Dean's Office contact: Debbie Olson

An offer letter for a new faculty member should include the following paragraph concerning the relocation incentive payment. (See samples of offer letters on the A&S Web.)

This offer includes a relocation incentive payment in the amount of $_____. Acceptance of this offer confirms your understanding that the full amount of the relocation incentive payment must be repaid to the University, if within one year of the date of your appointment you voluntarily terminate University employment, or if you engage in behavior that makes termination of employment necessary. In addition, acceptance of this offer may have tax consequences for you, and necessary payroll deductions will be taken from the relocation incentive payment. If you have questions about the tax implications of the relocation incentive payment, you may wish to consult a tax professional for advice. You will receive this payment as a separate check along with your first paycheck.

The default gross relocation payment amount funded by the College is $5,000. The Divisional Dean and/or department may decide to include additional funds to increase the relocation incentive payment. The initial amount agreed upon by the Divisional Dean and the department chair is included in the offer letter. The relocation incentive payment can be used by the candidate for any expenses related to their relocation to Seattle.

It is important to note that the new faculty member cannot receive the relocation incentive payment until he/she is on payroll (e.g., if the start date is 9/16/2013 the payment cannot be processed until 9/16/2013). Payroll will process this payment as a separate, hand-drawn check, and it will be available with regular paychecks. The payment will appear on the appropriate budget(s) under object-sub-object code 01-80 and is assessed the related benefit amount.

Once the candidate accepts the UW’s offer, the department should submit the A&S Final Terms of New Employment Offer form to Carol Rush in the Dean’s Office. A copy of the final (most recent) offer letter and a copy of the acceptance letter should be attached. The Final Terms form now has a line reading “Relocation incentive payment,” with a yes or no check box and an amount line. The section for Non-base Salary Items should include the relocation incentive payment and the funding source details of the College-funded amount as well as any additional College funds or department funds contributing to the total relocation incentive payment. 

As another attachment to the Final Terms form, the hiring unit must complete and submit the Relocation Incentive Payment Approval Request Form for the Dean’s signature. The Dean’s Office will return the signed original to the department and retain a copy for their files. College funds for the relocation incentive payment will be transferred to the appropriate department budget(s) as soon as possible. The transfer amount will cover the gross amount for the relocation incentive payment as well as the benefits associated with the payment (e.g., if the College contributed $5,000 for the relocation incentive payment, the amount transferred would be $5,000 plus benefits at the current rate for category 01-80).

After the complete new appointment paperwork (see New Appointment Documentation) has been submitted and approved by the Dean’s Office and Academic Human Resources, and the new faculty member is placed on payroll, the payroll coordinator sends the Relocation Incentive Payment Authorization Form to the Payroll Office. The original Relocation Incentive Payment Approval Form, signed by the Dean’s Office, should be attached to the Authorization form. The Payroll Office is responsible for entering the payment into the payroll system. It is the department’s responsibility to use the appropriate department budget number(s) for the relocation incentive payment.

Potentially a faculty candidate may want to negotiate the relocation incentive payment. In consultation with the Divisional Dean, the department chair may counter with a household goods move rather than the relocation incentive payment. If this is the case, a revised offer letter with an appropriate paragraph about household goods move (see Moving expenses) would be sent to the candidate. It is important to note the household goods move will be governed by State of Washington policies, and the funds are not flexible. It is the responsibility of the candidate to read and understand the policies regarding household goods moves. The College will cover the actual cost of the eligible moved items or $5,000, whichever is less. The Divisional Dean and/or department may decide to include additional funds to increase the amount available for the household goods move.

When a candidate accepts the revised offer with a household goods move, the Final Terms of Offer form sent by the department should reflect this choice: the most recent offer letter and acceptance should be attached, the “no” box should be checked for the relocation incentive payment, and the funding source details for the move should be stated under Non-base Salary Items. The department is responsible for completing the A-33 form, issuing the purchase order for the household goods move, and serving as liaison with Purchasing for any questions the new faculty member may have. Upon completion of the move, the Dean’s Office will reimburse the department via budget transfer for up to $5,000 or the total College contribution.