Relocation Assistance Scheme
The relocation assistance scheme for new appointments is not a contractual benefit. The University will exercise its discretion whether to offer relocation assistance to new appointments. Where relocation assistance is offered, this will be detailed in the letter of appointment.
All members of staff are expected to live in a location compatible with the fulfilment of their duties.
When you have moved, you should amend your new home address and telephone number in the Trent HR Self Service system.
Who is eligible?
A successful applicant to a post paid on grades E and above who lives more than an hour away from their University work location (as notified in their letter of appointment) may be offered assistance with their relocation to an address significantly closer to their University work location. If relocation assistance is offered to you, this will be stated in your letter of appointment.
Staff taking up an offer of relocation assistance will normally be expected to move to an address that is within 30 miles and 45 minutes commuting time of their University work location. Exceptions to this must be agreed in advance (in writing) with the College Dean/Head of Service and the Director of Human Resources.
How much can I claim?
The maximum sum which can be claimed in respect of relocation assistance will be specified in the letter of appointment. There will be a lower rate of assistance for short-term appointments. New employees to appointments for an initial fixed term of up to and including one year are not eligible for relocation assistance.
|Length of contract||Amount of relocation assistance|
|Fixed term of up to and including one year||not eligible|
|Fixed term of more than one year and up to and including two years||5% of annual starting salary|
|Fixed term of more than two years and up to and including three years||7.5% of annual starting salary|
|Open-ended or for fixed term of more than three years||10% of annual starting salary or £8,000 (whichever is the lower)|
What kinds of expenses can I claim?
The University anticipates that relocation expenses reimbursed will fall within the categories which HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) allows to be paid without a charge to tax. It is therefore expected that this assistance will contribute to the following expenses:
- the cost of the removal of household effects, including books, to the employee’s new home*.
- in the case of appointees from overseas, one adult economy fare from the appointee’s place of residence.
- the costs of storage (where it is not possible for the employee to move immediately into their new home);
- legal and estate agent fees connected with the sale and purchase of residence;
- survey fee on the property which is finally purchased;
- the disconnection and reconnection of appliances, including telephone installation/transfer charges;
- relaying carpets. (Note: HMRC will not permit any expenses relating to new carpets.)
(This is only a brief summary of the expenses which are covered by HM Revenue & Customs regulations: you should read the Relocation FAQ and contact Human Resources for clarification before submitting your claim.)
How do I make a claim?
To meet HM Revenue & Customs regulations, which allow the payment of relocation expenses without taxation being incurred, all claims for payment must be accompanied by proof of expenditure (ie receipt).
You should contact the Finance Office in your College/Service for the correct finance code which you should use when submitting your claims.
While you have discretion over which removal firm to use, you should note that the University’s preferred supplier, Hackworthy and Sons, offer a 10% discount for University of Exeter staff on domestic removals. You will need to contact Hackworthy and Sons direct to book a pre-move survey and state at the outset that you are employed by the University of Exeter University (and present on request a valid staff card) so that Hackworthy and Sons can apply the discount to the quotation. Contact 01752 228815 (www.hackworthy.co.uk). It may be possible for the invoice to be charged direct to the University (although it will still count against your relocation allowance) - you should speak to the Finance Team in your College/Service about this, so that they can issue a purchase order against your quotation.
Is there a time limit for submitting claims?
HM Revenue & Customs rules require that the sum has to be claimed by the end of the tax year following the commencement of your new appointment.
- new employee A commences employment on 1 July 2013: they must submit their final claim by the end of the 2014/15 tax year, ie 5 April 2015.
- new employee B commences employment on 1 March 2014: they must submit their final claim by the end of the 2014/15 tax year, ie 5 April 2015.
In exceptional circumstances, the Director of Human Resources may agree that Relocation Expenses can be claimed outside of the above HMRC guidance, but they will be subject to tax deductions. In these instances, your College/Service should should be sent the approved claims direct to the Employee Services Team Leader in HR Services for processing.
Application to couples
The HM Revenue & Customs rules also restrict the allowance to the move of one home. Consequently, where a couple (whether married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting) are both appointed to positions at the University, only one will be entitled to relocation assistance under this scheme. Where this applies, the new appointees should confirm with HR Services which partner is covered by this scheme.
What if I decide to leave the employment of the University?
In view of the significant costs involved in providing relocation assistance any member of staff who resigns from their post within the first three years of commencing their appointment will be required to repay a percentage of the money that they have received according to the following scale:
- Resignation during first year: 75%
- Resignation within second year: 50%
- Resignation within third year: 25%
The sum must be repaid to the University no later than the final day of employment and will be deducted from their final salary payment. (Should this be insufficient to cover the outstanding debt the individual will reimburse the University immediately by some other means acceptable to the University).