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Division of Finance and Administration

The GLACIER system: Guidance for Nonresident Alien Tax Compliance for students and employees

Click here for GLACIER updates due to COVID-19. 



UC Merced (UCM) administers the Nonresident Alien tax compliance through the use of an online system known as GLACIER. The system is used to calculate the tax withholding for all payments made to a foreign national.

GLACIER is a secure web-based Nonresident Alien (NRA) tax compliance system that foreign visitors can use to provide their immigrant and tax data to UC Merced via the internet 24 hours a day. GLACIER helps determine tax residency, withholding rates and income tax treaty eligibility. GLACIER also manages NRA's paperwork, maintains NRA's data and prepares tax forms and required statements. 

If an employee is a nonresident for tax purposes and works outside of the U.S., no GLACIER tax record is required. 

Who is this process applicable to?

If you are one of the following types of individuals listed below, please contact department personnel to initiate the Initial GLACIER Form described below. If unsure of who to contact, you may contact UC Merced’s Tax Services department via e-mail at  for further guidance. 

  • New foreign national student who received a scholarship or fellowship 
  • New foreign national who has entered an employment relationship with UC Merced 
  • A foreign visitor who is receiving payment for services from UC Merced 

If you are one of the individuals listed above and you have an existing GLACIER record, follow the instructions below under How does the GLACIER Process work? and update your record.

Foreign national students may receive a variety of payments from UC Merced. If they receive the following types of payments from UC Merced, they will need a GLACIER Record; 

  • Scholarship and fellowship payments 
  • Income as a student employee 

If you do not have a GLACIER Record, your department contact will need to fill out the initial GLACIER Form as discussed below. 

Note: The information and forms must be provided prior to any payment so that the correct tax withholding and reporting decisions are made; failure to do so may result in the maximum rate of tax withholding and/or delayed payment. 

For All Non-employee Relationships

Foreign visitors who are not U.S. Citizens, Permanent Residents, Refugees, Asylees, or nonresidents working out of the U.S. are required to complete a GLACIER record. These individuals tend to have the visa statuses with letter and number combinations such as F1, J1, H1B,O1,TN, B1, B2, WB, etc. 

How does the GLACIER Process work?

STEP 1: The process starts with the UC Merced Department.

  • UCM Payroll Services or the Department requestor completes the Initial GLACIER Information Form online and reviews with the foreign individual (i.e. the Non-US student, scholar, or employee).
  • By entering the form online, the form will automatically be sent to UC Merced Tax Services to create the record in the GLACIER system. 

STEP 2: The Payee (nonresident student or nonresident employee) will receive an email from UC Merced Tax Services noting their user ID and temporary password.

STEP 3: The Payeed must complete the following GLACIER Infomation Process:

Note: The user must access GLACIER and provide the requested information within 10 days of receiving the email message. If you do not provide the requested information within 10 days, the maximum amount of U.S. tax will be withheld from any payments made to you so performing the below steps within the timeframe is critical. 

  • Step 1: Logon to your GLACIER record at (you should have received a login ID and temporary password via e-mail)    
  • Step 2: Review and your information and make any updates, if necessary 
  • Step 3: Print and Review the GLACIER Tax Summary Report and any other forms that GLACIER generates for you.
    • For a GLACIER Tax Summary Report review guide, click HERE.
  • Step 4: Sign and date the GLACIER Tax Summary Report and any other applicable forms. 
  • Step 5: Attach the required document copies to the GLACIER Tax Summary Report (there is a list of required documents on the bottom of the Tax Summary Report). 
  • Step 6: Send the Tax Summary Report and supporting documentation to UC Merced Tax Services using the unique and secure Box link UC Merced Tax Services provides to you by email. 
    • For a step-by-step guideline on completing a GLACIER record, click HERE.

Additional information

For further assistance, please contact UC Merced Tax Services at