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Tax Treaty Renewal

Learn about renewing tax treaty exemptions for 2021 payments from UCSD

This page provides general information about the tax treaty renewal process and answers frequently asked questions.

UCSD uses the Glacier Online Nonresident Alien Tax Compliance System (Glacier) to determine residency status for tax purposes, tax treaty eligibility, and to generate tax treaty forms.

Tax treaties will not affect payments unless the user submits signed forms generated by Glacier and any required document copies to the Glacier & Taxation Team in the Payroll Division.

Frequently asked questions:

1. Why do I need to renew my tax treaty?

Some tax treaty forms expire at the end of the calendar year. In order to claim the treaty exemption for payments dated in 2021, you may need to renew your tax treaty through the Glacier Online Nonresident Alien Tax Compliance System (Glacier) and send new tax treaty forms to the Glacier & Taxation Team in the UC San Diego Payroll Division.

If you think you qualify for a tax treaty exemption, go through your Glacier record screen by screen. Glacier will determine your tax treaty eligibility, offer you any applicable treaty, and generate the forms you need to submit.

Payment types:

Fellowship (stipend) payments:  Graduate student fellowships (stipends) and postdoc fellowships are common examples fellowship payments. Without a treaty, fellowship payments to nonresident aliens on F or J status are subject to 14% federal tax withholding. Form W-8BEN is valid for three calendar years. No withholding is required on fellowship payments to resident aliens, so Glacier may show that you're treaty eligible without generating Form W-8BEN.

Salary/wage payments dated in 2021 will be subject to federal tax withholding even if you qualify for treaty exemption unless you renew your tax treaty. 

2. How do I renew my tax treaty at UCSD for 2021?

Follow the instructions in the November 9, 2020 "Income Tax Treaty Exemption Renewal (University of California, San Diego)" email from Glacier (

If you didn't get that email, follow the four steps below.

  1. Access Glacier (instructions below) and go through every screen in your Glacier record, updating as necessary. Do NOT change the date of entry to the U.S. If you qualify for a tax treaty exemption at the time of payment, Glacier will offer it to you. Either way, continue to the end of the record.  
  2. Review the forms Glacier generates at the end. . 
  3. Digitally sign and date the forms Glacier generates.
    1. Form 8233: "sign here" in Section III: Certification on page 2 of the form. If you sign the withholding agent section the form is invalid. It's o.k. if box 11b of this form is incorrect.
    2. Form W-8BEN: "sign here" line
    3. Form W-9 "signature of U.S. person" line. If Glacier generated this form for you, it means you will be a resident for tax purposes for at least part of 2021. Glacier generates only page 1 of Form W-9. Page 2 states, "For federal tax purposes, you are considered a U.S. person if you are an individual who is a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien." 
  4. Create a single pdf of the signed forms and any document copies Glacier requests.
  5. Email the pdf from your account to the UCSD Payroll and Taxation Team at Emails between two UCSD email addresses are secure. Note the Payroll Division is closed for in-person business; we are all working remotely.

3. What's the deadline for treaty renewal?

You can submit 2021 tax treaties and treaty renewals anytime.

  • Documents received on or before November 22, 2020 will be processed in time to affect your first 2021 payment.
  • Documents arriving after November 22 will be processed, but perhaps not in time to affect your first 2021 payments. No matter when you submit 2021 tax treaty forms, upon review UCPath will recalculate your 2021 pay to include the treaty. The turnaround time for that might be as long as 4 weeks.

4. How do I access my UCSD Glacier record?

To access GLACIER:

Click on the following web link:

  1. Click on the Glacier logo to enter the website.
  1. At the login screen, enter the UserID and Password you selected at the time you first accessed your UCSD Glacier record. If you can’t remember them, click on "Forgot Login" and enter the email address associated with your Glacier record.

If you still can't log on, email the UCSD Glacier & Taxation Team with your full name and ucsd email address. Use the subject "send Glacier access." There's no need to add text to the email.

5. I did not get a tax treaty renewal email. What should I do?

That's o.k. It's just a reminder. Follow the instructions in question 1 (above.)

6. How do I submit the Glacier forms and, if applicable, required document copies?

See step 4 in question 1, above.


7. Glacier did not generate all of the tax treaty forms listed above. Why?

Glacier generates only the forms that apply to you. Residency status and income type affect which forms Glacier will generate. Some countries have salary/wage and fellowship treaties, some countries have only one of those, and some countries have no treaties at all.

  • Form 8233 is for nonresident aliens eligible to claim a tax treaty exemption on income classified as wages. It is valid for one calendar year only; all Forms 8233 expire on December 31. If you'll be a resident alien for part of 2021, Glacier will also generate Form W-9.
  • Form W-9 for those who will be "residents for tax purposes" for all or part of the next calendar year. Form W-9 does not expire. It requires the signature of a U.S. person, which is you. Per page 2 of Form W-9, "you are considered a U.S. person if you are an individual who is a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien."
  • Glacier generates Form W-8BEN for nonresident aliens who are eligible to claim a tax treaty exemption on income classified as fellowship (often referred to as stipend.) Form W-8BEN will not be generated for resident aliens and U.S. citizens, as no tax withholding is required.


8. Form W-9 requires the signature of a U.S. person, but I'm not a U.S. citizen.

Sign the form.

"For federal tax purposes, you are considered a U.S. person if you are an individual who is a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien." -Form W-9, page 2.

9. What if I do not want to claim a tax treaty?

Choose “no…” on the Glacier screen that offers the treaty. Continue to the end, print the forms Glacier generates, sign them, and then create a pdf of the signed forms and the required document copies listed in the bottom right section of the Glacier Tax Summary Report. Email the pdf from your email address to the UCSD Glacier & Taxation team

10. I will not get payment or benefits from UCSD next year. Do I need to do anything?

Some payments for December are made in January of the following year. Federal tax will be withheld from those payments unless you submit your tax treaty renewal documents by November 30.

  • Monthly wages earned in December 2020 will be paid January 4, 2021.
  • Biweekly wages earned after December 13 will be paid in January 2021.

If you will not receive 2021 payments or benefits from UCSD, email the Glacier & Taxation team.

11. Glacier didn't offer me a treaty. Why?

You may be treaty-eligible, but if there is any doubt about whether you qualify for a treaty or not, UCSD will not facilitate it at the time of payment. You can claim it on your U.S. federal tax return. If the IRS grants the treaty, they will refund the tax covered by the treaty.

There are several reasons that Glacier may not offer a treaty to which you are entitled.

 Other reasons that Glacier may not offer a treaty:

  • Your country doesn't have a tax treaty for the type of payments you're getting from UCSD.
  • The treaty time limit has passed
  • Some treaties include a clause limiting the length of stay in the U.S. For example, the treaties for wage payments to teachers and researchers from India or the UK are limited to those who will stay two years or less. If the individual stays in the U.S. even one day beyond the limit, the tax exemption is lost for the entire visit. Therefore, if a teacher/researcher from India indicates in Glacier that he plans to stay for three years, Glacier will not offer the treaty.
  • Some treaties contain a back-to-back clause, so if you've indicated that you previously claimed the treaty for one type of income, you can't claim it for another type the next year.
  • Some treaties are only available to those whose income in the calendar year will be less than a certain amount. If you indicate in your Glacier record that you expect to receive income greater than the income limit, the system will not offer a treaty exemption.
  • Your countries of citizenship, tax residence, and permanent residence are not identical. You may be eligible for a tax treaty exemption, but UCSD will not grant it at the time of payment. You will be able to claim it on your 2021 U.S. federal tax return.
  • You’ve reached the time limit of the treaty.
  • You indicated in Glacier that your immigration status expires in 2020.
  • You indicated in Glacier that you plan to leave the U.S. in 2020.

12. What if my forms are late (after November 30)?

See item 3, above.

13. What if I'm living and working outside the United States?

If you're a nonresident alien living and working outside the U.S. you do not need to file tax treaty forms until you return to the U.S., but do follow these steps if you haven't already done so.

  1. Access your Glacier record and click the "I do  not currently live in the U.S. / I do not have a U.S. mailing address." Glacier will generate a foreign-sourced income statement for you to digitally sign and submit to the Glacier & Taxation Team.
  2. Submit an out of state tax form and another Foreign Sourced Income Statement in the UCPath payroll system*. Along the left side, choose Help/FAQ > Self Service Users > PHCMPOR113: Employee Actions: International Hire > Complete the Foreign Source Income Statement form > Complete the Out-Of-State Income Tax Withholding form.

*UCPath access:  Click the "Click to Login" button on UCSD's UCPath page.  If this is your first time loggin in, see First Time in UCPath  

Note: U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and residents for tax purposes are subject to U.S. federal tax withholding no matter where they live or work. 

14. Where can I find out more?

US. tax law reference:

UC San Diego Blink pages

Email the UCSD Glacier & Taxation Team for more information.