PAYROLL DEPARTMENT FAQs
Listed below are a few of the Frequently Asked Questions.
- General Information
- Direct Deposit
- Electronic Notification of Earnings
- International Employee/Student
- Tax Related
How do I get copies of my pay stubs?
Employees can now access and print pay stubs through HRConnect, which is now accessed thru Single Sign On (SSO).
- Log-in with your UIN and Password.
- Choose "HRCONNECT" from the SSO Menu.
- Select the "Payroll Data" on the HRConnect screen.
- Scroll to the bottom half of the page and choose "Show Pay Stub"--click the drop-down menu to locate by pay date.
If you experience difficulty logging into SSO, follow the on-screen help or contact your Departmental Administrator 361-593-3706 to have your password reset.
Do I have to re-enroll each year to participate in the Extended Pay Plan?
No. Employees enrolled in EPP will receive a letter each August stating that they will remain enrolled and must sign and return the letter only if they wish to STOP participation.
NEW EMPLOYEE INFO:
I'm a new employee, when and where do I get my payroll check?
Regular staff and faculty employees are paid monthly on the first work day of the month. If you have set up direct deposit in a timely manner, your check will be posted to your bank account on the pay date. If you do not have direct deposit, you may pick up your check in the Payroll Office, room 210, College Hall on pay day. After this day you can pick up your check at the cashier downstairs in the Business Office during normal working hours.
Students & temporary employees are paid bi-weekly. If you have set up direct deposit in a timely manner, your check will be posted to your bank account on the pay date. If you do not have direct deposit, you may pick up your check on pay day or later, in the Business Office during normal working hours.
What can I do to get more employees in our department to sign up for direct deposit?
All employees should be informed that direct deposit is a cost-free employee benefit which is highly encouraged by the Division of Fiscal & Student Affairs and Payroll Services. Direct Deposit eliminates a trip to the Business Office and waiting in line every pay date to pick up a check
What is Direct Deposit?
Direct deposit is the electronic transfer of payment to an individual’s checking or savings account. It is a proven, safe and confidential way to receive your payment.
How do I begin using Direct Deposit?
1. Sign up on-line at the Single Sign On website, or complete a direct deposit authorization form. Forms can be found on the Payroll website, or obtain from the Payroll Office
Can I continue to use my hometown bank?
Yes. Direct Deposit can be made through any bank or financial institution that is a member of Automated Clearing House (ACH). A foreign bank must have a correspondent bank in the U.S.
How can I be sure my deposit was made?
Employees who have chosen to receive an "electronic notification of earnings" will access their pay information through HRConnect instead of receiving a paper stub. Employees who have not made this election will receive a pay stub from the Payroll Office. Paper pay stubs are made available on payday.
I am interested in direct deposit but I don't have an account. Can I have my payroll deposited into someone else's account?
Although Texas A&M University has no policy against this, some financial institutions do not allow deposits to be made if the depositor's name is not on the account. Employees should verify the policies of their specific financial institution regarding this type of deposit before making this election.
Can I stop using direct deposit if I change my mind, or change banks while I am on direct deposit?
Yes. Indicate the change you would like to make on the direct deposit authorization form. Notify Payroll Services before you close an account.
When do I have access to the money?
Your payment is available to you at the opening of business on payday. Your financial institution can tell you exactly when your money will be available.
* Why is Direct Deposit good for consumers?
Direct Deposit is secure, convenient and fast. With Direct Deposit there are no lost checks, it saves consumers from waiting in lines at the bank, and gives many people access to their money earlier than a traditional check.
* Are checks safe?
According to a study by Tinucci & Associates for NACHA, "While the banking system itself is secure, the sheer number of times a check must be passed from hand to hand while it is being processed means there is less security available."
In short, checks are usually safe, but Direct Deposit is safer. For Banks, check fraud is a $4.3 billion annual problem. Direct Deposit can eliminate these problems. It is the most private, safe, proven way to transfer money.
* Why should I help save my employer money?
Direct Deposit saves money for employees, companies, the government and society. Most employees are aware that a stable and healthy company provides a reasonable measure of job security, as well as benefits community and country.
* Source: Direct Deposit and Direct Payment, www.electronicpayments.org
Will student workers and wage employees who are on direct deposit be able to access their pay information through HRConnect?
Yes. Students can now view their pay information on HRConnect. They can also view and print their W-2 for previous years on HRConnect.
I understand that the confirmation from HRConnect is received via e-mail after an employee selects the option for electronic notification. How is the message sent if a student worker does not have an e-mail address in the payroll system or HRConnect?
The employee needs to go to Single Sign On/HRConnect and set up or change their email address listed on the Personal Tab.
Does the automatic e-mail that is received by the employee after payroll has been processed contain the earnings data?
No. Because e-mail is not necessarily a secure application, no confidential information is included in the message. The automated message simply tells the employee that the earnings information is available on HRConnect.
Why Am I Required to Provide Information in GLACIER?
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the U.S. government tax authority, has issued strict regulations regarding the taxation and reporting of payments made to individuals who are not citizens or U.S. permanent residents. Because US tax regulations governing such individuals are different from those governing U.S. citizens or permanent residents, it is important to be sure payments made to you are appropriately taxed and that benefits such as tax treaties are correctly applied if you are eligible for them. The GLACIER Online Tax Compliance System is an efficient and effective way to manage tax liability and is much easier for you to use than the previously used paper forms.
Why Is My Tax Status Important?
In order to comply with U.S. tax laws, your U.S. Tax Residency Status must be determined. The Substantial Presence Test is used to determine whether an individual is a Nonresident Alien or Resident Alien for purposes of U.S. tax withholding. GLACIER Online Tax Compliance System will calculate your U.S. Residency Status for Tax Purposes based on the information provided by you. For many people, the test is simple, but for others it can become complex. Because of the complexity of the many exceptions to the rules for this test, it is much easier for the software program to help determine your tax residency than for you to try to do this by reading the tax regulations. However, if you want to read the regulations yourself, you may do so in IRS Publication 519, the U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens.
What is the Difference between a Nonresident and a Resident for Tax Purposes?
U.S. federal regulations use the term "alien" to refer to someone who is not a U.S. citizen or a U.S. permanent resident. If you are a Nonresident Alien for Tax Purposes, you are subject to different tax withholding and reporting regulations than a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident; if you are a Resident Alien for Tax Purposes, you are taxed in the same manner as a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident. There are benefits and disadvantages to both situations. For additional details, you should refer to the U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens. (Remember, many uses of the terms "resident" and "non-resident" exist. For instance, use of these terms occur when determining your immigration status in the U.S. and also in relation to a student's residency status in Texas when paying in state or out of state tuition. Neither of these definitions of "resident" or "non-resident" have anything to do with your tax residency status. For example, it is possible to be a "non-resident" for tax purposes but a "resident" for tuition purposes.)
How Long Will I Be a Nonresident Alien?
Your Residency Status Change Date is the day on which your U.S. Residency Status for Tax Purposes will change, generally from Nonresident Alien for Tax Purposes to Resident Alien for Tax Purposes. The U.S. tax system is based on a calendar year period (January 1 - December 31). In most cases, when your U.S. Residency Status for Tax Purposes changes, you will become a Resident Alien for Tax Purposes retroactive to the first day of the calendar year during which your status changed; this day is called the Residency Status Start Date. Most students on F or J visas will be a nonresident for tax purposes for the first five years in the U.S. as an F or J student.
How Will I Be Taxed on Payments From U.S. Sources?
- If you receive Dependent Compensation (salary or wages), you are generally required to complete Form W-4 as "Single" (regardless of your actual marital status), "One" Personal Withholding Allowance (regardless of your actual number of dependents), and an Additional Amount of Tax to offset potential under withholding of tax.
- If you receive a Scholarship or Fellowship (for which NO services are required), your scholarship or fellowship may consist of Nontaxable items (Tuition, Book Allowance, Required Registration Fees, and Mandatory Health Insurance), Taxable items (including, but are not limited to, Room and Board, Stipend, Living Allowance, Travel Payment/Reimbursement), or a combination of both nontaxable and taxable items. If you are present in the U.S. under an F, J, M, or Q immigration status, the applicable rate of tax withholding is 14 percent; if you are present in the U.S. under any other immigration status, the applicable rate of tax withholding is 30 percent.
- If you receive an Honorarium, Guest Speaker Fee, Consultant Fees, Royalty, or any other type of income, the applicable rate of tax withholding is 30 percent.
Can I Be Exempt From Tax Withholding?
The U.S. maintains income tax treaties with approximately 63 countries. Certain taxable payments made to you (or portions of those payments), may be exempt from U.S. tax based on an income tax treaty entered into between the U.S. and your country of tax residence. The existence of a tax treaty does not automatically ensure an exemption from tax withholding; rather, you must satisfy the requirements for the exemption set forth in the tax treaty and provide all applicable forms and documents to the Institution Administrator as identified in GLACIER. If you qualify for a tax treaty exemption, you must complete and submit Form W-8BEN (for all scholarship, fellowship, or royalty payments) or Form 8233 (for all compensation payments).
What If I Do Not Submit My Forms and Documents?
If you do not complete the information in GLACIER and/or submit the required forms and documents in a timely fashion, the maximum amount of tax will be withheld from all payments made to you.
How should the W-4 form be completed for an international student or teacher/researcher?
A nonresident alien employee who is paid monthly shall complete the W-4 form as "single", one allowance and an additional withholding amount of $33.10. A nonresident alien employee, who is paid biweekly, must complete the form as "single", one allowance and an additional withholding amount of $15.30.
Nonresident alien students from India are not subject to the additional withholding amount
Click here for specific instructions on completing the W-4 Form as a Non-Resident Alien Employee.
Are International students and teachers/researchers exempt from paying federal income tax withholding?
An international employee is exempt from paying federal income tax withholding only if there is a tax treaty between the U.S. and the country the employee is trying to claim a treaty benefit for. The employee must meet the conditions as set forth in the treaty.
In order to claim a treaty benefit, the employee must complete Form 8233 and Attachment to Form 8233. These documents are submitted to Payroll services for review. If approved, these documents are faxed to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS has ten days to accept or reject the application.Form 8233 and the Attachment expires December 31st of each year. A new form and attachment must be submitted between November 1st and December 10th of each year to continue uninterrupted exemptions in the next year.
IRS Publication 901 contains a list of the countries the U.S. has tax treaties with and a brief summary description of the different treaty parts.
What is a History of Presence form?
This is an internal document used by Payroll Services to determine if an international student, professor or research scholar is eligible for exemption from certain types of taxes. Without this form on file, Payroll Services will not allow tax exemption benefits.
Please note that Payroll Services is now replacing the History of Presence Form with the Tax Summary Report generated by GLACIER. For more information on GLACIER please see Glacier FAQ's
When must an I-9 be completed?
Every time you hire any person to perform labor for services in return for wages or remuneration an I-9 must be completed.
When does the employee complete Section 1?
Section 1 must be completed, signed and dated by the employee on or before the day the individual begins work. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) defines this date as the actual commencement of employment of an employee for wages or other compensation.
If someone accepts a job with a TAMU department but will not start work immediately, can the I-9 be completed when the employee accepts the job?
Yes. The law requires that the Form I-9 be completed when the person begins working. However, the form may be completed earlier, as long as it is completed at the same point in the employment process for all employees.
Can someone other than the employee complete Section 1 of the I-9 for an employee?
Yes. A third party may help an employee who needs assistance in completing Section 1 of the I-9. However, the "Preparer/Translator Certification" block must be completed and signed by the person who assists. The employee must still sign and date the certification block in Section 1 on or before the first day of work.
When does the employer representative complete Section 2?
Section 2 must be completed, signed and dated no later than three business days after the first day of employment, which is the first day on the job.
I noticed on the Form I-9 that under list A there are 2 spaces for document numbers and expiration dates. Does this mean I have to see 2 list A documents?
No. One of the documents found in List A is an unexpired foreign passport with an attached INS Form I-94. The Form I-9 provides space for you to record the document number and expiration date for both the passport and the INS Form I-94.
Should the employer view and record documents for Section 2 in all three documents, Lists A, B, and C?
No. Never fill out all three columns. The employer should view and record in Section 2 either one document from List A OR one document from List B and one document from List C.
Can the employer tell the employee which documents to present or which documents the employer prefers to see?
Why is a driver's license from Canada acceptable as a List B document and not a driver's license from Mexico?
The United States-Canada Free-Trade Agreement and other reciprocal agreements between these two countries form the basis for accepting a driver's license from Canada as a List B identity document. No such reciprocal agreements currently exist between the United States and Mexico that would allow or permit the use of a driver's license from Mexico as a List B identity document.
May I accept an expired document?
You may accept an expired United States Passport. You may also accept an expired document from List B to establish identity. However, the document must reasonably appear on its face to be genuine and to relate to the person presenting it. You cannot accept any other expired documents.
How can I tell if a USCIS-issued document has expired?
Some USCIS-issued documents, such as previous versions of the Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-151 and I-551), do not have expiration dates and are valid indefinitely. However, the 1989 revised version of the Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-551), which is rose-colored with computer readable data on the back, features a 2-year or 10-year expiration date. Other USCIS-issued documents such as the Temporary Resident Card (I-688) and the Employment Authorization Card (I-688A or I-688B) also have expiration dates. These dates can be found either on the face of the document or on a sticker attached to the back of the document.
Is a new I-9 required if an employee changes their name?
Yes, a new I-9 must be submitted upon completion of Sections 1 & 3. Note in the upper right hand corner "Update Due to Name Change".
What do I do if the employee has applied for but has not received the SSN card and has been issued a temporary ID by Payroll Services?
The I-9 should be completed using the temporary ID number. The temporary ID should NOT be written in the SSN field in Section I of the I-9, it should be written in the upper right corner of the I-9. The department representative should note under the temporary ID number that the employee has applied for a SSN.
Some people are presenting me with printouts from the Social Security Administration with their name, Social Security Number, date of birth, and their parents' names. May I accept such printouts in place of a Social Security Card as evidence of employment eligibility?
No. Only a person's official Social Security Card is acceptable.
What should I do if persons present Social Security Cards marked "NOT VALID FOR EMPLOYMENT," but state they are now authorized to work?
You should ask them to provide another document to establish their employment eligibility. (Since such Social Security Cards do not establish this.)
Some people are presenting me with Social Security Cards that have been laminated. May I accept such cards as evidence of employment eligibility?
You may not accept a laminated Social Security Card as evidence of employment eligibility if the card states on the back "not valid if laminated." Lamination of such cards renders them invalid. Metal or plastic reproductions of Social Security Cards are not acceptable.
May I accept a photocopy of a document presented by an employee?
No. Employees must present original documents. The only exception is that an employee may present a certified copy of a birth certificate.
Who is responsible for monitoring the employment eligibility based on the "authorization to work until" field in Section 1 of the I-9?
The Hiring Department is responsible for monitoring employment eligibility. Departments should maintain a tickler system to ensure that the reverification is completed in compliance with USCIS regulations. See section 3 of the "Guidelines For Completing the I-9 Form" flowchart for specific reverification/updating instructions.
When is I-9 Updating and Re-verification required and what steps are necessary?
When an employee's work authorization expires you must re-verify his or her employment eligibility. A new I-9 must be completed (Sections 1 and 3). The employee must present a document that shows either an extension of the employee's initial employment authorization or a new work authorization.
If the employee cannot provide you with proof of current work authorization, the department cannot continue to employ that person. The Department must process a EPA immediately removing the employee from payroll.
What must a department do once the Employee has presented new documentation that extends/updates their "work until" authorization date?
The Employee and Department must complete and submit a new I-9 to the International Faculty and Scholars Services Office (IFSS). Only Sections 1 and 3 are to be completed. In addition, the Department should process a EPA placing the employee back on payroll.
Is it necessary to update or re-verify an I-9 based on the following documents?
- Expired U.S. Passport
- Expired green card (I-551)
- Expired List B document
No. An expired U.S. Passport, expired green card (I-551), or expired List B document does not constitute the need to update/reverify the I-9.
Do I need to complete a new I-9 when one of my employees is promoted within Texas A&M University (M Pin) or transfers to another department with Texas A&M University still in an M PIN?
No. You do not need to complete a new I-9 for promoted or transferred employees as long as the employee retains an M Pin number.
Do I need to complete a new I-9 when an employee transfers or has been employed by another Texas A&M University System part/member?
Yes, a new I-9 must be completed. For example, if the department hires an employee that is or has been employed by the College of Engineering (E Pin) and is hired by TAMU (M Pin), the department must complete a new I-9.
If an employee has been terminated and is later rehired, does a new I-9 need to be completed?
Yes. Any employee who has been terminated and removed from payroll needs to complete a new I-9 when rehired.
In the event of a United States Citizenship and Immigration Services or Department of Labor audit, is the University subject to any penalties for failing to comply with Form I-9 requirements?
Employers/Departments who fail to properly complete, retain, and/or make available for inspection Forms I-9 as required by law may face civil money penalties of not less than $100 and not more than $1,000 for each employee for whom the Form I-9 was not properly completed, retained, and/or made available.
What are the requirements for copying and retaining the I-9?
Documentation provided by a new employee in support of the I-9 should not be photocopied by the employing department. It should only be used in the review process to validate the I-9 but should not be copied nor retained by the department.
A photocopy of the validated I-9 should be retained in the employing department ONLY until the department is confident that the original I-9 has been received in Payroll Services AND the employee has received his/her first payroll check. Departments should then destroy the copy.
If I receive a notice from Payroll Services requesting an Exception Letter, either because dates or signatures on an I-9 do not comply with USCIS regulations, does the Exception Letter bring the I-9 into compliance?
No. The Exception Letter only explains the reason for non-compliance. The department and TAMU could still be subject to fines and penalties.
Do I need to file a new W-4 form each year?
You are not required to submit a new W-4 form each year unless you have claimed "Exempt". If you claim "Exempt" on your W-4, please be aware it will expire on December 31st of each year. If a new W-4 form is not submitted, your tax withholding will automatically default to a single filing status with zero allowances.
How can I determine what my tax will be if I change my W-4?
There are two resources available to help you make that determination. The first and very good resource is HRConnect . There is a feature called "calculators" that contains a net pay estimator program. In this program, you can make changes in your salary information, W-4, payroll deductions, etc and it will calculate what your taxes and net pay will be.
Are students exempt from paying Social Security (OASI) and Medicare (OAHI) taxes?
Under IRS Section 3121(b)(10) of the Internal Revenue Code, students performing services as an employee of a college or University could be exempt if certain conditions are met.
Click here to check your status.
What is Advance Earned Income Credit?
The Advance Earned Income Credit allows and employee who is eligible for the Earned Income Credit (EIC) and has a qualifying child to receive EIC payments during the year with his or her payroll check.
In order to receive these payments, an employee must complete Form W-5 found on either the Payroll Services website under Tax Forms or the IRS website at http://www.irs.gov. A qualifying employee must file a new Form W-5 each year to continue receiving the Advance Earned Income Credit payment.
- If you received wages/compensation from TAMUK and all or part of these wages were exempt from Federal Income Tax because of a tax treaty you should receive a 1042-S Form.
- If you are a Nonresident for tax purposes and were billed International Withholding Tax on your student fee account, you should receive a 1042-S Form.
- If you are a Nonresident for tax purposes and received a taxable non-service Scholarship/Fellowship/ Stipend payment(s) that was exempt from International Withholding tax because of a tax treaty, you should receive a 1042-S Form.
- If you are a Nonresident for tax purposes and received a student travel reimbursement that was considered a non-service scholarship/fellowship and/or a Prize or Award payment that was subject to tax withholding you should receive a 1042-S Form from TAMUK.
Note: It is possible to receive more than one 1042-S Form from TAMUK. For example, if you received wages/compensation type payments and non-service scholarship/fellowship type payments you will receive a 1042-S for each type of income. Or if you worked for different departments whose payroll is processed by different workstations you could receive a 1042-S from each workstation.
When and where will I be able to get my 1042-S Form?
Payroll Services reports all 1042-S Forms through the GLACIER online tax system and the forms should be ready for distribution by the first week of February.
Individuals who had completed a GLACIER tax record during the previous calendar year and selected to receive their 1042-S form electronically will be able to access their GLACIER record and print their 1042-S form(s) for Wage/Compensation payments, Non-service Scholarship/Fellowship type payments, and Prize or Award payments. To determine whether you selected to receive the 1042-S form electronically, log onto your GLACIER tax record and view your selection on the first screen under "User Agreement."
Individuals who selected to receive their 1042-S Form(s) electronically through GLACIER will receive a notice no later than February 1 via email letting them know that their 1042-S Form(s) are ready. This email will contain specific instructions on how to access GLACIER and print your 1042-S Form(s).
When will I be able to get my W-2 form?
If you signed up to receive your W-2 form electronically, you will receive an email no later than January 31, 2006 that it is available in HRConnect.
If you did not sign up to receive your W-2 electronically, the paper form will be mailed by January 31 and available in HRConnect by February 10.
How do I get a copy of my W-2?
Upon availability, TAMUK employees will be able to access and print W-2 forms through HRConnect, which can be accessed thru Single Sign On (SSO).
- Log-in with your UIN and Password.
- Choose "HRCONNECT" from the SSO Menu.
- Select the "Payroll Data" on the HRConnect screen.
- Scroll to the bottom half of the page and choose "Show W2 Form"--click the drop-down menu to check for multiple W2s.
If you experience difficulty logging into SSO, follow the on-screen help or contact your Central Administrator (361-593-3706) to have your password reset.
Why does my last pay stub of the calendar year not match the wages information on my W2?
The information on the last pay stub of the year may not match the wages reported on your W2 because Box 1 reflects income less pretax items such as TRS, ORP, TDA, medical, dental, health care spending account, etc.
Why is my W-2 form wages less than my actual wage?
Box 1 - Taxable wages = Gross pay + Longevity + Emoluments - Pretax deferred compensation (TRS/ORP/TDA/DCP) - Pretax health related deductions (medical, dental, vision, ADD and health spending accounts)
Box 3 - Social Security wages = Gross pay + Longevity + Emoluments - Pretax health related deductions (medical, dental, vision, ADD and health spending accounts)
Why does my Box 1 wages different from my Box 3 Social Security wages?
The wages in these boxes are computed differently.
Box 1 - Taxable wages = Gross pay + Longevity + Emoluments - Pretax pension (TRS/ORP/TDA/DCP) - Pretax health related deductions (medical, dental, vision, ADD and health spending accounts)
Box 3 - Social Security wages = Gross pay + Longevity + Emoluments - Pretax health related deductions medical, dental, vision, ADD and health spending accounts)
This page was last updated on: May 01, 2012