Banking and money

Tax

Income Tax, also known as Pay As You Earn (PAYE), is deducted from your wages each month. The amount of tax that you pay depends on how much you earn and there is a minimum amount that you need to earn before tax will be deducted.

There is a useful tool which allows you to enter your total annual salary and will calculate your approximate monthly take home pay. (Please note this is only a guide and is not exact).

National Insurance

A National Insurance number is unique to you and enables a record to be kept of all of the tax and national insurance contributions you make. National insurance contributions go towards things like  the NHS, and state benefits. The amount of national insurance you pay depends upon your earnings and is subject to a maximum. You may have a National Insurance Number printed on the back of your biometrics residence permit. If you have not got a National Insurance number you will need to apply for a NI Number by phone once you are in the UK

Once you know your National Insurance number then you should let HR know.

State Pension

The State Pension is a regular payment that people can claim once they have reached retirement age. The amount of pension that people build up and can subsequently claim varies.

Information about the State Pension can be found on HM Revenue and Customs webpages. The University also operates pension schemes in addition to the State Pension.

Bank accounts

You will need to open a UK account so that the University can pay you, so arrange to visit a bank and open an account soon after you arrive. There are 2 banks on campus (Barclays, and Lloyds TSB). The Santander Universities branch is also close by.

Before the Bank will open an account for you, they will need to carry out identity checks. It is likely that they will want to see your passport, proof of employment (such as a copy of your employment contract) and proof of your UK address (such as a tenancy agreement). It may take a couple of weeks to get things sorted, so make sure you have access to funds during this time such as through your home country bank account and/or travellers cheques. Some bank accounts will incur a monthly fee and some accounts will pay you interest on the cash that is deposited. Ask the bank to explain the types of accounts available to you before you make a decision.

Once the bank account is open, you will normally be issued with a combined debit and cash card. Please let The University Payroll team have your bank account number and sort code as soon as possible

Benefits

Citizens Advice has published some guidance to explain the rules on benefits and contributions for people coming to live or work in the UK from other countries.   

UK credit score

A good credit score is required before any request by you for borrowing is accepted by a finance company, e.g. loans, credit cards and mortgages. A credit score is built over a period of time based on the spending activity of an individual. If you are new to the UK then you probably will not have any spending history and so may not be eligible to apply for a credit card or a bank account with an overdraft facility. One way to start building a credit history is to arrange a mobile phone contract rather than pay-as-you-go as the phone provider will register you with several credit agencies as part of this process.

Speak to your bank about what account they will offer you and if you need a credit card then ask them what requirements they have. Some banks will offer a credit card to people with limited credit history but it may have a high interest rate so take care to check this and try and pay off the balance in full each month.

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