Non-Resident Alien Instructions for Completing Form W-4

April 1, 2016

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires non-resident aliens to complete the Form W-4 in the following manner:

Lines 1, 2 and 4:  Complete per Form W-4 Instructions;

Line 3:  Claim “single” status, regardless of actual marital status;

Line 5:  Claim only “one” allowance [Note:  a non-resident alien who is a resident of Canada, Mexico, or South Korea may claim more than one allowance];

Line 6:  Write “Non-resident alien” or “NRA” on the dotted line (at your option, you may request an additional withholding amount); and

Line 7:  Leave blank:  a non-resident alien cannot claim exemption on this form.

The form must be signed and dated.

If you have any questions about your classification as a non-resident alien for tax purposes, please contact the University Tax Department at (203) 432-5530 or email

Download a printable pdf version of these instructions.