Hiring Independent Contractors

When should we hire someone overseas as an independent contractor?

To minimize risk and ensure compliance with foreign laws, it is recommended to hire abroad, wherever possible,  through a Professional Employer Organization (PEO) or an institutional payment (IP) arrangement. An institutional payment (IP) arrangement is usually the most efficient and often the least costly way of hiring abroad. The host institution assumes the payroll administration and responsibilities to comply with local laws. This method should be considered whenever possible. If the individual is not affiliated with any organization abroad, using a professional employer organization (PEO) is the recommended option. 

In certain cases, the independent contractor method may be an acceptable alternative. Independent contractors can be directly hired by the University in situations where the candidates meet the definition of an independent contractor both in the U.S. and in the country where the individual will be working.

What information is needed from departments to start the hiring process?

Country of hire

Citizenship of individual

Copy of passport

Individual’s contact details

Appointment length with start and end dates

Updated CV

Job descriptions with detailed responsibilities

Appointment Form (if a DoF appointment)

Potential salary and benefits, such as health and other insurances, accommodation, travel expenses, etc.


Departments compile all the above information and send it to Global Finance. They will determine if a PEO or IP arrangement is feasible, and if not, collaborate with Kevin Licciardi from the Office of General Counsel to research the independent contractor option. Once Kevin clears any legal concerns, Global Finance will coordinate with related departments for contract drafting and payment processing. 

For check: name and address of payee OR for wire transfer: account name, account number, bank name, bank address, and ABA/SWIFT code Account number, project/grant number, and fund number
  • Form W9 (U.S. residents) or W-8BEN (non-U.S. residents) completed and signed by the individual hired
  • A copy of the signed offer letter

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