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. 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 accompanying documentation (Passport, Visa, I-94, I20/DS2019) is required for a tax analysis to know if you are eligible for treaty benefits. The tax analysis takes about 2 weeks to complete.
8233 is the treaty document and will indicate what treaty benefits an NRA student or employee is eligible for. 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 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.
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. 1042-S Payroll are needed to file taxes and are due to employees on March 15th and are available for viewing on FNIS. Foreign Nationals are advised not to file taxes until the 1042-S is received.
An NRA 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 tax prep software to assist you filing your tax return with the Federal and State Governments. Additional information about the web based software is located on the International Center website (http://ase.tufts.edu/icenter/taxes/preparation.asp). 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).
Tufts Support Services Contact Information:
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