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U.S. Tax Requirements for Foreign Visitors

Foreign visitors to the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center may be subject to income tax on income or other benefits received while at the University. Payments which may be taxable include employee wages, fellowship and scholarship payments among others.

A general rule of U.S. tax law is that wages are taxed unless specifically exempted.

Income tax on employee wages is withheld at the graduated rates mandated by law. That means tax tables are used withholding different amounts of tax pending on the taxable amount of wages.  This is also known as federal and state tax withholding.

Wages may also be subject to 7.65% FICA tax (also known as Social Security and Medicare tax). FICA is a different type of tax and is in addition to federal and state tax withheld from pay.

Tax treaties exist between the United States and about 70 other countries and some include exemption for certain foreign visitors for a specified length of time and/or certain dollar amount.  Please keep in mind that even if a treaty exists between the U.S. and your country of Tax Residency, it does not necessarily mean you are exempt from tax withholding on U.S. wages. Applicable exemptions can be determined once you are in the U.S. and complete the Foreign National Information form.

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