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Visa Reimbursement Scheme

Introduction

Durham University offers a Visa Reimbursement Scheme for employees who require a Skilled Worker/Tier 2 to allow them to live and work in the UK while working at Durham University. The purpose of the Scheme is to support new and current employees towards their visa costs. We also offer eligible staff reimbursement of their Indefinite Leave to Remain application fee.

Eligibility

The scheme applies to:

  • new employees with Skilled Worker/Tier 2 visas who have joined the University on or after 1st May 2017 who are appointed on an open-ended contract, or on a fixed-term contract of employment of 2 years or more
  • current employees who are renewing their Skilled Worker/Tier 2 visas on or after 1st May 2017
  • those switching from another visa category into the Skilled Worker/Tier 2 visa (e.g. those on a Student Route visa or a dependent visa) after 1st May 2017

How much you pay for a Skilled Worker/Tier 2 visa depends on your situation, where you are and how you apply. For current fees please visit the Home Office immigration and nationality fees website.

The maximum amount that you can claim depends on the length of your visa and whether you are applying within the UK or outside the UK.

 

Only standard* visa fees are eligible for reimbursement. Additional fees under the UK Visa Citizenship Application Service or VFS Global will be the responsibility of the applicant.

*Costs incurred for the Immigration Health Surcharge, the biometric appointment fee or the additional costs for English Language Tests or NARIC statements cannot be claimed under the Visa Reimbursement Scheme.

 

If a Head of Department considers that there is a sound business reason why the University should pay for the Premium service fee to enable a faster decision on your application, they should submit their rationale to Nic Johnston, Assistant Director of HR (nicola.johnston@durham.ac.uk). This will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

 

Other Conditions

The University's visa reimbursement scheme is not contractual and the University reserves the right to amend or withdraw the scheme.

If you resign or your employment is terminated within 2 years of the reimbursement, you will be required to repay the visa reimbursement; this amount will decrease by 1/24 for every month of services completed.

The Visa Reimbursement Scheme is only open to eligible Durham University employees. For their family members, they may access the Interest-Free Loan Scheme. For information on the scheme please contact hr.ukvi@durham.ac.uk 

This policy is separate from the Durham University Relocation and Removals Policy. Visas and any associated costs should not be claimed for under removals/relocation or any other method other than this policy.

When can I make a claim?

You are required to pay for any expense incurred at the time of making a visa application. Once you have commenced employment with Durham University and completed all the required Right to Work checks you can submit your claim.

If you are about to join the University, you should submit the claim form when you take up your post, and your fees will be reimbursed with your salary.

If you are already 'on the payroll', you can submit the claim form as soon as you can evidence payment of the fees to UKVI; once approved for payment, your fees will be reimbursed with your next monthly salary.

How do I make a claim?

All claims must be made on the Visa Reimbursement Application Form.

How and when will I receive payment?

You will receive payment with your monthly salary in pound sterling in accordance with UKVI fees published on the Home Office immigration and nationality fees website.

Will I have to pay tax on the reimbursement?

As the reimbursement of visa fees is classed as earnings by the UK tax authority, the University must deduct tax and national insurance contributions (NICs), where appropriate. For those new to the UK, you may qualify for tax exemption. This will be confirmed to you following the completion of the Visa Reimbursement Application Form.

The tax treatment of visa reimbursement may change to take account of revised tax guidance.

 

We also offer a Staff Interest Free Loan to support with additional costs. For more information please contact hr.ukvi@durham.ac.uk 

 

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