Seasonal Workers and J1 Students- How to Comply with Massachusetts Laws

April 15, 2019

With the start of the summer season soon upon us, we wanted to provide some further information on the hiring of seasonal workers and J1 students.

Massachusetts Address:

In order to comply with Massachusetts new hire reporting requirements, we request that you obtain from your new hires a local MA address as well as their home address. Any employee working in Massachusetts should have a residential address within the state.

Tax Exemptions:

J1 students are exempt from paying Social Security and Medicare taxes, therefore employers are also exempt from paying those taxes for those particular employees. Employers also do not have to pay federal unemployment taxes for J1 students.

Withholdings and W4:

J1 students should fill out a W4 form just like any other employee and can choose their state and federal withholdings to fit their preference. J1 students will not be automatically filed as exempt from Federal and State taxes, but you can choose to file as exempt if he/she does not believe he/she is subject to withholding. Please write J1 Student on the top of the W4 before submitting the form to BizChecks for processing.

For further information to share with your J1 employees, you may refer them to this Publication 4011, Foreign Student and Scholar Resource Guide, published by the IRS: