Postdoctoral Fellows – Stipendee Taxes

Research fellows paid with a stipend should be aware of the tax implications related to this form of payment. Since stipendee postdoctoral fellows are not employees of the university, income taxes will not be withheld from stipends.  In addition, the university’s contribution to a stipendee posdoc’s benefit plans must be treated as taxable income to the postdoc, i.e., imputed income.  The expectation is that postdocs who receive a stipend will make quarterly estimated federal and state tax payments. The university’s Tax Services Office provides information on the tax issues related to fellowship (stipend) payments.

Information related to estimated federal tax payments can be found on the website of the Internal Revenue Service.  Quarterly tax payments can be made online at  https://www.eftps.gov/eftps/

The Massachusetts Department of Revenue‘s website describes the policies and procedures for paying estimated taxes.  Online tax payments can be made at https://wfb.dor.state.ma.us/webfile/wsi/

Taxes will be withheld from stipends paid to international postdocs unless a tax treaty exists between the postdoc’s home country and the United States AND the postdoc has applied for the relevant tax treaty benefits.  Information regarding tax treaties and the forms needed to apply for a tax treaty benefit are available online at http://vpf-web.harvard.edu/ofs/tax_services/emp_tre.shtml