There are all sorts of documents to remember when you move to a different country, And here i’m gonna talk about my experiences.
- Work permit. If you want to work in a foreign country you have to make sure you’re allowed to work there. For a norwegian moving to England that isn’t an issue, because we’re both in the EEA. Technically, I should be able to apply for any job in the UK without extra documents from any of the two governments.
- National insurance number/sosical security number/identity number: It has different names in different countries, but most countries today operate with some form of identity number, and this is unique in each country. My norwegian identity number is useless in England. In theory you shouldn’t strictly need this to apply for jobs in the UK, but these days most job applications are on online forms, and they wont let you go to the next step without filling in your national insurance number. The big problem with this number is that you can’t even apply for one without actually being in the UK. For me it took 10 days from i arrived in Leeds and untill my “proof of identity interview” was scheduled, and nearly a month after that untill i actually got my number. This meant more than a month without even being able to apply for a job!
- Proof of identification and/or adress: This is something they ask for everywhere over here, and something that gave me big problems. Basically, proof of identity is passport/birth certificate or driving lisence (there’s a full list of what documents they accept on the official government website), and proof of adress is any official letters, bank statements or utility bills in your name sent to your adress within the last 3 months. The last one was the problem for me. I moved in with my boyfriend, all the bills were already in his name, and i had no official letters. When i tried to sign up with a bank to get a bank statement they asked me for two different proofs of adress, and when i rang the gas and water companies they asked for my bank details! I was stuck for ages, untill a bank in the end agreed to use the letter with my national insurrance number (official document) as enough proof.
- proof of english skills: Some employers have asked for some kind of proof that my english is good enough. This is quite rare, but if you are applying for a job over here, or want into a university, be prepared to have to sit an english exam! And save money for it, they’re not cheap.
- Taxes: your home country might require you to pay tax to them for several years after you’ve moved abroad. However, with a national insurrance number your taxes are automatically deducted from your wages and sent to the state of England. But the rules says you should only pay taxes to one country at a time. This means that you’ll have to apply for a refund from England at the end of the tax year, so you can pay your own country. Check how high the rates are back home, you dont want to end up having to pay more than you get refunded!
As long as you know what you go to and are prepared for some suprises it shouldn’t be too hard. But make sure you have some savings! And be ready to wait for a while for all the paperwork to come through. Good luck =)