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New Member

I relocated overseas in Aug and my bank sent me a W8-BEN form. I know I am resident alien for tax for this year. Should I fill up W8-BEN now, or request to update W9?

The form was sent in response to my address change to an international address. Bank helpline employee was unable to provide a definite answer.
4 Replies
Level 6

I relocated overseas in Aug and my bank sent me a W8-BEN form. I know I am resident alien for tax for this year. Should I fill up W8-BEN now, or request to update W9?

You need to file a W-9.  Below is a citation from the IRS instructions for Form W-8BEN at:
   https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/iw8ben.pdf

"Do not use Form W-8BEN if you are described below.

You are a foreign entity documenting your foreign status, documenting your chapter 4 status, or claiming treaty benefits. Instead, use Form W-8BEN-E.

You are a U.S. citizen (even if you reside outside the United States) or other U.S. person (including a resident alien individual). Instead, use Form W-9 to document your status as a U.S. person.

You are acting as a foreign intermediary (that is, acting not for your own account, but for the account of others as an agent, nominee, or custodian). Instead, provide Form W-8IMY.

You are a nonresident alien individual who claims exemption from withholding on compensation for independent or dependent personal services performed in the United States. Instead, provide Form 8233 or Form W-4.

You are receiving income that is effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business in the United States, unless it is allocable to you through a partnership. Instead, provide Form W-8ECI. If any of the income for which you have provided a Form W-8BEN becomes effectively connected, this is a change in circumstances and Form W-8BEN is no longer valid with respect to such income. You must file Form W-8ECI. See Change in circumstances, later."

New Member

I relocated overseas in Aug and my bank sent me a W8-BEN form. I know I am resident alien for tax for this year. Should I fill up W8-BEN now, or request to update W9?

Does that mean I fill in a W-9 now and then next calendar year I fill in a W-8BEN? At which time point or event trigger do I fill up the W-8BEN?

The bank warned me that the W-8BEN is what they should send me in accordance with IRS rules, so they believe that is what I should fill up. I am increasingly confused. I know I must fill in W-8BEN at some point, but I'm not sure exactly when I should do that. I'm not sure if W-8BEN should be tagged to the event of changing address, or to the tax calendar year.
New Member

I relocated overseas in Aug and my bank sent me a W8-BEN form. I know I am resident alien for tax for this year. Should I fill up W8-BEN now, or request to update W9?

Did you end up solving your problem? I’m in a similar situation: I moved out of USA as of August 2019 for good. I was a resident alien when I left and I no longer have ties to US. Now I want to close my US retirement accounts (it’s October 2019), and Fidelity asks me to fill either W-9 or W-8BEN, whichever applies, and I don’t know which one applies to me. When do I stop being a resident alien after leaving the country? I saw responses to this question on IRS website that could interpreted as “as soon as you leave the country” and also elsewhere on IRS website that seems to be saying “until the year is over”.  Asking to anyone who’s reading this, thank you.

New Member

I relocated overseas in Aug and my bank sent me a W8-BEN form. I know I am resident alien for tax for this year. Should I fill up W8-BEN now, or request to update W9?

Yes, I did. In the end I really had to bug the bank and they finally told me that I should wait until the next calendar year and send the W-8BEN to my bank in the US. Hope this helps!