Migrating to the UK permanently, or simply spending a year or two finding out what Britain has to offer?
Then first you’ll need to sort out a couple of vitals: Your visa, your UK bank account, and your National Insurance number.
- First and foremost: Your visa
Before you can start organizing anything else, you need to ensure you’re going to be granted permission to live and work in the UK. To do this, you’re going to need a UK visa. For most people, the variety of visa options, changing legislation, and bureaucracy involved makes applying for a UK visa a daunting task to say the least.
UK visa applications are also expensive, so you’ll want to know that you’ve got everything in order to ensure your application has the greatest chance of success. The best way to go about this is to use an expert immigration consultant who can guide you through every step of the process.
- Setting up a UK bank account
One of the first things you’ll need to do when you land in the UK is open up a UK bank account. Banks in the UK make it notoriously difficult for newcomers to open an account. They often require three months’ worth of utility bills, as well as a lease agreement, and that’ll most likely only get you the most basic account option.
As a newcomer, you can’t be expected to have all these documents ready. That’s where it helps to get some professional help. Using a relocation specialist can take the stress and hassle out of this process. Using their long-standing relationships with high-street UK banks, some of these specialists can open a UK bank account for you quickly and easily when you land in the UK.
- You’ll need an NI number and this is how you’ll get one
Your NI number is the unique number that is given to you by the Department for Work and Pensions in the UK. This number is used to track your tax and NI contributions every year, as well as ensure that you’re paying the correct tax to HMRC.
If you don’t have an NI number, you’ll end up paying higher, emergency tax rates and you won’t be able to claim this back (as was the case in years gone by). To overpaid tax at the end of the year you’ll need a valid NI number. Employers usually deduct emergency tax from your salary at a flat rate of 22%, so it’s in your interests to get this sorted.
In addition to all this, it’s important that you get your NI number before you start looking for work in the UK, as many employers will not employ you without one.
Make your new start as easy as possible. Get in touch with a relocation expert who will be able to help you with your visa, bank account and NIO number.