International Payees

General Background and Section Contents

This section provides guidance to members of the NEC community who desire to retain the services of international students and visitors and process related payments for services rendered, scholarships, or reimbursement of expenses. All arrangements and payments for such services must be made in accordance with the regulations established by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and the proper taxes must be withheld. In order to protect international payees’ status in the U.S., they are responsible for complying with the terms of their visas and associated payment restrictions as well. 

NEC analyzes foreign visitors’ tax liabilities and possible treaty exemptions based on the various factors provided by foreign visitors.  These factors are used to analyze tax requirements and exemptions that result from treaties between the U.S. and other countries.  Examples of these factors include the individual’s immigration history in the U.S., type of visa, tax residency status, student types, types of income earned in the U.S., etc.

Please note that no one from any NEC department can give personal tax advice, or represent an individual dealing with the IRS while in their official role at NEC.  

There are separate sections below for:

  • NEC international students
  • NEC international faculty and staff (NEC-sponsored visa holders)
  • International visitors with tourist visas (B-1, business purpose and B-2, tourist purpose) and visa waivers (for tourist purpose (VWT) and for business purpose (VWB) including Canadian visitors
  • International visitors with non-NEC sponsored visas

NEC International Students 

    NEC international students may be employed on campus, if they obtain the necessary certification, and may also receive three types of scholarships and grants:

  • Qualified Scholarships: Amounts received as scholarship grants that cover tuition and fees required to be paid for instruction at the educational institution. Qualified scholarships are not reportable.
  • Non-Qualified Scholarships: Amounts issued for any other purpose besides instruction at the educational institution, including travel, room and board.  Non-qualified scholarships are subject to 14% federal tax withholding. A tax treaty between the U.S. and another country may apply that would make a non-qualified scholarship exempt from taxes. Non-qualified scholarships are reportable on Form 1042-S. 
  • Grants, Fellowships, and Graduate Assistantships: Grants, fellowships, and graduate assistantships can be treated as qualified scholarships, non-qualified scholarships, or wages depending on the conditions associated with the payment (e.g., whether any types of services are required to be performed in conjunction with the grant, fellowship, or graduate assistantship). 
  • On-Campus Employment: For on-campus employment, please review the Financial Aid Office’s on-campus employment website.

NEC International Faculty and Staff (NEC-Sponsored Visa Holders) 

The most common NEC sponsored visas are F-1 (most international students), J-1 (exchange students), H-1 (temporary work), and O-1 (artists).

  • New Hire Process: Please contact the Human Resources to complete all necessary paperwork
  • All new international employees need to complete the Foreign National Information Form (FNI).

NEC International Visitors with Tourist Visas (B-1 and B-2) and Visa Waivers (VWT and VWB) including Canadian Visitors

Individuals in the U.S. with B-1 (visitor for business), B-2 (visitor for pleasure), VWB (visa waiver for business purpose), and VWT (visa waiver for tourist purpose) status, and Entry Without Inspection status from Canada, can receive honoraria payments and incidental travel or other expense reimbursement for "usual academic activity or activities" paid by an institution of higher education or a related or affiliated nonprofit entity per the American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act of 1998. Usual academic activity includes lecturing, teaching, sharing knowledge, performing, teaching master classes, performing readings, and attending meetings of boards or committees that benefit the institution.  In order to receive an honorarium or reimbursement for travel and/or incidental expenses, international visitors must meet the following conditions.

  • Prior to Inviting International Visitors: It is the hosting department’s responsibility to ensure that international visitors are eligible to receive any types of payment from NEC.  
  • Honoraria/Travel reimbursement for B-1, B-2, VWB and VWT (9-6-5 Rule)
    • The activity must last no longer than 9 days at any single institution; 
    • The individual may have received honoraria from 5 or fewer institutions in the last 6 months, but from no more than 5 institutions; AND 
    • The payment must relate to a service that the international visitor is performing for NEC that is considered to be a usual academic activity such as teaching, research, or public service.
    • Need to complete Form CI-1 (For NEC International Visitors with Tourist Visa and Visa Waiver Holders)

NEC International Visitors with Non-NEC Sponsored Visas

The most common non-NEC sponsored visas are F-1 visas from other institutions (e.g., international students from other universities), J-1 visas (e.g., exchange students and scholars from other universities), H-1 visas (e.g., international faculty/staff from other universities), O-1 visas (e.g., international artists from the Boston Symphony Orchestra or other performing arts organizations), P-2 visas (e.g., international musicians’ “groups” that will perform in the U.S. based on the itinerary that was included with their U.S. immigration petition), and Q-1 visas (international cultural exchange visitors). Non-NEC sponsored visa holders must have valid immigration documents to receive honoraria payments from NEC.

  • Prior to Inviting International Visitors
    • It is the hosting department’s responsibility to ensure that international visitors are eligible to receive any types of payments from NEC
  • J-1 or F-1 Visas from Non-NEC Sponsored Visitors
    • Honoraria/travel reimbursement: An international visitor may be able to receive an honorarium if they can provide work authorization at NEC endorsed on their Form I-20 or Form DS2010 or other valid immigration documents (e.g., work authorization, EAD).
    • Need to complete the Form CI-2 (For NEC International Visitors with NEC sponsored and eligible non-sponsored Visa Holders)
  • O, P and Q Visas from Non-NEC Sponsored Visitors
    • Honoraria/travel reimbursement: An international visitor may be able to receive an honorarium if their immigration petition specifically includes activities at NEC (e.g., performance schedule, itinerary, etc.)
    • Need to complete the Form CI-2 (For NEC International Visitors with NEC sponsored and eligible non-sponsored Visa Holders)

Contact Information

For all international tax questions: 
Kristina Martin, Director of Finance & Controller
617-585-1725
Kristina.Martin@necmusic.edu