Queen Mary University of London has a vibrant international community. Our International staff form a key part of the University. As the cost of immigrating to the UK increases, Queen Mary wishes to provide financial assistance to our international staff coming to and working in the UK on Tier 2 visas with the introduction of a Visa Reimbursement Scheme.
Purpose of the Scheme
The scheme offers a reimbursement of the visa fee and Immigration Health Surcharge for staff using the Tier 2 immigration category. If you are a new or current international member of staff at Queen Mary who requires a Tier 2 visa to allow you to live and work in the UK, we can reimburse the cost of your visa and the Immigration Health Surcharge.
The scheme applies to:
- new employees with Tier 2 visas who joined the University after 1 May 2018;
- current employees who are renewing their Tier 2 visas after 1 May 2018;
- those switching from another visa category into the Tier 2 visa route (e.g. those on a Tier 4 visa or a dependents visa) after 1 May 2018
Queen Mary will reimburse both visa fees and the Immigration Health Surcharge up to a maximum amount, as shown in the table below. The maximum claimable amount will depend on the length of the visa and whether the application is being made within the UK or outside the UK.
Applying from outside the UK for a visa up to 3 years
up to £1,210
Applying from outside the UK for a visa up to 5 years
up to £2,120
Applying from inside the UK for a visa up to 3 years
up to £1,304
Applying from inside the UK for a visa up to 5 years
up to £2,408
Note: The above visa rates are correct as of April 2018
If the actual cost incurred by the employee for their visa and Immigration Health Surcharge is less than the figure shown then the University will reimburse the actual cost of the visa and the Immigration Health Surcharge.
Please note that for the avoidance of doubt no other costs can be claimed via the Visa Reimbursement Scheme such as:
- Tier 2 Priority or Premium service;
- English Language Tests fees;
- Medical Test Fees;
- National Academic Recognition Information Centre (NARIC) service fees;
- UK legal fees for advice on immigration; and;
- Any costs for dependents.
How and when can I make a claim?
A claim form for the Visa Reimbursement Scheme will be issued (via email) to the employee or prospective employee along with the release of the Tier 2 Certificate of Sponsorship. The employee will be required to pay for any expenses incurred at the time of making a visa application. On commencement of employment at Queen Mary and after completion of the required Right to Work checks, the employee can submit a claim for reimbursement. Claim forms must be submitted directly to Human Resources (details are included on the form), with relevant receipts.
Payment will be made by BACS directly into the individual’s bank account at the earliest opportunity on receipt of the completed claim form and associated receipts.
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 completion of the Reimbursement of Tier 2 Immigration Fees Request Form.
The tax treatment of visa reimbursement may change to take account of revised tax guidance.
What Happens if I Leave Queen Mary?
If you resign from your employment with Queen Mary within 3 years of the reimbursement, you will be required to repay the University according to the following scale:
- Resignation during first year: 100%
- Resignation within second year: 50%
- Resignation within third year: 25%
Other Immigration Categories
This scheme does not apply to any costs associated with any other immigration category such as, but not limited to, Tier 1, UK Ancestry Visa, UK Citizenship, Naturalisation, Right of Abode, or EEA Family Permit.
The University’s visa reimbursement scheme is not contractual and the University reserves the right to amend or withdraw the scheme at any time.
Full details of the scheme are detailed in the following document:
To make a claim please complete the below claim form and arrange for it to be authorised by your Line Manager. Authorised copies should be return to Paul Byrne, together with copies of the relevant receipts.