A W-4 form tells your employer the amount of Income tax to withhold from your paycheck.
Employees who are interested can perform a “paycheck checkup” to verify their current withholdings. To conduct such a checkup, use the IRS Tax Withholding Estimator tool. Before you begin using the estimator, we recommend having a copy of your most recent pay stub and tax return available.
For those who are completing Form W-4:
Tufts and the IRS take your privacy seriously and suggest that, if you are worried about reporting income from multiple jobs in Step 2 or other income in Step 4(a), please check the box in Step 2(c) or enter an additional withholding amount in Step 4(c). To determine the additional withholding amount, you can use the withholding estimator. Alternatively, another tool to help you determine what your net pay would be, after any tax or benefit changes, is the Paycheck Modeler in eServe. To access this tool, log into eServe and from the Employee Self Service portal, click Payroll and Compensation. On the left-hand menu, click Paycheck Modeler and follow the onscreen instructions.Making Changes
- Please read the instructions that are included with the form;
- Complete Steps 1 and 5; Step 1 is for your personal information and Step 5 is where you electronically sign
- Steps 2, 3, and 4 are optional, but completing them will help ensure that your federal income tax withholding will more accurately match your tax liability. Step 2 is for households with multiple jobs; Step 3 is used to claim tax credits for dependents; Step 4 is for other adjustments (additional income such as interest & dividends, itemized deductions that exceed the standard deduction, and extra tax you want withheld) Consider referencing the IRS published Frequently Asked Questions.
There is no limit on the number of times you can update your W-4 in Employee Self Service but changes are limited to once per day. Changes are never retroactive and will be effective immediately and reflected on the next paycheck provided the change is made prior to TSS running that payroll cycle. Submitting a new W4 replaces the previous W4 information.
NOTE that there are two sections: Federal and State. They are separate and not related, but display on the same page, and both must be updated.
Tufts University cannot assist with the processing of a W-4, as we do not offer tax advice. If you need help, we recommend talking to your tax professional.
This pulls up your current tax information. You can change your information here to what you wish to claim, and click "submit" at the bottom of the page. You can only do this once a day.
- Go to eServe, sign in with Tufts credentials make sure you are on Employee Self Service at the top of the page.
- Click on “Paycheck and Compensation”
- Click on "W-4, W-2, W-2 Consent"
- Click on “W-4 Tax Information”
- Note this can be done for Federal and/or State, but each must be entered separately
You can claim an exemption from tax withholding if you had no income tax liability last year and expect the same this year.
The exempt status for the previous year typically expires on February 15th of the following year.
- If you are a faculty/staff claiming exempt from Income Tax you need to submit a paper form.
- Students and temps can claim tax exempt online instead of a paper form. Under the State section, they must put an “X” for Marital Status.
- A Foreign National will see the option to claim exempt, but this is actually not an option. A Foreign National can only be exempt from Income Tax if the Tax Treaty Analysis provides for it.
Live In versus Work In State for State Taxation
We are required to withhold taxes in the state in which you are working. Since the University is in MA and most employees are working in MA, the State You Work In and Live In defaults to MA. Staff, Faculty, and Temps who want to change either the Work In or Live In State, must contact TSS and report what work you are doing for Tufts in that Other State so that we can approve and adjust. EServe will appear to allow you to change the State, but once you hit Submit and return to the page, it will still display MA even though your changes have been registered.
The Work In State and Live In State for a Student will also default to MA since both are intended to be the address in which work is performed and not the parents' or permanent address.
If you are having technical difficulties, please contact Tufts Technology Services (TTS), they will be able to help. You can contact them at 617-627-3376 or through email at https://access.tufts.edu/get-work-done#It-request between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
Please make sure you have logged into eServe through the link at AccessTufts rather than a link you may have saved somewhere else. If you do use an old link, you may be prompted for your password, which will then not be accepted! If this happens, please make sure you are using the correct link and you may need to clear your cache/cookies or use a different browser and the correct link!