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ISSS-BU News 10 December 2012 ISSS-BU News


An electronic news service for international students and scholars, owned by the Office of International Student and Scholar Services atBinghamtonUniversity, State University of New York

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Editor’s Note:

Please note that on Wednesday, December 12, the Office of International Student and Scholar Services will be closed from 11:45am to 1:30pm for a worker appreciation luncheon. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Classes for the Fall 2012 semester end this Friday, December 14. ISSS-BU wishes all of our student subscribers success with their academic work as the semester draws to a close.

Graduating this month? We hope to see you at the International Student Graduation Reception on Saturday, December 15. Please see article number 1 for the link to the response form.

CONTENTS:

1. International Student Fall 2012 Graduation Reception This Saturday, December 15

2. ISSS Operational Hours to the Public Change on Monday, December 24

3. Traveling During Intersession? Not Returning for the Spring 2013 Semester?

4. Graduating in May 2013? Planning to Register Less Than Full-Time?

5. Holiday Curtailment Period for International Student and Scholar Services

6. Paychecks and Direct Deposit Advices during Semester Break

7. Annual Wage Statement Form W-2

8. Spring 2013 Job and Internship Fair: Thursday, January 31st from 11:00am to 3:30pm in the Events Center

9. Income Tax Issues

1. International Student Fall 2012 Graduation Reception This Saturday, December 15

Students who are graduating or completing their programs at the end of the Fall 2012 semester have been invited to attend the fifth annual Fall International Student Graduation Reception on Saturday, December 15, 2012 in University Union Susquehanna Old Union Hall. Friday was the posted deadline for responding, but we will continue to accept replies beyond today to our on-line form. Go to: http://www.binghamton.edu/isss/gradreception/invite.html to let the ISSS staff know that you will be attending.

2. ISSS Operational Hours to the Public Change on Monday, December 24

Beginning Monday, December 24 and continuing through Friday, January 18, many University offices will operate with reduced hours. For the ISSS, hours to the public during this time period will be weekdays from 9:30am to 3:45pm, except Wednesdays, when the hours will be 11:30am to 3:45pm. Phones will be answered from 8:00am to 4:00pm weekdays. The ISSS will resume regular academic year operational hours on Tuesday, January 22.

3. Traveling During Intersession? Not Returning for the Spring 2013 Semester?

We want to remind our readers that there is a wealth of travel information on the ISSS website. Just use this link to visit the Travel index:
http://www2.binghamton.edu/isss/travel/index.html

Here are our picks:
Travel Check List
Taking a Cruise?
Travel Plans for Thanksgiving or Intersession
Travel to Canada
ISSS-BU News Travel Extra

Also, if you are not returning to Binghamton for the Spring 2013 semester, you must complete the required departure form at: http://saffairs.binghamton.edu/isss/webforms/DepartureForm/

4. Graduating in May 2013? Planning to Register Less Than Full-Time?

Undergraduate students who will be graduating at the end of the Spring 2013 semester and plan to register for less than a full-time course load because they need fewer than full-time credits to graduate must complete a "Request for a Reduced Course Load Due to Course Completion" form, available in the ISSS or by downloading the form from the web at:

http://www2.binghamton.edu/isss/essential-forms/study_comp.pdf

Graduate students who are graduating at the end of Spring 2013 and are registered for a course rubric that cannot be certified as full time must also complete this form.

5. Holiday Curtailment Period for International Student and Scholar Services

The Office of International Student and Scholar Services, along with most other university offices, will be participating in what is traditionally known at the University as the "holiday curtailment" period. The official holiday curtailment starts at the close of business at 3:45pm on Monday, December 24, 2012 with ISSS re-opening on Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 9:30am. During this period, there will be no mail delivery into or out of offices. Voice mail, e-mail and fax will be monitored periodically, but not every day.

International students and scholars who have paperwork that needs to be processed by the ISSS should note these dates and anticipate that after Friday, December 21, there will be a wait until January 2 before work resumes. It is strongly recommended that any requests for documents be made no later than December 14 to assure timely processing. Remember not to wait until the last minute!

6. Paychecks and Direct Deposit Advices during Semester Break

This year, there is no faculty/staff/graduate assistant payday during the period between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Questions regarding paycheck or direct deposit advice distribution should be directed to the Payroll Distribution Center 607-777-6284.

7. Annual Wage Statement Form W-2

Annual W-2 statements of earnings will be mailed directly to faculty, staff and student employee home addresses in January 2013. Human Resources needs to confirm that home addresses are correct in its systems to ensure the mailing is successful. HR asks that all faculty, staff and students check the address as recorded on their paycheck to be sure it is accurate. If you need to make any changes, report this to your department and it will submit the necessary Oracle personal data change form. Otherwise, print this form at http://www2.binghamton.edu/human-resources/forms/forms-doc-files/Address_Change.pdf, complete it and send it to Human Resources, AD-244.

8. Spring 2013 Job and Internship Fair: Thursday, January 31st from 11:00am to 3:30pm in the Events Center

That's the fourth (4th) day of spring semester classes! Why so early? It needs to coincide with employers' recruiting schedules. An early fair means more opportunities for Binghamton students!

The CDC strongly encourages students to prepare early so they can really WOW employers during the event:

9. Income Tax Issues

Income Tax time is coming soon. Today ISSS-BU News answers some important tax questions for you.

Q. I’ve recently received a form W-8 BEN from my bank. What should I do with this form?

A. For those students who receive a form W-8 BEN from their bank, it is usually because you have opened up an interest-bearing account. It is important that you complete the form and return it to your bank to certify your foreign status. For complete information on how to fill out form W-8 BEN, go to the following web link: http://www2.binghamton.edu/isss/taxes/formw8.html

Q. I am a full-time student at Binghamton, but I also receive a GA, TA or RA stipend. Is the stipend considered to be wages?

A. Yes, GA, TA, and RA stipends are all considered WAGES. Adjunct stipends are also wages. In general, if you receive payment for performing a service, that is considered to be wages and is taxed as income. Students with GA, TA or RA stipends are considered to be part-time employees.

The State or Research Foundation payroll offices will issue form W-2 (Wage and Tax Statement) in late January for wages you earned in calendar year 2012. The information on the W-2 will need to be included on your income tax return.

Q. During the 2012 calendar year, I worked at locations other than Binghamton University (for example, employment at a previous U.S. college or university, or authorized off campus employment). Should I be receiving a Wage and Tax Statement (form W-2) from that employer?

A. Yes! Each employer for whom you worked in 2012 is required to issue you a wage and tax statement prior to the end of January. However, students often change their addresses, so your former employer may not have your current address. Now is the time to contact your previous work places and inform them of your current address so that the W-2 form can be sent to you in a timely manner. Remember, by law, all employers MUST report your earnings to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service. So, failure to receive a form W-2 from an employer does not eliminate the requirement that you report all taxable income earned from that employer.

Q. If I receive an email message from the US Department of the Treasury or the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) asking me for personal information, is it legitimate?

A. The IRS NEVER sends an email about any tax related issue to a taxpayer. There are A LOT of phishing schemes out there that look very legitimate, including one that “comes” from the IRS. The IRS will ALWAYS send a letter to the address on the last tax return or tax form filed so if you receive an email “from” the IRS, it is a fake - do not click on any links and never provide any personal or banking information.

Q. Is there anyone who can assist me with completing my U.S. Tax Forms?

A. The ISSS provides free income tax compliance software, known as Glacier Tax Prep to all international students, international faculty and scholars, and international alumni who are eligible to be considered as non-residents for tax purposes (see the next paragraph for information on what qualifies someone to be a non-resident. Glacier Tax Prepprovides an easy to use web interface for entering information regarding your income tax liability, and then enters the information onto the required forms so that you can print them. Glacier Tax Prepis password-protected so that only you have access to the information. Do not attempt to complete your income tax forms using the e-filing options recommended by the Internal Revenue Service. It is not possible to e-file tax returns if you are a non-resident for tax purposes. Information about how to access and use Glacier Tax Prep will be announced in January.

International students in F or J status for 5 years or less (since 2008 or later) and their dependents, file tax forms as non-residents. Research scholars or faculty in J-1 status for 2 years or less (since 2011 or later) also file as non-residents.

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Last Updated: 12/10/12