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What is W-8 Form Certificate of Foreign Status used for?
Thread poster: SandraV

SandraV  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:48
Member (2004)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Oct 30, 2004

Hi,

I'm a Mexican translator and I have just been sent an "IRS Form W-8 Certificate of Foreign Status" by a USA agency. They say it is indispensable to fill it out and sign it in order to start working for them. As this is the first time I'm being asked to do so, I am confused and want to know if signing this form would have any negative implications for me or if it is a common procedure, maybe a lot of agencies ask to sign this form, but I need to know what is the use of signing it and if there's someone who has experience with this and can explain it to me.I´ll appreciate your comments.
Thanks
Sandy


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Trudy Peters  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:48
German to English
+ ...
W-8 Oct 30, 2004

If you go to the www.irs.gov site, you will find a better explanation that I could give you.

It basically means that no taxes will be withheld from your pay, because you're not a US-citizen.

Trudy


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 20:48
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...
- Oct 30, 2004

Trudy Peters wrote:
It basically means that no taxes will be withheld from your pay, because you're not a US-citizen.


Exactly so. I have also filled such Form (W-8BEN) for a US based agency (and I did not to fill in my Polish tax number). Take a look at the instructions that come after the Form itself.

[Edited at 2004-10-31 11:13]


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Marcela Robaina Boyd  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 16:48
English to Spanish
+ ...
No need to worry Oct 30, 2004

You can be sure that it IS standard procedure. I would wonder why other agencies haven't sent it, not why this one is sending it out for you to fill.
However, have they sent you form W-8 or W-8BEN or W-8ECI?
Hope this helps to reassure you.
Abrazos,
Marcela


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DGK T-I  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:48
Member (2003)
Georgian to English
+ ...
The instructions for W-8 BEN are at Oct 30, 2004

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/iw8ben.pdf

the point is to make clear is that you are not resident in the US or a US citizen, and that you are exporting your service from another country where the work has been done, and so are not subject to US income tax.
Some companies seem to use it, and some not, and I've heard different views about whether it is necessary in our situation - but companies who use it tend to feel strongly that they need it, and I haven't heard of any harmful consequences to individuals. Practically speaking, I believe you won't need to fill in your (own county) tax number (you may prefer not to do it, as a matter of principle) and won't need to get a US 'TI number'.


[Edited at 2004-10-30 23:52]


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SandraV  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:48
Member (2004)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you!! Nov 4, 2004

Thank you Trudy,Natalie, Marcela and Giuli for your answers. My last question would be which one of the three last options in the form should I check?, where it says "Certification".

Thank you again
Regards,
Sandy


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