Moving expenses

If you are obliged by your employer to relocate as soon as possible (and in any event within two years) because you have to live close to your workplace in case of emergencies outside working hours, you are eligible for a reimbursement of your moving expenses. If the situation described here does not apply to you, your employer may still, under certain conditions, reimburse your moving expenses.


Reimbursement of moving expenses in case of relocation requirement

If your employer obliges you to relocate, you are eligible for a reimbursement of your moving expenses. This is an allowance related to the costs of relocating. Once the price quotation has been approved and you have submitted the original invoices, your transport expenses will be reimbursed. Other expenses, including refurbishing expenses, may also be reimbursed. You should make agreements to this end with your employer.

When does the relocation requirement apply?

Your employer can only impose a relocation requirement on work-related grounds. This means that the nature of your work must require you to live close to your work location, so that you can reach this location quickly in case of emergencies outside working hours. This requirement is very rare. Your employer will determine whether this applies to your job. A relocation requirement means that you have to relocate closer to your work as soon as possible, and in any case within two years. The specific conditions that must be met are specified in writing.

Relocation requirement: What expenses are reimbursed?

If you are required to relocate, you are entitled to reimbursement of your moving expenses in accordance with the Leiden University Moving Expenses Regulation 2016. This means that you will be granted an allowance for expenses related to the relocation, including transport and refurbishing costs.

Transport expenses
Transport expenses are expenses incurred in relocating your belongings. If you are obliged to relocate, you will be fully reimbursed for all reasonable transport costs, on the basis of a price quotation that has been approved by your employer, and once you have submitted the original invoices.  

Other expenses
The reimbursement of other expenses, including refurbishing expenses, may vary per case and may never exceed the amount established by the Tax Authority as the maximum tax-free reimbursement of moving expenses, which currently amounts to € 7,750.

Reimbursement of moving expenses without relocation requirement

Under certain conditions, you may agree to a moving allowance with your employer. This reimbursement of moving expenses and the conditions to which it is subject must be established in writing either before you start employment/are transferred, or within two years of starting employment or being transferred and in any event before you move house. The agreed allowance cannot be higher than it would have been in case of an obligation to relocate. Furthermore, it must meet the conditions set by the Tax Authority for the tax-free reimbursement of moving expenses (see also below). Your employer is not obliged to agree to reimburse your moving expenses.

Conditions set by Tax Authority
One of the requirements set by the Tax Authority is that the relocation must be sufficiently work-related. According to the Tax Authority this requirement is met in any event if the following two conditions apply:

  1. The employee relocates within two years of starting employment in a new position or transferring to a new position. 
  2. The employee lives further than 25 kilometres from the workplace and relocates so that the distance between the employee’s new home and his/her workplace is reduced by at least 60%.

Removal bonus

Are you moving within a 10 km radius of the place of employment and you are not receiving a reimbursement of moving expenses? In that case you might be eligible for a removal bonus of € 2,500.

Conditions:

  • you are or will be permanently employed, and
  • you are in receipt of the maximum commuting allowance (as of January 2016: € 45 per month for a full-time position), and 
  • you are moving to a location to which the commuting allowance does not apply (that is, within a 10 km radius of the place of employment).

This removal bonus is tax free if the requirements set by the Tax Authority are met for a tax-free reimbursement of moving expenses (also see above: Reimbursement of moving expenses without relocation requirement, Conditions set by Tax Authority).

For part-time employees, the removal bonus will be calculated pro rata in line with the number of working days per week. In the case of variable working days per week and/or in the case of an annual agreement, the removal bonus will be calculated pro rata, according to the scope of the appointment.

Expenses claim deadline of 3 months

The expenses claim for your moving costs or the removal bonus must be submitted no later than three months after you move. In your expenses claim, you should include all supporting evidence that may reasonably be expected by your employer.

Repayment obligation

If you resign from your position or if you are dismissed as a result of your own fault or negligence within a year of having been granted a moving expenses allowance or the removal bonus, you are obliged to repay this allowance. If this takes place later than a year but within two years after you were granted the allowance, you are obliged to repay 50% of the moving expenses allowance or the removal bonus received.

Regulation

Leiden University Moving Expenses Regulation 2016

More information on the tax-free reimbursement of moving expenses allowance can be found on the website of the Tax Authority (in Dutch).

Last Modified: 06-03-2016