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Tax Determination & Withholding Information

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires employers to apply U.S. withholding and reporting rules consistent with the nonimmigrant employed person’s U.S. tax status (resident alien or nonresident alien).  Resident aliens are taxed like U.S. citizens, while nonresident aliens are taxed under different withholding and reporting rules.  Your U.S. tax status depends on your U.S. immigration status and length of U.S. presence. 

Nonresidents may be entitled to tax exemptions depending on their U.S. tax status or an applicable tax treaty, or both.  International students and scholars on Brown University payroll or scholar/fellowship recipients have free access to a computerized database called the Foreign National Information System (FNIS).

Since immigration status and U.S. presence may change the way a person is taxed, international students and scholars are requested to complete and provide electronically a form (via FNIS) with accurate up-to-date information at the time of the initial appointment and then again at the beginning of each calendar year. This will enable the University to verify the correct taxation status and any applicable tax exemptions.  Without this information, the University will not be able to provide any tax exemptions which might otherwise be applicable.

FNIS Instructions (PDF)