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IRS Regulations & Study Payments

The IRS considers payments for participating in research to be taxable income. If you earn $600 or more in payments at Rutgers during any calendar year, and if you have provided your social security number (SSN) or tax identification number (TIN), the Rutgers Tax Office will issue you an IRS 1099-form (or 1042-S form if you are a non-resident alien.) You will be required to report this as income on your taxes.


Reimbursements for travel expenses such as parking, tolls, taxi/rideshare, bus or train (should this be allowed in your study) are not considered taxable income, so long as you provide a receipt for these expenses to the study team.  (Note that receipts are generally NOT required in order to be reimbursed for mileage.)

Rutgers Tax Policy

Rutgers Tax Policy requires that study teams ask study participants to provide their social security numbers (SSN) or tax identification numbers (TIN) for studies where any single payment exceeds $100.00 or if there is a possibility that participants will earn more than $300 on any given study in a calendar year.


Participants may elect to withhold their SSN/TIN, but will be subject to tax withholdings from any taxable payments in excess of $300 per calendar year. See the below section on Backup Withholdings.

Providing your Social Security Number

If you have agreed to provide your SSN or TIN, it will be entered into the ClinCard system, where it will be securely maintained and accessible only to the individuals at Rutgers who have an absolute need to see it. Your tax identifiers are only accessed for purposes of reporting taxable income to the IRS.
Once your SSN/TIN is entered into the system, it is no longer available to any members of the study team.

Backup Withholding

Should you elect to withhold a valid TIN/SSN from the study team, you are still able to be compensated. All dollar amounts after $300 earned in a calendar year will be subject to a 24% withholding. This withholding amount will be submitted to the IRS without any identifiers. You will remain anonymous.


For example, you have earned $250 this calendar year and are being paid $100 at your next visit in the same year. $50 will have no withholding and you will receive the full amount. The other $50 will be withheld at 24%, meaning $12 would be withheld. This would mean your total payment is $50+38, or $88 total.