TSS - International Employees – Tax Treaties

International Employees – Tax Treaties

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First Published  :Mon Dec 01 16:46:56 GMT 2014
Last Modified  :Thu Mar 24 14:53:24 GMT 2022
Last Published  :Thu Mar 24 14:53:24 GMT 2022
Summary :  Reference for all international employees who have general questions about taxes and tax treaties. Audience: International Employees


Primary Information

    Tax treaties may allow residents of foreign countries to be taxed at a reduced rate, or to be exempt from U.S. Income (Federal and State Withholding) taxes on certain items of income they receive from sources within the United States. Read IRS Publication 901 for a list of countries that have tax treaties with the US, and associated information (charts/tables beginning on page 35). Tax treaties do not include FICA (Medicare and Social Security taxes), but employees could also be exempt for these taxes through the IRS Code and regulations. Both types of exemptions (whether Income or FICA) are determined through the same Foreign National tax analysis, but this Article discusses Tax Treaties for Income Taxes specifically.
    A completed foreign national form and the following accompanying documentation is required for a tax analysis to know if you are eligible for treaty benefits:
    1. Signed Foreign National Form
    2. Passport
    3. Form I-20, or Form DS-2019, or Form I-797
    4. Entry Visa
    5. Port of Entry Stamp
    6. Electronic I-94
    7. Electronic I-94 Travel History

    The tax analysis takes about 2 weeks to complete.  NOTE:  We do not complete a tax analysis for individuals holding a green card.
    IRS Form 8233 is the treaty document and will indicate for which treaty benefits a Non-Resident Alien student or employee is eligible.  Form 8233 always expires on December 31st of any given tax year.  These must be filled out every year in order for Tufts to implement treaty benefits. The IRS requires Form 8233 to have an original signature on it.  A completed Form 8233 is three pages long and has a signature on page 2 and also page 3.  The Payroll Tax Accountant will fill in the 8233 and send it to students/employees on the secure FNIS portal.  Please print it from there and mail or bring in the original.  If an address needs to be updated on the Form 8233, please notify the Payroll Tax Accountant in TSS.

    A 1042-S from Payroll is an annual statement similar to a W-2 for those who have tax treaty benefits.  It will be a statement of how much income was covered by a tax treaty for a specific tax year. The 1042-S is issued for payments that are exempt from a treaty and therefore anything over the treaty amount is taxed and reported on the W-2, so a Foreign National may receive BOTH a 1042-S Payroll AND a W2.  A 1042-S from Payroll is needed to file taxes and are due to employees by March 15th and is available for viewing through FNIS. Foreign Nationals are advised not to file taxes until the 1042-S is received.  An Non-Resident Alien student may have multiple 1042-S forms as Accounts Payable also issues 1042-S statements for scholarships (unless scholarship is specified as 'outside U.S.' in which case no 1032S is issued).   A foreign national should only receive a 1042-S from AP never a 1099. When a tax treaty is exceeded in AP, the additional amounts become taxable and are reported on a separate 1042-S. 

    Please contact TSS with tax-related questions.  Visit our Foreign Nationals checklist for more information.
    To update your tax withholdings, please log in to Employee Self Service.


    Please note that Tufts cannot provide advice or assistance in completing tax forms.  The International Center has Sprintax Tax Prep software to assist you filing your tax return with the Federal and State Governments.  The International Center will email Access Codes to the eligible users by March. Once the user has the Access Code, he/she can register to use the software at https://global.tufts.edu/international-center/taxes-and-social-security/tax-preparation-and-assistancesprintax. If a user did not receive the Access Code, please direct him/her to the International Center.

    Additional information about the Sprintax Tax Prep software is located on the International Center website. If a user did not receive the Access Code, please direct him/her to the International Center. The International Center and Tufts Support Services are not in a position to offer tax advice.  If you have specific tax questions or concerns, you will need to contact a tax professional (either a Certified Public Accountant or Tax Attorney).  Other tools to assist you in filing your taxes are the Internal Revenue Service website (www.irs.gov) and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue website (www.mass.gov/dor).


Related Information

    Link to Employee Self Service: https://access.tufts.edu/eserve




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