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Stipend Information

Participants will receive a stipend as support for their living and other expenses during this educational experience. Stipend rates are determined by CDC officials, and are based on the participant’s educational level. Stipends for faculty participants will be based upon their regular university salary.

Pay Schedule

Stipends for most ORISE participants are paid monthly and will be received on the final business day of the month. 

Direct Deposit

ORISE strongly encourages participants to sign up for Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT), i.e., direct deposit, for stipend payments. To sign up, please download and complete the EFT Application form. EFT requires the participant to have a U.S. bank account; we cannot transfer funds to foreign institutions.

Health Insurance Deduction

Participants who enroll in the ORAU/ORISE health insurance plan can expect to have the monthly premium deducted from their stipend payment each month, which pays for health insurance for the following month (e.g., the premium for January coverage will be deducted in December). Participants who begin their appointment between the 1st and 15th of a month can expect to have two insurance premiums deducted from their first stipend payment (one to cover the current month and one to cover the following month).

Other Sources of Income

Because the educational benefits of the appointment are the primary focus of the program, the Participant may not provide services for compensation to a third party that conflict with the appointment. Awards, prizes, scholarships, Veterans Administration benefits, and other payments may be accepted by the participant provided they do not represent dual payment for the same activity.

Taxability of Stipends

Federal Income Tax

All stipend payments paid by Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) directly to the participant are considered taxable by the U.S. federal government and should be reported annually.

Additional Information for Foreign Nationals: Some foreign nationals will have payments reported to the IRS and/or taxes withheld by ORAU based upon their residency and the tax treaty status with their country. Foreign nationals will receive notification of their tax status after beginning their appointment and upon any change/ incident that may affect their status. Foreign nationals for whom ORAU reports payments to the IRS will receive notification of the amount of these payments on Form 1042-S before March 15 following the relevant tax year.

Because participants are not employees, stipend payments are not considered wages and should not be reported as such. Stipend payments are payments made to you in order to help defray living expenses while you are engaged in a research participation program at the CDC. For IRS purposes, these payments are considered non-qualified scholarships and fellowships (not tuition and fees).  For instructions on how to report this amount on your federal tax return, refer to IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education, which you can download from www.irs.gov/formspubs or request at 1-800-829-3676.

Except for some foreign nationals, participants will have no Federal tax withheld by ORAU from their stipend payments. Participants who have no tax withheld by ORAU from their payments should consider filing Form 1040-ES on a quarterly basis and paying estimated Federal income taxes; this action will help you avoid being out of compliance with Federal regulations about the timeliness of tax payments.

Participants who have no tax withheld from their stipend payment can expect to receive an annual Statement of Payments letter from ORAU. Designed to help with your tax preparation, this statement will be sent to you by February and will include the total amount of payments made to you by ORAU during the previous calendar year.

Other Taxes

Because stipend payments are awards (not wages), ORAU does not withhold Social Security or Medicare taxes for any participant. Participants are not self-employed, and therefore do not pay self-employment taxes. ORAU also does not withhold state income tax for any participant.

For more information on state tax liabilities and how to file federal tax forms, please contact a licensed tax professional in your jurisdiction. We recommend that you provide your tax preparer with a copy of your most recent Terms of Appointment.

ORAU’s Responsibility to Withhold Federal Taxes and Report to the IRS
For U.S. Citizens and Non-Citizens Participating in its Fellowship, Scholarship and Internship Programs

Citizenship Qualifying Condition Withholds for Federal Income Tax Reports to the IRS
U.S. Citizen

 

No No
Lawful Permanent Resident (Green Card Holder)

 

No No
Foreign national who is considered a resident for tax purposes* Tax treaty between the U.S. and country of tax residency No Yes (on form 1042-S)
Foreign national who is considered a resident for tax purposes* No tax treaty between the U.S. and country of tax residency No No
Foreign national who is not considered a resident for tax purposes** Tax treaty between the U.S. and country of tax residency No Yes (on form 1042-S)
Foreign national who is not considered a resident for tax purposes** No tax treaty between the U.S. and country of tax residency Yes Yes (on form 1042-S)

* A foreign national who meets the Substantial Presence Test and is, therefore, considered a resident of the U.S. for tax purposes

** A foreign national who does not meet the Substantial Presence Test and is, therefore, NOT considered a resident of the U.S. for tax purposes.