How to Convince Your Company to Reimburse Relocation Costs

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How to Convince Your Company to Reimburse Relocation Costs

Staff Writer · Apr 12, 2010

When your company asks you to take on a new role across town or halfway across the world, relocation costs can be a big factor in how your job change affects you. Unfortunately, not all companies are likely to be willing to reimburse individuals for the cost of moving, even if the company originally asked them to transfer. Here are some reported ways that workers can get a slightly better chance of getting themselves compensated for all of the effort and money that goes into a job-related move.

The Value of a Quick Move

If time is a factor in your relocation, your company should understand that financial help from their end will help you be in the places that you need to be in order to promote the most value from your move. In this kind of symbiotic situation, corporate relocation reimbursement makes a lot of sense, and that should be apparent to the top brass.

Highlight Your History with the Company

If you are a new recruit who just asked for a transfer six months into your job, you’re not nearly as likely to get assistance with relocation costs. However, if you’re a true veteran of your office who has been around doing the company’s bidding for years, you can leverage this towards a better chance at getting compensated for things like relocation. Make sure managers and executives know that you have put a lot into your job role, and that you deserve help with difficult transitions that the company has requested.

Talk about Tax Code Impact

Some corporate managers are likely to shrug off their responsibility for relocation reimbursement by saying that workers can “take it out of taxes” in the form of a tax deduction. However, this may not work for all kinds of relocating staffers, so if you aren’t likely to get a significant relocation deduction, make sure your bosses know that reimbursement is your only way to recoup costs.

Acknowledge the Economic Situation

Lots of human resources people agree that it’s generally a good strategy to undercut excuses about a current economic situation by acknowledging them beforehand. Letting your bosses know that you realize how tight the budget is can be a good preamble to a conversation about specific reimbursements. Some managers will always use tough economic times as a shield, and sometimes, calling them out on this is important. When done the right way, it can work in your favor.

Talk About the “Soft Value” of Relocation

Executives and other decision-makers might be more willing to put money into relocation reimbursement if they understand the sacrifices that you have already made. Taking your kids out of local schools, leaving a local home and renting it out, or any other life changes count as your contribution to the greater corporate goal. It might help to highlight some of these to your employer.

Find Corporate Allocation Pathways

Talk to human resources staff about whether specific corporate programs are in place to facilitate relocation reimbursement. Sometimes, it’s all a matter of finding the best avenues for getting this kind of compensation, when reimbursement policies may be written into a complicated corporate philosophy and policy manual.

All of the above can help workers advocates for their rights in a relocation situation.

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