Research and knowledge exchange

International researchers

Moving from abroad to take up your new research role can be an exciting and daunting prospect. This page provides practical information and resources to support you in your international relocation to Sussex.

Click on the titles below for more information, links and resources to support you in your move to Sussex.

Visas and immigration

Before you arrive in the UK, you and those travelling with you will need to have the appropriate documents and visas to qualify you to live and work in the UK. You should check your visa requirements with UK Visas and Immigration. Visas can be costly and can take several weeks or even months to obtain so you should plan plenty of time to obtain your visa. Your school's HR advisor should be able to assist you with queries regarding your visa.

Living and working in Brighton

Brighton is a vibrant city by the sea with a very diverse cultural scene with plenty of theatres, cinemas, venues and galleries. The nightlife is exciting with plenty of bars, clubs, pubs and live music. The Brighton Festival is the highlight of the cultural year, with other festivals and events taking place throughout the year. Visit the University's Brighton pages for more information.

Surrounding the city is the beautiful South Downs National Park with historic towns of Lewes and Arundel, the cathedral city of Chichester and many picturesque towns and villages. The Visit Sussex website has plenty of information about places to explore across the county of Sussex.

There are excellent road and rail links from the city to London and other major UK cities and Gatwick International airport is half an hour by road or train.

Getting to and from campus and around Brighton & Hove is straightforward via the network of bus routes. The city is bike friendly with plenty of cycle lanes and paths.

Relocation expenses and services

The University recognises that relocating for work can be a stressful and expensive process for researchers.

To support your relocation, the University provides removal expenses of up to £2500 for new members of staff with a contract exceeding one year duration. You will be required to provide receipts for your removal costs to claim reimbursement. For more guidance on claiming removal expenses refer to the HR removal expenses policy. If undertaking a major international relocation you may be able to claim over £2500 removal expenses at the discretion of your Head of School.

For significant/overseas relocations you may choose to use the services of a relocation company. Your school’s Human Resources Advisor will be able to provide you with a list of relocation services.

Accommodation

There is no accommodation on campus for members of staff, so before you arrive at Sussex you will need to find private accommodation. The University’s Housing Services provide guidance and resources for house hunting in the Brighton & Hove area, including lists of properties for rent through University registered landlords.

You can also use search facilities such as www.rightmove.co.uk and www.zoopla.co.uk to find accommodation for rent/sale. If you do not want to go through an agency www.gumtree.com can also be a useful place to look. The Brighton rental market moves very fast and properties are often only on the market for a few days. Sometimes it is possible to find property that is not yet on the market by going in person to letting agents and discussing your requirements.

In the majority of cases you will be required to rent/buy through a letting/estate agency. If you have not previously rented in the UK or do not have credit history in the UK, most landlords and letting agents will require you to have one or all of the following:

  • a guarantor (a third party who agrees to pay your rent if you don't)
  • up to 6 months rent in advance
  • proof of earnings and employment, for which your University appointment letter should be sufficient along with your last 3 months of bank statements and payslips (if you have them) from your previous employer.

Landlords/agencies may require additional or alternative documentation so it is best to check in advance with your agency to see what you will need to provide.

Banking

Due to tightening of laws, it has become increasingly complicated to open a bank account in the UK. Before you arrive you should start to research the documents you need to provide as different banks require different levels of information. You will need to book an appointment with your chosen bank to open your account (there is a Barclays bank on the University Campus). There can be waiting lists for appointments so it is best to book in advance.

To open an account banks will require proof of your UK address – examples of documents that banks may accept could include; utility bill, tenancy agreement, council tax bill, employers letter (can be obtained through HR), EU/EAA identity card, bank statement.

Providing proof of address can be challenging as it may be a few weeks before you receive any official post to your new UK address. Options to overcome this can be:

  • Inform your existing overseas bank before you move of your new UK address and get them to send a statement to your UK address as soon as you arrive. The statement can then be used as proof of address to open your UK bank account.
  • Ask you HR contact to arrange a letter from the University to be sent to your UK address confirming your employment. This will count as proof of address and you could also ask for confirmation of your salary to be included in the letter which will count as proof of earnings
  • Some (but not all) banks will also accept a UK TV license as proof of address. You can apply for a TV licence online and it will be emailed to you almost immediately and includes your address.

You may also be required to provide proof of income, so you will need your last 3 months bank statements and payslips from your previous employer (if you are moving from another job) along with your University of Sussex appointment letter detailing your new salary. If you cannot obtain proof of income you should still be able to open a basic account, but may not be entitled to credit facilities.

Tax

When you live and work in the UK you will be required to pay tax on your earnings. Income Tax and National Insurance Contributions will automatically be deducted from your monthly salary and the percentage of tax you pay will depend on your salary. When you arrive in the UK you will need to obtain a National Insurance (NI) number in order to access free healthcare and other services. University Human Resources can help you with this or you can phone 0345 600 0643 or visit the national insurance number webpages. For more information on the UK tax system visit UK government's tax pages

To work out your ‘take home salary’ after tax, pension and other deductions you can use a salary calculator or ask your school’s HR payroll contact to give you a salary breakdown.

Health

If you will be living and working in the UK for more than 6 months, you will be entitled to free treatment under the UK’s National Health Service. This means you can register with NHS doctors and dentists and seek treatment from other NHS healthcare services. If you are staying in the UK for less than 6 months you will not be entitled to free non-emergency treatment under the NHS and you will need medical insurance.

If you live within the Brighton and Hove region you are eligible to register with a doctor at the campus Health Centre. If you live outside the Brighton area you will need to register with a doctor local to where you live.

All staff are eligible to register with the campus dental practice.

Families

If you are from outside the EU and have a visa to live and work in the UK, your spouse/partner and any dependent children under 18 should be allowed to join you in the UK, although they must apply separately for a visa. If of school age, your children should be entitled to free education provided by state schools.

The University has a number of family friendly policies and schemes to support members of staff with (or expecting) families. These include maternity/paternity/adoption leave, parental leave, flexible working, and pre-tax salary sacrifice schemes for childcare.

There is a nursery and pre-school facility on campus operated by The Cooperative Childcare. The nursery opens daily from 7.30am-6.30pm all year round. You can find information about other local childcare providers at www.childcare.co.uk and www.ofsted.gov.uk

You can find information about schools in your area at https://www.compare-school-performance.service.gov.uk/

English language support

The Sussex Centre for Language Studies is now offering its English language support to Sussex research staff. This includes 1 to 1 language tutorials, small group workshops and online resources for researchers who are non-native English speakers.

You can find details of the workshops and tutorials available on the Academic Development Study Direct site.

Spaces for 1 to 1 tutorials are released in batches and fill up very quickly, so you may need to wait for a few weeks for an appointment with a tutor.

    

 

EURAXESS - European Commission and British Council Support for Researchers

Euracess Guide for International Researchers Moving to the UK

EURAXESS is a European Commission initiative aimed at supporting researchers mobility in the European Union.

 

Euraxess logo

 

EURAXESS UK have produced a comprehensive guide for international researchers moving to the UK that contains all of the general information you need to know about living and working in the UK.

 

Welcome Guide for New Researchers

University of Sussex Research Staff Welcome Guide

The Research Staff Office are very pleased to bring you a 28 page interactive Welcome Guide for new Research Staff joining the University. 

Alongside general information about the University, the Welcome Booklet includes information about:

  • The Research Staff Office and other support services around the university
  • Support for your career development
  • Support for your research
  • Practical guides on factors such as policies, employment queries, term dates, insurance
  • Information on living in Brighton and relocating from overseas

The booklet also contains a helpful induction check list for new Research Staff to complete in their first few days and in their new role.

 

Useful Pages

If you can't find the information you are looking for you may find the following pages helpful.

 

 

Contact Us

E: researchstaffoffice@sussex.ac.uk

T: 01273 877979

Research Staff Office, Research and Enterprise Services, Level 1, Falmer House, University of Sussex, BN1 9QF

 Twitter @SussexResearchr