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J.J.
02-16-2006, 05:11 AM
I don't have US Social Security Number. I live in the US temporarily, and because of my visa status I can't get a Social Security Number (however, I have a Tax Payer ID#). I wonder if this may be a problem to get my book published in the US. Will an agent (I mean US agent) want to take me on as a client? Won't there be a problem if I find a publisher and have to sign a publishing contract? I know many US publishers publish books written by foreigh writers, but I'd like to make sure before I start submitting queries. The manuscript is written in English.
I'll appreciate any information. Thank you.

Cathy C
02-16-2006, 07:48 PM
You will want to consult with a U.S. accountant who is familiar with entertainment accounting. Publishers primarily pay gross wages on a form 1099. (as opposed to regular wages, which are reported on a W-2). The author is responsible for withholding appropriate federal, state and local taxes and submitting them when due. The publisher submits the amount paid to you on a separate form, so the IRS will be expecting to see a matching report from the author.

I don't know how your status here would affect taxes, but I'm pretty sure that if income is paid in the U.S., taxes are owed. Likewise on whatever state where you live. This question might be a bit beyond the scope of an H&R Block employee, but you could always try -- they're pretty easy to find this time of year.

Good luck!

veinglory
02-16-2006, 08:17 PM
[I am not an agent--just a busy body who just did their non-resident US txes]

While paid *and living* in the US you would probably need to pay tax either under schedule E (royalites) or as a self-employed person (if you have deductions).

I am not aware of many publishers not wanting foreign writers, but as you (like me) seem to be only temporarily in the US I think you need to go with those who will take on us foreigners.

MMo
02-16-2006, 08:59 PM
I don't have US Social Security Number. I live in the US temporarily, and because of my visa status I can't get a Social Security Number (however, I have a Tax Payer ID#).

Your taxpayer ID # should be sufficient, for reporting non-wage earnings, but just to be sure you might see if this is covered at http://irs.gov. You also might check with someone at your embassy to see if there are any restrictions on your visa about your earnings.

Mo

UrsusMinor
02-22-2006, 12:20 AM
Yes, you will need to pay taxes--if you still live in the US when you get an advance. When you receive money you will need an SSN or a TIN; getting a TIN is easy.

No, an agent won't care if you have an SSN. An agent won't care where you live or what your residency status is, or anything else. An agent will only care if you have a book she can sell.

Worry about the book. An agent will only wonder about the SSN/TIN problem when it's time for her to send you money. You should have such problems.