We want to make you aware of two upcoming deadlines (Sept 11 and Oct 1) for those of you who are using the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) during the fall 2019 semester. As you may recall from an earlier email we sent, Harvard is now withholding tax for graduate-level tuition benefits that meet certain criteria. If you are taking a Harvard class during the fall 2019 semester, please read this entire message as it lists two different ways to for you to avoid owing tax on your TAP benefits this semester.
(1) TAP Form Deadline: Weds, Sept 11, 2019
The Harvard Benefits Office requires all staff who are using the Harvard Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) this semester to fill out a TAP Form. You can find the form on Benefit Strategies’ website here: https://www.benstrat.com/harvard/. If you are taking a Harvard class this semester and have not yet filled out this form, please do so immediately. It is due Wednesday, 9/11/2019. Follow the instructions on the form for submission. Even if you have missed the deadline, you should submit the TAP form anyway. You will not be able to use the Transitional TAP Fund (which reimburses you for any tax you owe this semester and is described under #2 below) unless you submit a TAP form.
As we mentioned our email message from July, in order to ensure compliance with IRS policy, Harvard will begin withholding tax from your paycheck for any graduate-level tuition benefits (TAP/TRP) you receive from Harvard over $5250 per year for non job-related classes. You may be able to avoid owing any tax on your classes, if you use the TAP form to attest that your course is “job-related” and have your supervisor sign that section of the form. Read more about how “job-relatedness” can be applied here. If you feel that your course is not job-related or if you are unable to get your supervisor’s signature, check “no” in the job-relatedness section on the form and skip to the next section of the form. If you check “no”, you will owe the tax on your graduate-level tuition benefits over $5250, however, Harvard is offering 100% reimbursement of that tax for the fall 2019 semester if you apply by October 1 (see details below)
(2) TAX Reimbursement Deadline: Tues, October 4, 2019
If your course is not job-related (or if you are not able to get your supervisor’s signature on your TAP form), you can apply for 100% reimbursement of any tax you owe on Harvard courses for this semester (fall 2019) using the Transitional TAP Fund (TTF). You can find the TTF reimbursement form on Benefit Strategies website: https://www.benstrat.com/harvard/. This form is due 10/4/2019. You can learn more about how the Transitional TAP Fund works on the Q&A sheet created by Harvard. The 100% tax reimbursement is for the fall 2019 semester only.
Please email or call the HUCTW office if you have any questions (firstname.lastname@example.org, 617-661-8289)
However, please note that this is not a HUCTW process; this is a Harvard process. We didn’t design the TAP form or set the deadlines. So, if you would like definitive answers on deadlines, requirements, taxes-owed, etc, you should contact that Harvard Benefits Office (617-496-4001).