Prizes/Awards

Payment in recognition of a past accomplishment.

Gross Up for Nonemployee Income

In certain situations, where University and department policies and budgets allow, administrators may wish to “gross up” an income payment to a recipient. The desired outcome may be intended to achieve a specific “net amount”, accounting for required tax withholdings. Gross up payments incur additional expense to the requesting department’s budget, which can be significant.


Reportable income payments processed to or for the benefit of individuals, are reportable for “gross up” amounts paid. Depending on income type and payment circumstances,...

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I received a request to complete GLACIER, but I won't be entering the U.S. because of a COVID related delay impacting travel or obtaining required immigration documents. What should I do?

If you are unable to complete your GLACIER record, and/or submit the requested GLACIER information as a result of a COVID related delay in being unable to enter the U.S., please instead do so immediately after your arrival to the U.S. This is necessary to maintain compliance with US tax and immigration regulations

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Making Payments

Use these guidelines to better understand payments to foreign individuals.

Harvard is required to follow:

  • Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations that govern the taxation of payments to nonresident aliens, which differ from those that govern payments to U.S. citizens and resident aliens; and
  • Regulations set by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) when making payments to certain foreign scholars and students

These regulations, which can be complicated, determine the tax status and proper procedure for...

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Payments

Whether receiving or making payments, Harvard guidelines and U.S. tax/immigration regulations will influence the end result, including how the payment will be taxed. There are various compliance issues of which to be mindful, and numerous laws by which to abide, that will collectively determine the direction one should take. Work authorization, income category, visa type, tax residency status, and tax treaty eligibility are some of the many factors that influence how a payment to a foreign national should be processed.

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Honorarium, Royalty, Prize, or Other Payment

The following are subject to a 30% tax withholding rate paid to nonresident aliens, in the absence of tax treaty benefits:

  • Honoraria, or payments made at the discretion of the University as compensation for professional services, including guest lectures. If honoraria and other performance-related payments from the University exceed $5000 per year, in the aggregate, the marginal earnings would also be subject to Massachusetts State tax of around 5.5%.
  • Independent contractor/consultant payments issued when Harvard is charged for the service....
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Tax Withholding on Payments

Payments from Harvard University may be subject to taxation in accordance with regulations strictly enforced by the U.S. tax authorities (IRS/MassDOR). Harvard collects, or withholds, two types of tax: Federal/State and Social Security/Medicare (FICA), liability for which is based on several factors:

  • Your U.S....
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