W-8 Forms

(Foreign Alien or Entity)

Form W-8 is required for any payment to a non-U.S. individual or entity.

There are five types of Form W-8. It is the responsibility of the foreign individual or entity to determine the type of form that applies to them.

A brief description of each form is listed below.  Please refer to the individual instruction forms for specific details about each W-8 form.


A W-8BEN is used primarily by individuals to claim foreign status.  

A US tax identification number (TIN or EIN) is required for exemption from tax withholding.

Individuals not eligible for the other W8 forms should use the W-8BEN form.


A W-8BEN-E is used primarily by entities to claim foreign status. 

      A US tax identification number (EIN) is required for exemption from tax withholding.

      Used to claim treaty benefits for entities and royalty/passive income.


A W-8ECI is used primarily by the payee or beneficial owner indicating that all of the income listed on the form is effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States.

The type of income must be identified on Line 9 of the form to qualify for exemption.  If it is not listed, the IRS is required to obtain from the entity a different type of W-8 form.

A US tax identifcation number is required for exemption from tax withholding.


A W-8EXP is used by the following entitites to claim exemption from tax withholding: Foreign governments, Foreign tax exempt organizations, Foreign private foundations, Governments of a US possession, and Foreign central banks of issue

The entity must be claiming exemption under IRS code 115(2), 501(c), 892, 895, 94 1443(b). Otherwise a W-8BEN or W-8ECI must be filed.


A W-8IMY is used by an intermediary, a withholding foreign partnership, withholding foreign trust, or a flow through entity.

Copies of appropriate withholding certificates, documentary evidence, and withholding statements must be attached to the W-8IMY.


An 8233 is used by individuals to claim treaty benefits.  This form must be completed with Wesleyan's Foreign Tax Compliance Coordinator.