Tax

The mission of the Tax Department is to proactively research and guide the University in matters of international, federal, state and local tax law. Additionally, the Tax Department creates policies and procedures which ensure legal compliance and protect the tax exempt status of the University. 

We are responsible for: 

  • Researching international, federal, state and local tax issues for the University.
  • Filing the University's federal, state and local tax returns, including the Form 990, Form 990-T, various sales and property tax returns.
  • Reviewing "Independent Contractor Tax Questionnaires" to determine if an individual should be classified as an Independent Contractor or Employee.
  • Setting up Accounts Payable Payees in the University's Workday Supplier database.
  • Setting up Non Resident Aliens (NRA) individuals and entities properly in the Payroll and Accounts Payable systems to allow for treaty benefits, ensure proper withholding and tax reporting.

The Tax Department does NOT provide personal income tax advice to students or employees, nor does it issue Form W-2 Wage and Tax Statement. All Form W-2 questions should be directed to the Payroll Department at  payrollservices@georgetown.edu. All Form 1098-T questions should be directed to the Student Accounts at  studentaccounts@georgetown.edu.

Meet the Tax Department Team

Contact the Tax Department

  • E-mail: taxdepartment@georgetown.edu
  • Fax: 202-687-5758
  • Mail:  Georgetown University Tax Department   37th & O Streets, NW, Box 571173  Washington, DC 20057-1173 
  • Our Office Location: 2121 Wisconsin Avenue, NW, Suite 400 Washington, DC 20007 

Documents

Sales Tax

University Departments should use exemption sales tax exemption certificates whenever possible when purchasing services and tangible property for University purposes. In order for a purchase to be exempt from sales tax, it must be limited to University purposes and the payment must be made by a GU employee with University funds (ProCard, GU Check). Purchases made with a GOCard or other prepaid card do not qualify for exemption from sales tax in the District of Columbia. Please see the Sales Tax Matrix Exemption Matrix to determine they types of tangible property and services the University is exempt from by jurisdiction. Georgetown University currently has sales tax exemptions in 13 jurisdictions:

  1. District of Columbia Indefinite
  2. Florida 10/31/2018
  3. Illinois 06/01/2017
  4. Kentucky Indefinite
  5. Maryland 09/30/2017
  6. Massachusetts 12/20/2018
  7. Missouri Indefinite
  8. New York Indefinite
  9. Ohio Indefinite
  10. Pennsylvania 09/30/2016 (extension till 02/28/17)
  11. Tennessee Indefinite
  12. Texas Indefinite
  13. Virginia 06/27/2017

University Departments are required to collect and remit sales tax on sales or services and tangible property subject to sales tax. Please reference the Collecting Sales Tax section of this website.

Unrelated Business Income Tax (UBIT)

Before entering into revenue generating agreements please review Financial Affairs Policy FA 157.

As a 501(c)(3) organization Georgetown University is generally exempt from income tax.  However, under certain circumstances income it receives may result in income tax.

Generally, if the income received meets all three of the following criteria, it constitutes UBI;

1. It is income from trade or business
2. Such trade or business is regularly carried on by the organization
3. The conduct of such trade or business is not substantially related (other than through the production of funds) to the organization's performance of its exempt functions

However, there are many exceptions and special circumstances that may cause a revenue stream to be deemed UBI or exempted from tax. Please e-mail taxdepartment@georgetown.edu with questions.

Value Added Tax (VAT)

The Value Added Tax (VAT) is a tax charged by most members of the European Economic Community(EEC), and Canada. VAT varies by country and type of expense. VAT variations range from 3% to 25%.The average VAT rate is 15%. Among the goods and services subject to VAT are:

  • Hotels and Meals
  • Car Rentals, Taxis and Transportation
  • Gasoline and Diesel Fuel
  • Business Entertainment
  • Conferences, Seminars and Trade Shows
  • Training and Consulting Fees

Departments may be able to recover portions of their VAT expenses. For more information e-mail the Tax Department.

Worker Classification (Independent Contractor vs. Employee Classification)

If the University classifies an employee as an independent contractor without a reasonable basis for doing so, the University may be held liable for employment taxes for that worker by the Internal Revenue Service.

The IRS uses three characteristics to determine the relationship between businesses and workers:

  1. Behavioral Control covers facts that show whether the business has a right to direct or control how the work is done through instructions, training or other means.
  2. Financial Control covers facts that show whether the business has a right to direct or control the financial and business aspects of the worker's job.
  3. Type of Relationship factor relates to how the workers and the business owner perceive their relationship.

When a GU Department submits a contract through the Purchasing & Contracts group, an "INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR TAX QUESTIONNAIRE" is required to be completed if the contract is with an individual or company with two or less employees. The Tax Department reviews the questionnaire and contract submitted to the Purchasing & Contracts group as part of the review and approval process. You may want to use the this statement of work template. If you have questions about this process, please e-mail taxdepartment@georgetown.edu.

If the Individual is determined to be an employee and the Individual plans to telework from an state that is not approved by the University (see Financial Affairs Policy 177 for "Establishing New Entities and Presence in New Jurisdictions"), the Tax Department will assist the University Department with expediting the "Entities and Presence Policy Form" routing process.