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NRA Withholding

Withholding On Payments of U.S. Source Income to Foreign Persons IRC 1441 to 1443 (Form 1042)

Generally, a foreign person is subject to U.S. tax on its U.S. source income. Most types of U.S. source income received by a foreign person are subject to U.S. tax of 30%. A reduced rate, including exemption, may apply if an Internal Revenue Code Section provides for a lower rate, or there is a tax treaty between the foreign person's country of residence and the United States. The tax is generally withheld (NRA withholding) from the payment made to the foreign person. The term NRA withholding is used in this area descriptively to refer to withholding required under sections 1441, 1442, and 1443 of the Internal Revenue Code. Generally, NRA withholding describes the withholding regime that requires 30% withholding on a payment of U.S. source income and the filing of Form 1042 and related Form 1042-S. Payments to all foreign persons, including nonresident alien individuals, foreign entities and governments, may be subject to NRA withholding

In referring to NRA withholding in this area, it does not include withholding done under section 1445 of the Internal Revenue Code (on dispositions of U.S. Real Property Interest) or under section 1446 of the Internal Revenue Code (Partnership Withholding on Effectively Connected Income).

Forms To Be Used

There are four forms in the W-8 series. The form to use depends on the type of certification being made. As used in this discussion of NRA withholding, the term "Form W-8" refers to the appropriate document. Refer to Documentation for more information.

  • Form W-8BEN (PDF) Certificate of Foreign Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding.
  • Form W-8ECI (PDF)Certificate of Foreign Person's Claim for Exemption From Withholding on Income Effectively Connected With the Conduct of a Trade or Business in the United States.
  • Form W-8EXP (PDF) Certificate of Foreign Government or Other Foreign Organization for United States Tax Withholding.
  • Form W-8IMY (PDF) Certificate of Foreign Intermediary, Foreign Flow-Through Entity, or Certain U.S. Branches for United States Tax Withholding

References/Related Topics

Note: This page contains one or more references to the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), Treasury Regulations, court cases, or other official tax guidance. References to these legal authorities are included for the convenience of those who would like to read the technical reference material. To access the applicable IRC sections, Treasury Regulations, or other official tax guidance, visit the Tax Code, Regulations, and Official Guidance page. To access any Tax Court case opinions issued after September 24, 1995, visit the Opinions Search page of the United States Tax Court.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 16-Jan-2014