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Frequently Asked Questions

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Childcare Options

Children shouldn’t be left alone at home. It is not against the law to leave a child unattended at any age but it is against the law to leave children in circumstances which put them in any kind of danger. So, for example, leaving a young child alone for several hours could place them in physical danger, emotional harm through loneliness and fear and neglect by not providing carers for them.

  • If you are moving to UK and you have school age children (age 4 – 16 years) you need to apply for a school place.
  • You can go to the local school and talk to the head teacher. If there is a place available you can take an admission form to complete and return to the local Education Authority.
  • Or go direct to the local Education Authority to find your local school. You will need to give details about your name, your children’s names and your address.

Whether you have just left school or no matter what stage you are at in life, you can enter into further education or higher education.
There are numerous opportunities available; either

The Student Loans Company (SLC) is a UK public sector organisation established to provide financial services, in terms of loans and grants, to over one million students annually, in colleges and universities across the four education systems of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
Our other key responsibility is the administration of the collection of repayments, from over two million customers no longer in higher education.

For further information about the following :

If you require information about establishing your academic qualifications from your home country, contact NARIC
NARIC is  a network of Centre of information for academic recognisation  providing information to EU citizens.

Head of Narfic
ECCTIS Ltd Oriel House, Oriel Road Cheltenham
UK- Gloucestershire GL50 1ZP
Tel 012 4226 0010   Fax 012 4225 8611

Driving (7)

Below there will be external links which will provide information about:

  • Driving Offences
  • What happens when you are stopped?
  • What can the Police do?
  • What road offences result in disqualification from driving?
  • What road offences result in vehicle seizure?
  • What road offences result in arrest and imprisonment?

In the UK, as you probably know, people drive on the left hand side of the road. Speed limits are shown in miles; 1 mile =1.60 kilometres. For complete information on driving rules in the UK, please consult the Highway Code.

Driving licence
To drive a vehicle or ride a motorcycle legally in the UK you must:
• hold the appropriate driving licence for the vehicle being driven
• meet driver minimum age requirements
• meet the legal eyesight standards

As a learner driver you must:

• be supervised by a qualified driver (not if riding a motorcycle)
• display L plates (L = learner; these are white signs with an "L" in red).

Car insurance protects motorists against liability in the event of accidents they may cause. It can also provide cover for the motorist's own vehicle in case of fire, theft or accidental damage.
Before using any vehicle, every motorist must have at least third party motor insurance. This is to make sure that, in the event of an accident, there is financial compensation to cover any injuries caused to other people or damage to other people's property, above any excess you are required to pay.

The MOT (Ministry of Transport) is a yearly inspection for vehicles over three years old and is required by law. It can only be conducted at Centres approved by VOSA (Vehicle and Operator Services Agency).

To drive a vehicle or ride a motorcycle legally in the UK you must display a current tax disc. This shows that Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) (also known as car tax) has been paid so that the vehicle can be used on the public road. Costs vary  for a car or motorcycle, depending on CO2 emissions and fuel type for vehicles registered on or after 1st March 2001. For vehicles registered before that date, the car tax payable is dependent on the cubic capacity of the engine.

There are a number of forms and procedures to be completed before you drive your car on the public road:

Employment (13)

There are 5 ways workers can find employment 
Job Centre: At the Job and Benefit’s Office local employers advertise current job vacancies free of charge   -  Updated daily. 

When you get a job and have receive your start date you must report to work at the time and on the date agreed.

On the first day of employment it is good practice to give the employee some induction training. This training varies from one company to another
During the induction you will receive information about the company’s rules & regulations, health and safety, emergency procedures, who is the line manager and what is expected of you.

Employment agencies find job placements, sometimes called ‘assignments’ for agency workers. Companies pay the agency a fee to hire workers for them. Your contract of employment or contract for service is likely to be with the agency rather than with the company where you work.

The National Minimum Wage is a set amount of money almost all the people working legally in the UK have a legal right to be paid.
If you are not paid the National Minimum Wage, call the National Minimum Wage Helpline on 0845 6000 678. The information you will receive will be confidential; they can help you to claim the national minimum wage as well as any pay your employer owes you in arrears.

At present, the National Minimum Wage is:

All employees, regardless of the number of hours they work per week, are entitled to receive a written statement from their employer, within two months of starting work. The statement describes the main terms of the contract of employment.  The statement must give details about: job title, wages, hours of work , holiday entitlement, sick pay , pension schemes , notice , grievance, dismissal and disciplinary procedure.

A contract may refer to other terms and conditions which may be contained in the Company Handbook.

There is a minimum right to ‘paid holiday’, but your employer may offer more than this. The main things you should know about holiday rights are:


Any national of the A8 countries (Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia or Slovenia) who wishes to work in the UK must register under the WRS.

The WRS is required for the first 12 full months of employment in UK.

An employee has the right to join a trade union, and should not be refused a job, dismissed, harassed or selected for redundancy because they are a member of or wish to join a trade union.

An employee also has the right not to join a trade union if they wish, and should not be refused a job, dismissed, harassed or selected for redundancy because they refused to join.

If you are too ill to work, you may be entitled to sick pay from your employer. There is no law that states an employer must pay sick pay, other than the employee's statutory entitlement to SSP, Statutory Sick Pay, which is a National Insurance contribution benefit.

Some private companies offer sick pay as a part of the contract of employment. These provisions vary. Other private companies may offer non-contractual sick pay schemes which are commonly known as ex gratia payments.

You may lose your job for a variety of reasons. The company may close or have to make redundancies. You may lose your job for another contractual reason or because you have done something wrong and have been dismissed through the disciplinary procedure. If you lose your job you need to understand your rights and what to do next.

Notice pay

There are a number of migrant support groups that can offer advice and help with form filling and signposting to appropriate groups.

The scheme allows workers from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) to enter the United Kingdom to do seasonal agricultural work for farmers and growers. This work is low skilled and includes:

Craigavon Industrial Development organization (CIDO) is a Government funded organization based in the Craigavon area created to promote enterprise. All their support is independent and impartial and most services are provided free of charge.  
They can help with advice about:

Starting up the business

  • Taxes, returns, payroll
  • How to exploit ideas
  • Import and export advice
  • How to grow your business

They also provide:

Finance (5)

Credit card

1) Credit cards are issued by banks, building societies and other organisations, for example under the MasterCard or Visa schemes. They can be used to pay for goods and services, or to obtain cash.

• Write in words the name of the person/company on the first line
• Write in words the amount of money to be paid
• Put a line after the amount to stop any additions
• Write the date in the top right-hand space
• Write the amount to be paid in figures in the box under the date
• Sign the cheque with your usual signature

Electronic transfer of funds to your UK bank account ("sending money by wire") - Quick, but expensive

Cheques - A slow method; cheques may take several weeks to clear

Credit card - Withdrawing money from your credit card can be expensive because of high interest charges

Traveller’s cheques - Keep a record of the numbers of traveller’s cheques and credit cards in case of loss or theft

Before a bank, building society or other lender decides whether to lend you money or give you credit to buy an item they will usually look at your credit file or credit record first. This file contains all your borrowing history from the previous six years. The rating you get depends on this information and is different for each person; different lenders may give you different ratings. The lender will use the rating they give you to decide if you should get a loan or form of credit from them.

Why does the lender do this?

General (9)
  • If you are witness or victim of crime, it is important you report to the police
  • To pay for the TV licence (at post office)
  • To pay all your bills: phone, water, electricity, gas, council tax.
  • Your vehicle should be registered at DVLA:
  • You should pay road tax:
  • you should have the insurance for your car
  • Your car should be tested for M.O.T
  • if you had a motor accident you must stop and exchange insurance details with other driver;

Some drugs are legal in the UK, but it is illegal to possess or sell some drugs.

Illegal drugs are:

  • heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and LSD (Class A drugs, the most dangerous)
  • speed and other amphetamines (Class B drugs)
  • Cannabis, some types of tranquilizers and GHB (Class C drugs).

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) define a racist incident to be:

‘any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person.’

The Police Service are committed to identifying and prosecuting perpetrators and reporting incidents to police provides essential information which, enables the police to prevent further incidents taking place and to identify those responsible.
Incidents can be reported by:-

Victim Support is  a voluntary organisation which assists people who were victims of crime. This service is free and confidential and is available …

In an emergency dial 999 or 112
You will be asked.
Which service do you require?
Please respond

You will then be asked to give:
Your name, and address location of the emergency & what the emergency is
Call 999 or 112 if someone is injured or there is a danger to life

Most residents in Northern Ireland are entitled to register to be able to vote at elections. You are required by law to register, regardless of whether or not you intend to vote and must register at the address he or she is resident, and be in Northern Ireland for at least 3 months.

Applications forms can be obtained from the website or by contacting the Electoral Office

A fishing license is required for all types of inland fishing.  Course License allows you to use two fishing rods to fish for Roach, Bream, Perch Pike Rudd and Carp. A Game license allows you to use one fishing rod to fish for trout and salmon. All course fish should be released and returned to the river of lake that they have been caught in. You can take two Pike per day, but Pike weighing over 8 kilograms must be returned.

There are various ways for you to give assistance to community and voluntary groups which will provide you with opportunities to : 

You can register a birth, marriage or death at the:

Craigavon Civic & Conference Centre,
Lakeview Road,
Craigavon. BT65
Tel 028 3831 2400
Opening hours:       Monday –Thursday 9.30am - to 12.30pm  and 2pm to 4.30pm

Health (5)

Craigavon Area Hospital is an acute hospital that offers a wide range of services including accident and emergency (A&E) Out of Hours Doctor and Dentist Department.

The accident and emergency department is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Access to the hospital services is via:

If you need to see a doctor at night or at weekends, telephone your local surgery; there will be a recorded message telling you how to contact a doctor. In case you cannot find the phone number from your surgery, call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47 and ask them for the out of hours doctor in your area.

A National Health Service (NHS) medical card is issued when you first register with a General Practitioner (GP). It contains your NHS number and other information such as your name, address, date of birth, and details of your registered practice or individual doctor.

If you do not have one (for example, in the case of a newborn baby or because you have just arrived from another country), the GP receptionist will give you a form to fill in (GMS1). When your application is approved, your medical card will be posted to your home address.

In order to receive medical treatment and support, you must register with a doctor at a Doctor's Surgery.

Anyone ‘ordinarily resident’ , including migrant workers, is entitled to free healthcare aside from those services which are not free to anyone but are means tested ( dentists, opticians, and prescription charges) The UK also has reciprocal agreements in place regarding the NHS and the entitlements to free treatment for visitors from all EU/EEA countries, thus visitors fro  these countries should not be charged for any treatment which becomes necessary during a temporary stay in the UK, other than normal charges that UK residents pay (e.g. prescriptions.)

Housing (9)

Local newspapers have adverts from landlords and estate agencies about accommodation available in the area. An appointment may be arranged to view the accommodation. It is always best to take a friend who has lived in the area with you.

Most estate agents have an office near town centres and can provide necessary information.

Some recruitment agencies provide their workers with accommodation. However, should your services with an agency be terminated you will be obliged to leave the accommodation provided by the agency.

Rent prices vary according to the area, quality and type of accommodation you are renting. When renting, always consider the price of the rent, utility bills, (e.g. electric), the deposit a landlord may request and if you the tenant have to pay the rates.

In most cases, it is the responsibility of your landlord to ensure that:

• The structure and exterior of your property, for example, the roof, windows, and ceilings etc are in repair, and
• The installations for the supply of water, gas and electricity and for sanitation and heating are in proper working order.

If the landlord fails to provide this, you should seek legal advice from the Citizen’s Advice  Bureau.

Gas safety

A tenant's responsibilities include:

• Paying your rent on time    
• Paying the bills in accordance with your tenancy agreement. eg;  rates, electric, TV license 
• Taking reasonable care of the premises
• Ending your tenancy with appropriate notice
• Give your landlord access when needed
• Reporting repairs needed or any other problems
• Respecting the smoking policy of the household

Rubbish must be placed in a wheeled bin for removal by the collection lorry. Refuse bags will not be collected. It is illegal to leave rubbish on the street and could result in a heavy fine in Court. Every household in the Borough should have a

Blue bin for general household rubbish 
Green bin for recyclable material. 

Newspapers, cardboard, plastic bottles food and drink tins. Do not put plastic bags, glass or leftover food into your green bin.


Make sure you’re correctly licensed

People who are not correctly licensed risk prosecution and a possible fine of up to £1,000.  TV Licensing understands, however, that some people find it hard to pay the annual fee of £145.50 for a colour TV Licence or £49 for a black and white licence in one go.  For this reason, there are a number of different ways to pay for a TV Licence, including a cash payment plan. The options are as follows:

Housing benefit is a benefit paid by the Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE) and can cover all or part of your weekly/monthly rent. It is paid to those on a low income or receiving other benefits such as income support or jobseekers allowance.

To make a claim, ask your local NIHE office for a housing benefit application form. You can get help completing it from your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau or community support offices.

• When you make a claim keep a copy of your form and any letters you send or receive.

When you leave an accommodation you must

• Inform the electricity supply companies (unless your electricity is paid by your landlord, as part of your tenancy) so they know you are not using these facilities anymore
• Inform the landline phone company
• Inform the cable TV company and the TV licensing authority
• Inform the local Rates Office, if you pay the rates.

If you have no home or in danger of losing your home you should go to your local Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE) district office that will assess you needs. NIHE has a statutory duty to persons who present as homeless, however, the level of help they can give you depends on whether you are eligible and your particular circumstances. The help may range from advice and assistance to providing temporary accommodation to permanent accommodation.

The ‘out-of-hours’ homelessness emergency telephone number is 028 3833 4444

Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Poland, and Hungary
• Since 1 May 2004 workers from these new EU member states have been free to come to the UK and access the UK labour market.
• They are required to register employment with the Home Office through the Workers Registration Scheme (WRS) within 1 month of starting work in order to be working legally in the UK.
For more information –

Romania and Bulgaria are A2 countries
•Joined 1 January 2007 and have many of the same rights as other EEA nationals but with some restrictions.
•They have limited access to UK the labour market and do not have a “right to reside” as a worker unless they have permission to do so under the Home Office’s Worker Authorisation Scheme.
•Skilled workers will continue to be permitted to come to the UK on work permits (e.g. doctors, engineers) and will continue to be admitted under the Highly Skilled Migrants Programme.

If you want to work in the United Kingdom, you should check that your status allows you to do so before taking up employment. Not everyone who comes to the UK is allowed to work. You can check if you are allowed to work by looking at the stamp in your passport. Examples of passport stamps can be found on the Immigration and

IOM is an independent organization working in partnership with a number of refugee advice agencies throughout the UK. IOM can provide you with assistance for a dignified and orderly return to your home country. Additionally IOM may be able to help you settle in your home country with Reintegration Assistance; this would depend on your individual circumstances. All enquiries will be treated confidentially. You need not give your name to receive free advice.

How you can apply?

EU member states that were part of the EU before 1st May 2004 or that became EU members on that date but with full EU rights are: Malta, Cyprus, Luxemburg, Austria, Belgium, Germany,Ireland, France, Sweden, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Italy, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Netherlands, and the UK.
In order to come to live and work in the UK as an EU national with full rights you will need a valid identity card or passport.

Free and confidential immigration advice and representation are available from the organizations listed below. All are voluntary organizations, independent of the Immigration Service and the Home Office. Interpreters can be arranged if necessary.                       

Taxation (5)

The National Insurance number is an unique and individual number through which the government identifies your national insurance and tax contributions. You need a NI number in order to apply for benefits and to prove your eligibility to certain services such as the Health Service.

Most workers in the UK pay national insurance. National Insurance (NI) contributions are what you pay towards a UK State pension and State benefits to help you if you lose your job or if you are too ill to work.

You can take up employment without a NI number as long as you apply for a number once you start work. A person can work in the UK without a NI number for 6 months, but it is advisable to apply for one as soon as possible as this may affect your eligibility when applying for tax credits and other benefits.

Emergency Tax is when you start work, your employer may deduct emergency tax from your pay.

This links to the "Emergency Tax - Your questions answered" leaflet. It answers most questions about emergency tax, such as:

Pensions are a form of saving for when you retire. When you reach a certain age or retire, a pension pays you a regular income for the rest of your life. To access a guide to the State Pension if you are a person who has come to work in the UK, are close to retirement age and want to find out how many years you must work in the UK before you can receive a pension, contact the Pension Service as each case is different.

The Inland Revenue tries to ensure that everyone gets what they are entitled to, pays what they owe and understands why, so that everyone contributes to the UK’s needs.

People in employment in the UK have to pay income tax, which their employee takes off their wages. The Inland Revenue tries to ensure that the correct amount of income tax and National Insurance contribution are taken from wages.
Everyone who works in the UK pays income tax on his or her salary. This is a legal requirement.

Welfare (4)

Child Benefit is a tax-free regular payment made to anyone bringing up a child or young person. It is paid for each child that qualifies and isn't affected by income or savings, so most people bringing up a child can get it.

Who is eligible?

You'll be able to get Child Benefit if you're bringing up:

A tax credit is a payment from the government to help with everyday living expenses. If you work for at least 16 hours a week but earn low wages, you may be eligible for this. If you are responsible for a child who normally lives with you, you may be eligible for this, regardless of whether you work or not. There are two types of Tax credits, working tax credits and child tax credits.

This is some very basic information about benefits.  There are a lot of rules and conditions to most benefits.  You should always get independent advice about what benefits you may be entitled to, and help filling in the form, either from the Job and Benefits Office, Citizen's Advice Bureau (CAB), or from another advice service. 

This is a test to see if you intend to make the your home in the UK. You need to pass this test to get certain benefits.

If you are making a claim for Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance or Housing Benefit you will need to pass the ‘habitual residence test’. The Habitual Residence Test checks to see if you have made the British Isles your normal home. This has to be in the UK, Ireland, Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.

Who doesn’t have to pass the test