Human Resources

University Policy on Relocation Expenses

Policy No.
UP07/181
Function
Human Resources
Authoring Organisational Unit
HR Services - Human Resources
Date Approved
01/01/2007 Revised 07/12/2015
Next Review Date
07/12/2017
Approving Body
Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor And Registrar

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The University of Western Australia

University Policy on: Relocation Expenses

Purpose of the policy and summary of issues it addresses:

This policy outlines the relocation assistance given to new appointees who are required to relocate to take up their appointment. It includes details of travel and removal entitlements and eligibility criteria for this assistance.

Definitions:

"Dependents" means a child under 18 years old who is not a student or a student under 25 who is studying full time at school, college or university or any other person approved by the University who lives with and who is fully or substantially dependent on the new appointee.

"Incidentals" means an occasional or minor expense.

"Employee" means a person employed by the University who has an ongoing or fixed term contract under the terms of the following Agreements (as amended or replaced from time to time): Professional & General Staff Agreement and Academic Staff Agreement.

"New appointee" means person who has received an offer of employment from the University and is not currently employed with the University.

"Partner" means a person who is a spouse, de facto or same sex partner.

"Salary package" means an agreement between an employee and the University, where the employee agrees to give up part of their future salary or wages in return for the University providing benefits of a similar value. It is sometimes referred to as salary sacrifice.

"Settlement services" may include; meet and greet programme, destination/information pack, orientation tour, home search, and school search.

"Travel Service Providers" means the travel agent(s) as appointed and mandated for use by the University.

"University" means The University of Western Australia.

Policy statement:

Process Map - Relocation Process Map

The University aims to recruit the highest calibre of staff nationally and internationally. For new appointees who are required to relocate to take up their appointment, the University provides a range of relocation assistance services.

1 Eligibility

1.1 New appointees, who are required to relocate to take up their appointment at the University, are eligible for assistance with relocation expenses if they meet the following criteria:

  • they hold a professional, general or technical position at Level 6 or above OR they hold an academic position;
  • they hold an appointment of at least 12 months' duration (conditions apply, see Clause 2 below); and
  • their current home address is further than 100km from the University.

1.2 New appointees who believe their particular circumstances would cause them to be seriously disadvantaged by the limits imposed may make a written application to the Director, Human Resources for special consideration to have their removal allowance increased.

1.3 Any relocation expenses which are not provided for in this policy may be negotiated with the relevant School / Faculty / Centre for approval and payment.

1.4 A new appointee may salary package the actual costs associated with relocation, or the difference between the amount provided by this Policy and the total relocation expenses.

1.4.1 Examples of eligible costs include:

  • removal and storage of household effects;
  • certain costs associated with the sale or acquisition of a dwelling as a result of the relocation;
  • stamp duty (Australian residents only); and
  • costs associated with the connection and reconnection of certain utilities.

1.4.2 For further information of what costs may be salary packaged and the charges involved for accessing this service, please contact Employee Benefits (in Human Resources) or visit the What can be packaged website.

2 Summary of Entitlements

2.1 The actual assistance provided is set out under the various categories of appointment listed below.

Categories of Employment

Airfares/

Travel Expenses (Clause 3)

Removal

Expenses (Clause 4)

Transit Insurance (Clause 6)

Temporary Accomm (Clause 7)

Settlement Services (Clause 8)

Requirement to Repay (Clause 10)

Ongoing / Tenured and Tenurable

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Fixed Term appointment 2 years or more

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Fixed term appointment 1-2 years

From within Australia

Domestic standard economy class airfares only

International relocation with no dependants

Fixed allowance up to $5,411 to spend on standard economy class airfares, accommodation and/or removals etc.

International relocation with dependants

Up to $10,822 to spend on standard economy class airfares, accommodation and/or removals etc.

Fixed term appointment less than 1 year

Relocation expenses for appointments for less than one year will be at the discretion of the Director, Human Resources.

Research Funded Appointments

Some research funded appointments are given a discretionary amount to assist with their relocation. This may be used to pay for standard economy class airfares, accommodation or removal expenses. If approval for funding is given, new appointees must present original receipts to the work area for reimbursement.

3 Airfares/Travel Expenses

3.1 New appointees, whose relocation assistance includes airfares are, in the first instance, entitled to the actual cost of one-way economy class airfares for themselves, their partner and any dependants from the place of engagement to Perth (or other University work location such as Albany or Geraldton), noting that repatriation costs may apply (see Clause 5 below). All flights must be by the most direct and economical route available (normally standard economy class fare).

3.2 Travel bookings must be made directly with one of the University's appointed Travel Service Providers, thereby eliminating the need for the new appointee to outlay money and subsequently seek reimbursement.

3.3 Travel expenses (e.g. taxi or bus) to and from airports will also be reimbursed upon presentation of original receipts.

3.4 New appointees from within Australia may choose to travel by the most direct route by rail or road:

3.4.1 Rail - The University will reimburse, on presentation of receipts, up to the equivalent of the cost of standard economy class airfares for the new appointee, their partner and any dependants. Acceptable expenses include rail tickets, food, non-alcoholic drinks and incidentals purchased during the journey, and the cost of public transport used to get to the train station.

3.4.2 Road - The University will reimburse, on presentation of receipts, reasonable expenses incurred during the course of the journey, up to the equivalent of the cost of standard economy class airfares for the new appointee, their partner and any dependants. Reasonable expenses include petrol, overnight accommodation, food, non-alcoholic drinks and incidentals purchased as part of the journey.

4 Removal Expenses

4.1 The University requires all new appointees to use its preferred provider Grace Removals to handle all moves to Perth.

4.1.1 Where relocation assistance includes removal expenses, the University will pay costs (up to the limits specified below in subclause 4.2) from the place of engagement to Perth (or other University work location such as Albany or Geraldton). Costs may include packing, transportation, transit insurance, destination charges, delivery to residence and unpacking of ordinary/standard household goods and personal effects. It does not include transportation of unusual items, such as antiques, wine collections or pianos.

4.2 Volume Allowance:

Single Person:

allowable limit 15 cubic metres

New appointee with 1 dependant:

allowable limit 25 cubic metres

New appointee with 2 dependants:

allowable limit 30 cubic metres

New appointee with 3 or more dependants:

allowable limit 35 cubic metres

4.3 The payment of costs will not exceed the quotation for the allowable volume. If the consignment is larger than the allowable limit, the new appointee will be responsible for the cost of the additional volume. There may be exceptions to this ruling if approval is sought from and given by, the Faculty.

4.4 Essential professional items required for immediate use on or prior to commencement of duty may be transported as air freight at the time of travel, and must be included in the approved quoted relocation cost. If the value of any such item is in excess of $2,500, the new appointee will be responsible for the additional cost.

4.5 Removal expenses cannot be converted to a cash payment.

4.6 The new appointee can choose to use the amount from settlement services (see Clause 8) towards the cost of domestic pet (i.e. cats and dogs only) transportation (including applicable quarantine charges). If the cost of the pet transportation exceeds the overall amount of the settlement services, the new appointee must pay the difference.

4.7 If household goods and personal effects are required to be stored, the University will pay either:

  • 100% of storage costs for the first four weeks and 50% of storage costs for a further four weeks, or
  • 100% of storage costs for six weeks.

4.8 Motor vehicles - For domestic moves only, the University will pay the cost of the premium for transportation and insurance of one family motor vehicle.

5 Repatriation (457 Visa holders only)

5.1 The University is responsible for repatriating any new appointee who holds a 457 temporary residence visa following the end of their appointment.

5.2 Exceptions to this ruling are:

5.2.1 If the employee resigns prior to the end of their appointment, or their employment is terminated by the University, repatriation is at their own cost; or

5.2.2 If the employee obtains alternative work in Australia and a new visa is obtained with the new employer, the new employer becomes liable for their repatriation.

6 Transit Insurance

6.1 Transit (Marine) Insurance cover is provided for both sea and air freight by Grace Removals. Should the freight include fragile or valuable items (i.e. valued at over $2,500), the new appointee is responsible for advising Grace Removals.

6.2 In the event of a claim for loss or damage, the new appointee is responsible for payment of any excess.

6.3 Insurance Entitlements

Volume Allowance

Notional Insurance Value

DOMESTIC

15m3

$37,500

25m3

$62,500

30m3

$75,000

35m3

$87,500

INTERNATIONAL

15m3

$52,500

25m3

$87,500

30m3

$105,000

35m3

$122,500

7 Temporary Accommodation upon Arrival in Perth

7.1 Where relocation assistance includes temporary accommodation, the University will pay the cost of up to 1 week (7 days) accommodation prior to commencement at the University, plus either:

  • 100% of accommodation costs for four weeks and 50% of accommodation for another four weeks, or
  • 100% of accommodation costs for up to six weeks.

7.1.1 The new appointee is responsible for any accommodation costs incurred prior to 7 days before commencing at the University, (apart from those specified in subclause 7.4 below).

7.2 The new appointee will be contacted by the University, or Grace Removals, to arrange suitable accommodation on behalf of the University. Temporary accommodation may be in one of the University Colleges, a serviced apartment, hotel or motel.

7.3 There are implications of Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) for accommodation. Refer to the Fringe Benefits Tax Policy for furRefer to the Fringe Benefits Tax Policy for futher information. ther information.

7.4 Prior to Travel

7.4.1 If required, following removal of furniture and personal items, the University will pay the cost of up to 3 weeks (21 days) accommodation in the new appointee's home location prior to travel. This is in addition to accommodation paid in subclause 7.1 above.

7.4.2 The new appointee is responsible for the cost of any accommodation costs incurred prior to 21 days before commencing at the University.

8 Settlement Services

8.1 Where relocation assistance includes settlement services (refer to subclause 8.3 below), the University will pay the costs of the chosen service(s):

8.1.1 Maximum settlement service costs that may be paid:

Domestic

International

Single Person

$1200

$1500

New appointee with 1 dependant

$1500

$1800

New appointee with 2 dependants

$2000

$2300

New appointee with 3 or more dependants

$2500

$2800

8.2 The settlement service allowance cannot be converted to a cash payment.

8.3 Settlement services may include one or more of the services below, up to the dollar amounts listed in subclause 8.1.1:

8.3.1 Meet and Greet Programme

The new appointee is met at the airport and driven to their accommodation.

8.3.2 Destination / Information pack which may include:

  • Local street directory, city map, local events booklet
  • Living in Perth booklet, Public Transport maps
  • Banking information, utilities information etc.
  • Comprehensive information pack on city

8.3.3 Orientation Tour

  • Personal orientation tour for new appointee and partner/dependants based on their needs and interests including:
  • Overview of real estate, inspections of properties/schools
  • Recreational activities
  • Local lifestyle etc.

8.3.4 Home Search

  • 16 hours, 24 hours or 32 hours service
  • New appointees completes a survey to confirm needs
  • Research and a short-list of suitable properties compiled
  • New appointee is accompanied on inspections of selected properties
  • Assistance with rental application and lease signing or purchase process
  • Assistance with utility connections (television, internet, electricity etc.)

8.3.5 School Search

  • 4 hour or 8 hour service
  • New appointee completes a survey to confirm schooling needs
  • Personal Grace Removals consultant is introduced to family and provides information and advice on suitable schools
  • Written information/brochures/websites provided
  • Drive past or directions provided to visit school (depending on time)

9 Fixed Dollar Allowances

9.1 New appointees for more than 1 year but less than 2 years, whose relocation allowance is stipulated as a fixed dollar amount, may use these funds for return airfares and/or inbound or outbound removal of some personal effects. These amounts are typically fixed for a defined time period.

9.2 The new appointee will be responsible for any costs exceeding the fixed dollar allowance. Grace Removals will invoice the new appointee for the amount exceeding the agreed allowance and the new appointee will make the payment directly to Grace Removals.

9.3 Unused portions of fixed dollar allowances are not available as a cash payment.

9.4 Airfares must be arranged through the University appointed Travel Service Providers (see Clause 3) and removal of personal effects (if any) through Grace Removals (see Clause 4).

10 Requirement to Repay - Fixed Term for 2 years or more and Ongoing/Tenured and Tenurable Appointments

10.1 If, within the first two years of appointment, a new appointee resigns, or their employment is terminated by the University, they will be required to repay to the University, the travelling and/or relocation expenses paid on their behalf.

10.2 For research or externally funded appointments, the Faculty/School will determine if there will be a requirement to repay. If they wish to recover part of the relocation expenses paid to the new appointee, the Faculty/School will raise an invoice through Financial Services for recovery.

10.3 To calculate the amount required to be repaid, the following formula will apply:

Total relocation amount multiplied by the number of uncompleted months, divided by total number of months (i.e. 24).

For example:

$12,000 was paid for the relocation of a new appointee who resigns 18 months after commencing. This indicates that there are 6 months of uncompleted service. The calculation, therefore, would be ($12,000 x 6) / 24 = $3,000. The new appointee would, therefore, be required to repay $3,000.

10.4 The University will deduct the required amount from the new appointee's final payment. Where there are insufficient funds to cover the required amount, the new appointee will be invoiced directly, for the amount to be repaid. The University's normal invoicing and payment terms will apply.

Procedure

Grace Removals should be contacted for queries in relation to transit insurance on +61 (8) 9454 0956 or email info@grace.com.au.

Booking Airfares:

- New appointee confirms preferred travel dates and emails details, together with the full names and dates of birth for the people travelling, copies of passport(s) to the selected University appointed Travel Service Providers .

- University appointed Travel Service Providers plans the itinerary and emails it to new appointee for confirmation and sends copy to HR Recruitment Officer.

- Itinerary is approved by Human Resources following confirmation by new appointee

- University appointed Travel Service Providers invoices the University direct.

Arranging Removals / Initial Accommodation / Settlement Services:

When accepting the offer the new appointee is responsible for providing:

- Expected date of arrival.

- Names, gender, citizenship, age and date-of-birth of person(s) travelling.

- Copy of passport for all persons travelling.

- Period for which accommodation is required.

- Following acceptance of the offer, Human Resources will provide Grace Removals with the new appointee's relevant details.

- Grace Removals will then arrange a pre-move interview to assess the new appointee's needs and discuss move date, accommodation requirements and settlement services (where necessary).- Grace Removals are responsible for providing advice and assistance throughout the move and ensuring everything goes to plan.

- Once the removal is complete, Grace Removals will invoice the University for the pre-determined costs associated with the move. Additional expenses will be invoiced direct to the new appointee.

- A relocation survey following the move provides important feedback to the University regarding your experience.

RELOCATION EXPENSES BREAKDOWN OF RESPONSIBILITIES

Position

Responsibility

New Appointee

  • Notify HR Recruitment of acceptance of offer and start date.
  • Advise Human Resources of details (including citizenship) of persons travelling.
  • Contact the preferred Travel Service Provider to arrange flight plan.
  • Once contacted by Grace Removals, provide details of household removals, accommodation etc.

HR (Recruitment Officer)

  • Identify appropriate relocation allowance.
  • Contact Grace Removals with details of new appointee and confirm relocation allowances.
  • Provide nominated Travel Service Provider with details of new appointee, extent of travel allowance and BU/PG for costs.
  • Check and arrange payment of invoice from Grace Removals.

Grace Removals Group

  • Contact new appointee and assess needs based on allowances.
  • Manage all aspects of household move (if applicable).
  • Provide the University Insurance and Risk Management Officer with a copy of the Packing Inventory.
  • Arrange temporary accommodation (if necessary).
  • Provide required settlement services (if applicable).
  • Liaise with appointee and Human Resources as necessary.
  • Invoice the University as appropriate.

University appointed Travel Service Provider

  • Discuss travel plans with new appointee.
  • Arrange appropriate flight bookings in line with travel allowances.
  • Prepare and communicate itinerary.
  • Charge costs directly to the University (as appropriate).

Related forms:

TRIM File No:

F22036

Contact position:

Manager, Attraction and Recruitment

Related Policies or legislation:

Fringe Benefits Tax Policy

Selection for Appointment

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