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Procedures for Payments Made to or on Behalf of International Students, Visitors and Vendors

General Information

All payments made to or on behalf of an international visitor, student or supplier have potential tax considerations requiring special attention. Additional processing time is required for transactions involving foreign visitors, vendors and students.

It is recommended to contact Tax Reporting at prior to processing payments to international taxpayers.

Types of Payments Requiring Special Attention

Examples of payments to foreign visitors, students and suppliers requiring special handling include but are not limited to:

  • Stipends and fellowships
  • Payments for services
  • Travel payments for international visitors
  • Travel payments for international students
  • Payments for software
  • Royalty payments
  • Payments to U.S. agents representing international performers
  • Payments to foreign agents or performers
  • P-Card payments to international companies

All payments made to or on behalf of international students and visitors must comply with regulations established by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Note: The University may be unable to make a payment (including expense reimbursements) to an international visitor if their visa does not allow such payments.

The information contained in this document applies to individuals classified by the USCIS as other than U.S. citizens or permanent residents (green card holders).

It is critical to determine if the visa classification and other circumstances related to the international visitor allow for payment of any kind. Do not pre-pay travel expenses for international visitors using a P-card or direct payment without prior approval from Tax Reporting. Most travel payments for international visitors must be processed as expense reimbursements because verification of valid visa status and legal entry in the U.S. cannot be confirmed until after the visitor enters the country.

Note: Individuals cannot pay international visitors with personal funds and then request reimbursement from the University.

Documentation Required

Travel Reimbursements and Honorarium payments – International Visitors

Visitors must be eligible to receive travel reimbursements based on visa status. Visitors should enter the U.S. in a business status, not tourist status. Please instruct your visitor of the business visit requirement. Departments should provide the visitor with a letter of invitation that includes a business purpose for the trip. Travel reimbursements must conform to the Boise State travel policy to be exempt from tax reporting and withholding.

The following visitor documentation must be obtained prior to the international visitor’s departure from Boise State:

  • Copy of Passport (with picture)
  • Copy of Passport stamp showing admittance and departure date for Boise State visit
  • Copy of Visa – where applicable
  • I-94
    • An I-94 is required for all visitors
    • The I-94 document may be obtained from the US Customs and Border Protection website
  • Individuals who are present in the U.S. in a status other than Visa Waiver or B1/B2 may be required to present additional documents.
  • Completion of PaymentWorks record

Important information for Honorarium Payments

Visitor must be eligible to receive honorarium payments based on visa status and American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act (ACWIA) of 1998 requirements. The ACWIA requirements are:

  • Visitor must be present under a B-1 visa or WB waiver for business
  • Payment must be for “usual academic activity” defined as lecturing, teaching, sharing knowledge, attending meetings of boards or committees
  • Activity must last no longer than 9 days at a single institution
  • Individual may not accept honoraria from more than five institutions within a six- month period

Please confirm with your visitor that they are able to meet the ACWIA requirements prior to committing to an honorarium payment.

All payments of honorarium require tax reporting and potentially tax withholding. Boise State uses a third-party database called Sprintax Calculus for tax reporting purposes. Individuals who receive honorarium payments will be required to complete a Sprintax Calculus tax record and sign all applicable tax forms.

Sprintax Calculus

The following individuals require a Sprintax Calculus record.

  • All international visitors who receive honorarium payments, fee for service or taxable travel payments
  • International students who receive taxable travel, scholarship, or fellowship payments
  • All international employees

Sprintax Calculus is an online tax compliance software used to make tax residency and income tax treaty determinations. Payments will not be made before the Sprintax Calculus record for the individual is completed.

How to set up a Sprintax Calculus Record

  • Email
  • Include visitor name and email address
  • If payment is made to a Boise State student, provide name and student ID number
  • The student/visitor will receive an email request from with log in information and instructions to complete the record
  • The visitor completes the record, and e-signs the tax forms
  • The individual also needs to let the Tax Reporting know once complete, so the forms and the record can be reviewed


Generally, the following types of payments to international students, visitors and suppliers will have tax withheld:

  • Fees for service and honorariums when activity is conducted in the U.S. – subject to 30% tax withholding
  • Travel expense reimbursements that do not conform to Boise State travel policy – subject to 30% tax withholding
  • Performance fees paid to third parties (U.S. or foreign) representing international individuals/groups – subject to 30% tax withholding
  • Scholarship payments – are subject to 14% tax withholding for international students under F, J, M or Q status; 30% tax withholding for international visitors or students under all other visa categories
  • Payments for license agreements (software, access to data, etc.) – subject to up to 30% tax withholding
  • Payments for online services, if service performed inside the U.S. or supplier’s server is located in the U.S. – subject to 30% tax withholding
  • Royalty payments (for use of artwork, music or other copyrighted material) – subject to up to 30% tax withholding
  • Prizes or awards (cash and non-cash, no de minimus amount) – subject to 30% tax withholding

Additional Information

Payments to Foreign Suppliers

A W-8 (there are several types of W-8s) form is required for all foreign suppliers. Do not request the Vendor Information Form (VIF) from a foreign vendor. You will need to send the foreign vendor/individual an invitation to PaymentWorks and submit the payment request as an invoice payment into Bronco Hub.

Payments to Third Party Vendors

Payments to third party vendors (i.e. airline, hotel, conference vendors) on an international student or visitor’s behalf are considered a payment directly to the international student or visitor. Immigration documentation from the visitor is required and must be obtained prior to payment. On rare occasions, third party payments may be made on a student or visitor’s behalf. These payments must be approved by the Tax Reporting department prior to making a payment. Please contact

Job Candidates

International individuals who enter the United States for the purpose of a job interview may be reimbursed for expenses.
There will be no tax withholding or reporting as long as no services to Boise State University are performed by the candidate during their visit. Expenses must also comply with Boise State travel policy and the payment request (along with all supporting documentation) must be submitted within 60 days of the end of the visit.

Travel Expenses – International Students

Paying for international student travel expenses may be considered a taxable payment to the student. The purpose of the travel will determine whether the payment is subject to tax. Prior to making any payment, the department needs to email with all the details and information so we can make an informed decision.

Departments paying travel expenses for student employees where the travel is directly related to the student’s job duties, the payment is a business expense and is not subject to nonresident alien taxes. The financial support for the travel needs to have a legitimate and work-related business purpose. The following criteria needs to be met to be considered a legitimate business expense.

  • The student must be employed as a graduate assistant or a student employee at Boise State University
  • The travel must be a job requirement, primarily for the benefit of the University
  • If the travel is associated with work on a grant, then:
    • The student must be working on a grant contract and
    • The student’s participation should include activities such as submittal and/or presentation of a research paper, participation in round table discussions or sharing knowledge or technology by other means.

If the student’s participation primarily benefits the student (e.g., the student attends the conference to learn/to be trained for his/her own study or research), the payment or reimbursement of expenses is treated as a taxable scholarship payment to the student. If the payment is determined to be a scholarship, the student will be required to complete a Calculus record. The record must be completed prior to any travel expenses being paid directly to the student or paid on behalf of the student (i.e. direct payment or P-Card payment). If it is applicable, tax charge will be applied at the student’s account.

P-Card Payments to Foreign Vendors

Payments to a foreign vendor using a P-Card may incur additional tax charged to the department. The nature and location of the transaction will determine the tax reporting and withholding requirements. Ideally, a W-8BEN-E form should be obtained from the entity prior to making a P-Card payment to a foreign vendor. Forms should be sent to Tax Reporting who will determine tax withholding requirements. Departments who make a taxable payment using the P-Card will be charged an additional 43% to cover tax withholding and interest.

Payments to International Artists/Agents and U.S. Agents of International Artists

See the Tax Considerations International Artists and Entertainers document on Procurement and Vendor Services’ website.

For more information, visit Procurement and Vendor Services’ Suppliers website.