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DRAFT Administration Policy

41.111:  Relocation Expenses

Status:Approved on September 11, 2017Signatures and dates
on archival copy
Effective:30 days after approval 
Initiated by:Colleen Bendl
Chief Human Resource Officer
Endorsed by:Deborah J. Shaffer
Vice President for Finance and Administration
Approved by:M. Duane Nellis
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Numeric Index Policy and Procedure Alphabetical Index
  1. Overview

    This policy provides for consistent compensation to employees for certain relocation expenses related to their relocation to Ohio for employment at Ohio university.

    1. Eligibility

      Benefits eligible faculty and staff with appointment types noted below:

      1. Regular appointments with FTE level of 0.75 or greater (as defined in policy 40.106).

      2. Term appointments with a duration of one year or greater and with FTE level of 0.75 or greater (as defined in policy 40.106).

      3. "Group I," "Group II," "Group IV," and "Clinical" faculty (as defined by the "Faculty Handbook").

    2. Summary

      Ohio university provides relocation assistance to facilitate the movement of eligible faculty and staff. This program helps Ohio university to remain competitive in the recruitment process in attracting a pool of talent to meet its needs.

      This policy is designed to guide employees through the relocation process allowing them to complete their move to Ohio university with minimum difficulty.

      Ohio university may compensate eligible faculty and staff for transportation of household goods, temporary housing, travel, and lodging cost from the previous residence. While it is our intention to assist new employees with most reasonable and actual costs associated with their move, this policy does not provide full reimbursement for all expenses the employee may incur. In the event that both the relocating employee and partner are employed by Ohio university only one benefit up to the maximum provided under this policy will be provided to relocate the household.

      The amount provided may be expended over a period of up to two years from the first day of employment.

      Departments are responsible for determining the need for, applicability of, and the amount of relocation compensation, up to the maximum amounts provided in this policy. Any exception that exceeds the amounts specified in this policy must be approved by the president or provost.

      The relocation benefits shall be specifically stated in the offer of employment. University human resources ("UHR") is charged with the responsibility to act as a liaison between the hiring department and the employee. The hiring department will notify UHR immediately following the offer to start the relocation process.

  2. Policy guidelines

    Benefits provided by this policy have tax implications to those receiving the benefit. Tax information is described in internal revenue service ("IRS") "Publication 521, Moving Expenses." The current information is subject to change by the IRS. Please refer to the IRS website and "Publication 521" and consult a tax professional for tax advice.

    Detailed descriptions of the processes used to implement this policy will be maintained online, linked through https://www.ohio.edu/hr/employment/.

  3. Methods for payment of relocation expenses

    Direct payment to relocation service supplier:

    Unless the employee has elected to move themselves, the employee will contract with one or more of the university approved moving service providers. Ohio university will pay the moving company for the movement of personal belongings, furniture, clothing, etc., subject to the limits of this policy.

    1. Payment to the new employee prior to the start of employment

      A one-time payment may be made directly to the employee. The payment will come from accounts payable for the full amount. Individuals will be responsible for all expenses associated with house hunting trips, temporary housing, travel, and lodging at the time of their move.

      If the employee elects to self-move (e.g., renting a trailer or truck), excluding Ohio university from the process of relocating the household goods, then payment to the employee may be issued for the full amount of the relocation award as stated in the letter of offer.

      All applicable taxes will be withheld from one of the employee's first paychecks. If the amount of tax due exceeds the employee’s take-home pay, the additional tax due will be divided evenly and spread over two, or more, pays, as needed, however, cannot cross over calendar years. The entire payment will be reported as taxable wages on the annual "Form W-2."

    2. Payment to the new employee after the start of employment

      One-time payment to be made to the employee processed with a regular paycheck. All applicable taxes will be withheld from the payment. Taxes will not be withheld for this payment from future paychecks as is done with option two.

    Employee must retain documentation of expenses for tax purposes. The employee is encouraged to consult a tax professional for further advice.

  4. General instructions

    The amount of relocation provided cannot exceed eighteen thousand dollas. The amount of relocation being provided should be discussed and disclosed to the new employee during the hiring process and the amount should be specified in the offer letter.

    1. Temporary housing

      For information about university-owned housing, the employee should be directed to policy 03.007. A list of the accommodations is published online linked through https://www.ohio.edu/housing/ (scroll down to "Guest and Interim Housing" for details). All inquiries may be made by calling the residential housing office. Use of university accommodations is not without cost. An employee in transition is expected to pay for his or her accommodations, for all services rendered.

      For information about non-university-owned housing, the employee should be directed to the "where to stay" choices on the "Athens County Convention and Visitors Bureau" web site.

    2. Real estate and other options

      UHR will maintain information online, linked through https://www.ohio.edu/hr/employment/relocation.cfm, related to the optional relocation services that are available through the university-designated moving services agent. Some of these benefits and services may be available only to those employees that contract with the university-designated agent to move their household goods

  5. Exceptions

    Policy 01.003 applies to this policy, except that:

    1. Only the president or provost may approve exceptions to this policy that involve payments for services or benefits not covered above; that involve payments in amounts exceeding the maximum amounts specified in this policy; or that involve reducing the amount of repayment called for by part (C) of this policy.

    2. All exceptions involving maximum amounts or covered expenses must be made before the employee accepts the offer of employment. There are to be no ex post facto exceptions to this policy.

  6. Relocation expense repayment

    The employee must sign and submit the "Relocation Expense Repayment Agreement" in order to receive reimbursement of relocation expenses. The "Relocation Expense Repayment Agreement" is incorporated by reference as part of this policy.

    The agreement shall be in effect for two years or until the end of the appointment, whichever comes first. If, during the agreement, the employee is terminated for cause or chooses to terminate his or her employment with Ohio university, then repayment of funds to Ohio university by the employee shall be based on the number of calendar days employed (i.e., number of continuous days on employed status, not number of days physically present for work. For example, a faculty member with an academic year appointment whose work typically begins on 08/15/2016 and ends on 05/15/2017 is treated as being employed throughout the summer break period provided they resume their academic appointment), according to the chart below:

    Days EmployedRepayment
    0 - 365100 %
    366 - 48575 %
    486 - 60550 %
    606 - 73025 %

    If it is found that the employee obtained employment fraudulently (e.g., under falsified credentials), then repayment will be for one hundred percent of relocation costs previously paid by the university, regardless of the number of days employed.

    At the university's discretion, the repayment may be paid, in whole or in part, by deduction from amounts otherwise owed by the university to the employee (e.g., final pay). If UHR is unable to withhold from an expected future payout or regularly scheduled pay UHR, will submit a billing request to the Bursar’s Office for collection, enforceable by the attorney general’s office. See the "Relocation Expense Repayment Agreement" text for complete details. The agreement should be completed and returned with the employee's acceptance letter.

Administrative Policy Manual

Yingjie Huang revised this page
on September 21, 2017.

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