Hosting Foreign Guests

Here’s what you need to know if you plan to host foreign speakers and/or participants at your event AND pay or reimburse them for participating in the activity:

BEFORE YOUR GUESTS ARRIVE

Before you make a promise to pay, ask your guest for their visa type.  Foreign guests with certain visa types may not receive any payments during their visit.  There are no exceptions. Check the Payroll Office website for a detailed list of Visa Classifications and Work Authorization.

Determine if your guest will need a GLACIER record. These visa types will need a GLACIER record: A, B, E, F, H, J, K, L, O, P, TN, WB, and WTV.  Foreign guests with U.S. permanent resident, refugee, or asylum status pending will need a GLACIER record.  Your guest will not need a GLACIER if they will receive only a travel expense reimbursement.

Complete the Initial GLACIER Information Form for each foreign guest who needs a GLACIER record.  You may complete this form before your guest arrives.  Explain to your guest that U.S. tax laws require the University to collect information regarding tax status and that GLACIER is the method used for this purpose. Send a copy of the GLACIER Information Form to your guest and let them know that they will be receiving an email from support@online-tax.net with their GLACIER password and login instructions.

Does your guest already have a Social Security Number or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number?  Your guest may be eligible for an ITIN if they will receive a taxable payment and are from a tax treaty country and wish to claim a federal tax exemption.  It takes approximately six weeks for the IRS to process an application.  Most of your guests will not need a taxpayer identification number. Click here for ITIN application instructions.

Budget Tip - Consider extending a courtesy to your foreign guests by assuming the withholding taxes levied on their payments. Specify a net payment on your request and include these extra costs in your event budget: 

Example: Net $500 honoraria = guest receives the full $500.  Your actual expenditure will be $650, or $500 net payment plus $150 federal tax of 30%.  If your payment is $1,500 or more, add additional state withholding tax of 7%.

WHEN YOUR GUESTS ARE HERE

If your guest has a GLACIER record – obtain a copy of their I-94 form, visa stamp on their passport, and a completed Wire Transfer Request form.  If they will receive travel expense reimbursement, collect copies of receipts and have them sign the Traveler’s Certification Statement on a Travel Expense Report form.

If your guest does NOT have a GLACIER record – have them complete the Certificate of Foreign Status for Federal Tax Withholding (UC W-8BEN) form and the Certification of Academic Activity (COAA) form.  Obtain a copy of their I-94 form, visa stamp on their passport, and a completed Wire Transfer Request form.  If they will receive travel expense reimbursement, collect copies of receipts and have them sign the Traveler’s Certification Statement on a Travel Expense Report form.

You will need to attach these documents and copies to your requests for payment or reimbursement to your foreign guests.  More information is available on the Business Services webpages, Paying Foreign Individuals and Suppliers, International Wire Transfers, and Getting Reimbursed.