some funds was made and KYD $2802.40 was paid to you. This is in order to come to a final figure which has been calculated. Please advise. Also, I am trying to get the enrollment form to scan for you as no funds can be paid until registration occurs.”
He then informs him that he needs to complete an enrollment form. Chambers shared on the program that he had already filled out an enrollment form at the time of his employment back in 2005.
During the show, Chambers explained that he felt that Seymour was an honorable and trustworthy man as he was always around checking on staff. He appeared to be genuinely concerned and wanted to shake the hands of employees.
This tactic appeared to have worked on Chambers initially. However, he has since had a change of heart and has shared that the minister is not a man of his word.
Chambers has not heard from Best. However, after the show aired, local pension administrator Britcay reached out to Chambers, asking him to once again complete the pension registration form – some five years after leaving the Cayman Islands. Chambers is uncertain about how they obtained his contact details but suspects the Labour and Pension office provided it to them.
Chambers is now working towards what he hopes will be the final resolution to this matter. CMR continues to assist him to ensure no one else drops the ball this time around.
We have had several persons since this program reached out about missing pension payments. If anyone requires CMR's assistance with rogue employers, please contact us via email.