University Payroll Taxes

Note: The UHR Payroll Department cannot give tax advice to any employees. If employees need tax assistance, they should contact the IRS or seek their own tax or legal counsel.

Employees may obtain tax forms from their departmental payroll contact or can download them here:
W-4 Form
VA-4 Form

It is strongly recommended that employees submit the W-4 Form using Employee Self-Service. The VA-4 Form must still be completed on paper.

Employees can use the IRS Withholding Calculator to help determine the correct payroll tax withholding exemptions:

New Hires New employees must complete and return a W-4 and a VA-4 Form to their department or to UHR Payroll. The department must forward the tax forms to UHR Payroll. If no form is received, Payroll, following IRS guidelines, must withhold taxes at the default rate of single with zero exemptions.

New Staff and Faculty salaried employees will be given these forms for completion during their Benefits Orientation Meeting.

Changing Tax Information If an employee wants to change the current tax withholding rate, a new W-4 and/or a VA-4 Form must be completed and returned to the UHR Payroll Department. Changes may be made at any time of year. Employee Self-Service should be used for W-4 changes, however VA-4 changes must be submitted on paper.

A W-4 or VA-4 form remains in effect until the employee submits a new form. When an employee submits a W-4 or VA-4 form that replaces an existing form, the Payroll Department must implement the withholding change no later than 30 days from the date the form is received. The withholding change can not be implemented for a payroll period that ends prior to the effective date on the new form.

Exemption from Withholding Employees can claim exempt from income tax withholding, if they meet IRS guidelines, or the State of Virginia guidelines. Information on claiming exemption from withholding can be found on the requisite tax forms. By claiming this exempt status, no federal and/or state taxes will be withheld.

Nonresident Employees Virginia law imposes individual income tax filing requirements on all non-residents (persons who are not Virginia residents or part-year residents but who receive taxable income from Virginia sources). The University does not withhold and report taxes from other states on the wages of its employees regardless of the employee’s residency. However, employees that reside in a state other than Virginia, and who pay state income taxes in such a state, may claim exemption from Virginia state tax withholding. In order to claim exempt from Virginia tax withholding, a VA-4 form would need to be completed by marking the appropriate section on the form. Employees claiming exemption from Virginia withholding should complete a Form VA-4 each year by February 15th to retain the exempt status. Please note that Virginia law requires non-residents to file a Virginia Form 763 (For more information regarding Form 763, please see

Mandatory Renewal of Exemption from Withholding The exempt status expires at the end of the every calendar year. Each calendar year, employees must file new tax forms to claim the exempt status. A new VA-4 must be filed by December 31 and a new W-4 must be filed by February 15 in order to maintain an exempt status for the upcoming calendar year.

If an employee’s exempt status is not renewed by February 15, the University must begin withholding income taxes during the next pay period at the default maximum withholding amount, single with zero exemptions. No refunds will be given by the UHR Payroll Department.

Overwithheld Income Taxes As an employer, the University is required to withhold income taxes from an employee’s paycheck according to the employee’s W-4 and VA-4 forms. It is the employee’s responsibility to complete these tax forms and to do so correctly. If an employee fails to complete the forms, and if income taxes are overwithheld as a result, the UHR Payroll Department will not refund any of the taxes withheld. If eligible, the employee can obtain a refund of any overwithheld income taxes when filing a personal income tax return for that year.

Exempt Status of Full-Time Students Information regarding the exemption from Social Security and Medicare (FICA) taxes for students can be found in the policy on Student FICA exemption.

*_Any student worker that has an active Faculty or Staff assignment is not eligible for the FICA exemption on any assignment, no exceptions._