Payroll - FAQ's for Tax Information

Questions?

  • Payroll Office
    202-885-3520
    Fax: 202-885-1033
    payroll@american.edu
    New Mexico, Room 350

    9:00am to 5:00pm

Mailing Address

 Tax Form Frequently Asked Questions: 

1. Do I need to fill out new tax forms every year?

No, unless there is a lengthy break in service, you originally filed a form claiming more than 10 exemptions, or if you are claiming "Exempt." Employees who have claimed "Exempt" must complete a new request each year no later than February 15th of the following year. You can verify your current tax information through the Payroll tab of HR/Payroll Connection on the AU portal. Your personal tax inflation will be displayed. Otherwise, these forms will be effective until new ones are filed.


2. Do I still pay D.C. taxes if I commute from another state?

If someone works in D.C., but will not be residing in D.C. for 183 days or more in the tax year (i.e. commute to work from a state other than MD or VA), then he/she may complete a certificate of nonresidency in the District of Columbia. Student employees are not eligible to file a D.C. nonresident form. Employees living in Maryland or Virginia should complete the appropriate state tax forms for withholding.


3. How do I complete Federal and State tax forms? What do these categories mean? Which address should I use?

We are not allowed to provide tax advice, however we can help you decipher what the categories mean. The worksheet at the top of the form is designed as a guideline to help you determine the number of withholdings that are most appropriate. It is not an exact formula however. Please provide your local address and be sure to claim either exempt OR a number of withholdings. Please do not fill both. Additionally, the university provides general tax information on our tax webpages.

4. I am a legal resident of another state. Do I still need to pay taxes in D.C.?

Employee with a permanent residence other then D.C .who resides on campus 183 days or more in the tax year is still obligated to pay local taxes and needs to complete D.C. tax form (include your local address). If you have filled out local tax forms, and paid taxes to the local government, then you (or your parents) would have to file local tax returns by the deadline in the state of temporary residence.


5. I am a new hire sent to HR/Payroll to fill out some "paperwork." What paperwork do I need to complete?

Are you a part-time or full-time employee? You should fill out Federal and State tax forms, I-9 form, Direct Deposit (available also online), etc. If you are full-time you should be given an offer letter that lists your HR orientation date. If not, please contact HR.


6. If I change my address to a new state, do I also need to fill new tax forms?

Yes. If the change of address is within the tri-state area of the District of Columbia, Maryland, or Virginia, you will need to fill out new tax forms for the particular state.


7. I completed an incorrect state tax form. Am I eligible for a payroll refund of taxes? How may I obtain a refund?

If you completed an incorrect state form, you will need to complete the correct state form. The Payroll Office will not be able to refund the money but can transfer the tax withheld to the correct state. If the incorrect tax information is not discovered before a W-2 form is issued then you will need to file for a refund with the state the taxes were withheld in.


8. My parents claim me as a dependent/student. Do I still need to pay taxes? How do I know if I can claim Exempt from taxes?

There is no automatic Exempt status because you are a dependent or a student. If your parents claim you as a dependent, you may want to check with them or their accountant to determine the most appropriate way to complete the tax forms. 


9. When will my tax form changes take effect?

Please refer to the payroll schedule timeline; however, the Payroll Office makes every effort to process as many requests as possible.


10. Where should I find tax forms - VA/MD/DC/FED?

You can click on the desired form in the "Forms" section on the right side of this screen. You can also find these forms in the HR/Payroll Connection on the AU Portal. Go to the Info/Forms tab, then click on Payroll/Taxes.