Policy Directory

RELOCATION ASSISTANCE GUIDELINES

Date approved

24 July 2007

Date Guidelines will take effect:

24 July 2007

Date of Next Review:

October 2013

Approved by

Administrative Committee

Custodian title & e-mail address

Recruitment Manager
hr_staff@uow.edu.au

Author

Recruitment Manager, Human Resources Division

Responsible Faculty/Division/Unit

Recruitment Unit, Human Resources Division

Supporting documents, procedures & forms of these guidelines

 

References & Legislation

Recruitment & Selection Policy

Audience

Public – accessible to anyone

Expiry Date of Guidelines

Not Applicable

Contents

1 Purpose of Guidelines

  • 1. The University’s recruitment strategies are focused on attracting and recruiting the highest quality candidates from the region, across Australia and internationally. UOW will continue to source candidates from a wide field, interstate and internationally. Relocation assistance is an integral part of UOW’s candidate care and recruitment process.
  • 2. The aim of these Guidelines is to provide a guide on the use of relocation assistance. Given the competitiveness of the recruitment market, there is a need for flexibility in what candidates are offered and how UOW can ensure that their relocation to Wollongong is as smooth as possible.

2 Definitions

Word/Term

Definition

Dependant(s)

A dependant will include the following persons:

    • Spouse (including de-facto spouse); and

    • Children of the appointee who will be living at the appointees’ residence and are wholly or substantially reliant on the appointee for financial support and basic needs.

Eligible Expenses

Eligible expenses are those expenses directly associated with the travel of the appointee and dependants to take up residence in the region and the removal of personal, professional and household effects. It may also cover expenses directly incurred as a part of the initial “set-up” costs of living in the region.

Personal and Household Effects

Personal (and household effects) include those possessions that belong to the appointee and their dependant(s) which require removal because they are necessary to re-establish a household. Personal and household effects generally do not include items such as boats, caravans, motor vehicles etc.

Professional Effects

Professional effects are items that belong to the appointee which require removal as they are necessary to maintain the appointee’s work and professional development. These typically include a library, computer, research equipment etc.

Minimum appointment period

The minimum appointment period for eligibility for relocation assistance is normally three years.

Illawarra Region

The Illawarra Region is defined as the region encompassing the five local government areas of Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama, Shoalhaven and Wingecarribee.

Relocation

Relocation is defined as the requirement for an appointee to move from their place of permanent residence which is outside of the relevant region, to a new place of permanent residence within the Illawarra or relevant region, in order to take up an appointment with UOW. This will normally include appointees recruited from overseas or from parts of Australia not reasonably accessible to the respective University’s campus to which they are appointed on a daily basis (normally considered to be outside of a 80 km radius) and where the appointee relocates to within a 50 km radius of the University’s campus on which their position is based at the time of appointment.

3 Application & Scope

Not Available.

4 Eligibility

  • 1. Relocation assistance, in accordance with clause 7.5 below, may be offered to an appointee at the discretion of the Dean or Director of the Faculty / Division making the appointment. The offer of relocation assistance is dependant upon the availability of funds, the term of the contract, the level of the position, the strategic importance of the position, the particular specialist skills and attributes the individual brings to the University and the availability of local candidates. It is not a universal entitlement.
  • 2. The relocation assistance amount offered, and any conditions pertaining to it, will normally be outlined in the candidate’s letter of offer. Appointments being made under an externally funded research grant may be eligible to relocation assistance but subject to the conditions of the grant.

5 Claimable Relocation Expenses

  • 1. UOW recognises that candidates would have different relocation needs due to location and personal circumstances. It is recommended that a total amount be offered to the appointee to relocate in a manner most suitable to their needs. The relocation assistance amount offered may be used for the items outlined below:
        • a. removal of personal, professional and/or household effects, including any insurance costs;
        • b. storage of personal, professional and/or household effects for an interim period normally not exceeding six (6) months;
        • c. temporary accommodation in the Wollongong / Illawarra region for up to a maximum of two (2) months;
        • d. transport costs from existing place of residence to the Illawarra or relevant region normally limited to: economy class airfare(s) for the appointee and their dependant(s) via the most direct route from the place of residence; car hire; and transfers from airport to their new place of residence;
        • e. costs directly incurred to set up the place of residence including connection of utilities and purchase of essential household items to a value less than $300 (and in accordance with minor benefit provision of Fringe Benefits Tax provisions). visa application fees and any other fees associated with applying for and obtaining a relevant visa, subject to clause 7 below; and
        • f. where the appointee decides to make the relocation journey via motor vehicle, the appointee may claim any accommodation, meals, petrol, tolls and other travel-related costs incurred during the one-way journey.
        • g. the cost of return travel for the appointee and their dependants from Australia to their country of residence or another location.
  • 2. Generally items subject to fringe benefits tax (FBT) will not be included as an item claimable under relocation assistance. This exclusion includes items considered essential household items such as whitegoods. If the University does reimburse an appointee for relocation expenses which are subject to FBT then the value of the tax will be included as part of the University’s agreed contribution towards their relocation expenses as stated in the offer of appointment. In addition the provision of a fringe benefit may result in a reportable fringe benefit on the employees group certificate. Applicants for relocation assistance are encouraged to seek independent financial advice in relation to FBT.

6 Payment of Relocation Claims

  • 1. Relocation assistance will be paid as a reimbursement once the appointee has commenced their employment with UOW. If the costs claimed do not reach the total amount offered, the balance will not be given as a credit to the appointee.
  • 2. Original receipts of expenses incurred must be provided to either the Recruitment Unit or Staff Services, who will organise reimbursement into the appointees’ nominated Australian bank account, in accordance with the relocation assistance amount offered.
  • 3. In some instances, it may be possible for UOW to pay for some expenses directly prior to the appointee commencing their appointment. Such requests are to be made to the Dean / Director of the Faculty / Division, through the Recruitment Unit, prior to incurring such expenses.
  • 4. Where a currency conversion is required, the relevant rate at the date of payment will be used.

7 Immigration & Claimable Accounts

Visa Application Costs

  • 1. Where an appointee is required to apply for a relevant visa to allow them to commence employment in the position being offered, UOW will make the relevant nomination application to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship. The cost of this nomination application will be covered by the relevant Faculty / Division.
  • 2. All other costs relating to the visa application (such as medical examinations, police checks, visa application fees etc) will be the responsibility of the appointee unless otherwise agreed with the Dean or Director of the relevant Faculty / Division.

Medical Insurance Coverage for Temporary Residents

  • 3. A condition of an appointee obtaining a temporary residency visa (such as a sub-class 457 visa) is that the appointee and their dependant(s) must obtain and hold comprehensive health insurance coverage applicable to temporary residents with either IMAN International Pty Ltd or an equivalent level of cover with an alternate supplier for the duration of their visa. This cover must include medical repatriation. Should an appointee seek to purchase insurance with an alternate supplier, the Recruitment Unit is to advise on the appropriateness of the cover to be purchased.
  • 4. The cost of this medical insurance is the responsibility of the appointee, who is obliged to maintain this cover as a condition of the appointment, for the term of the contract, or until they become a permanent resident, whichever is the sooner. The appointee will be required to provide evidence of appropriate coverage prior to their commencement and at other times during the term of the appointment, where necessary.

Schedule of Relocation Assistance Amounts

  • 5. Where the Dean / Director of the relevant Faculty / Division approves an offer of relocation assistance, the offer of relocation assistance made to an appointee will be guided by the amounts listed below. Actual amounts offered may be higher or lower than the amounts listed below. Any variation of a higher amount must be approved either by the Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Teaching and Research staff appointments, by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) for Research Only staff appointments or the Vice Principal (Administration) for General Staff appointments. Any such variation must be notified to the Recruitment Unit or Staff Services in writing. Where a variation to the amounts listed below is requested, consideration will be given to the level of the appointment and the strategic importance of the role as noted in clause 4.

Zone

Appointee Only

With Dependants

A - NSW, ACT (i.e. outside the Illawarra or relevant region and required to relocate)

up to $1,500

up to $3,000

B - Western NSW: Far North NSW: VIC: Eastern / Central QLD

up to $2,500

up to $5,000

C - TAS: SA: Far North QLD

up to $3,500

up to $6,000

D - WA: NT

up to $5,000

up to $7,000

E - New Zealand: The Pacific: Asia

up to $8,000

up to $12,000

F - United Kingdom: Europe: North America: South America

up to $10,000

up to $14,000

  • 6. The amounts specified above are quoted in Australian Dollars.

8 Time Limit for Reimbursement of Relocation Claims

  • 1. All requests for payment must be submitted within twelve (12) months from date of commencement. Any extension or variation is subject to approval by the Dean / Director of the relevant Faculty / Division.
  • 2. Staff Services must be notified in writing of any such variations.

9 Separation from UOW

  • 1. If an appointee resigns within the first half of their contract (for fixed term contracts) or within three years (for appointments that are of five years' duration or more) the appointee will be required to repay a proportionate amount of the total relocation assistance provided by the University. The amount to be repaid will be calculated as follows:
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  • 2. The minimum appointment period is normally three years or the length of the appointment, whichever is the lesser.
  • 3. An appointee may apply to the Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Academic Staff appointments and the Vice Principal (Administration) for General Staff appointments to waive all or part of the refund where it is clearly demonstrated that the separation was due to pressing domestic circumstances beyond the control of the appointee.

10 Roles & Responsibilities

Position

Responsibility

New Appointee

Notify Recruitment of acceptance of offer
Advise Recruitment of details of persons relocating
Contact suppliers to arrange relocation quotations
Arrange initial accommodation (if necessary) – Recruiter may provide advice and assistance in this regard if required
Provide proof of payment for claim (i.e. copy of relevant invoices and proof of payment) to Recruitment/Staff Services for reimbursement within 12 months from date of commencement
If an appointee seeks to purchase health insurance with an alternate supplier to IMAN, appointee must provide information to Recruitment regarding the appropriateness of the alternate cover to be purchased

Recruitment

Identify and communicate appropriate relocation allowance to new appointee
Provide advice to new appointee in relation to relocation guidelines and its use/interpretation
Organise reimbursement after new appointee has commenced (this will either be organised by Recruitment or Staff Services)

Dean / Director of relevant Faculty / Division

Advise Recruitment of the appropriate relocation assistance amount, if any, to be offered to the new appointee
To provide justification for higher relocation assistance amount

Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor & Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research)

Vice Principal (Administration)

To approve or decline any request for variation to a higher relocation assistance amount than the amounts listed in clause 7.5 above.

11 Version Control Table

Version Control

Date Effective

Approved By

Amendment

1

24 July 2007

Administrative Committee

New version

2

6 May 2009

Vice Principal (Administration)

Migrated to UOW Procedure Template as per Policy Refresh

3

9 March 2010

Recruitment Manager

Future review date identified in accordance with Standard on UOW Policy.

4

26 August 2010

Vice-Principal (Administration)

Updated to reflect divisional name change from Personnel Services to Human Resources Division

5

14 October 2010

Director, Human Resources

Minor amendments:

• addition of clause 5.1 (h)

• changes to Section 7 lmmigration & Claimable Accounts

• removal of Section 10 Repatriation to reflect legislative changes.

6

12 April 2011

Actg Snr Mgr, Policy & Governance

Updated to reflect DVC(O) title change

7

23 May 2012

Senior Deputy Vice Chancellor (Operations)

Updated to remove rental bond and expenses subject to FBT from claimable expenses Removal of reference to automatic CPI adjustment to relocation assistance amounts

Last reviewed: 24 May, 2012

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