Updates to instructor tax form requirements (effective January 1, 2024)
As a US-based company, Udemy is obligated by the US Internal Revenue Service to withhold tax from instructors’ US-based earnings where appropriate. To determine the correct withholding amount, we collect tax forms with key information like your name, country of residence, and tax identification number.
Each instructor is responsible for ensuring their tax information stays up to date by submitting new forms via the Payout & Tax settings page.
Beginning January 1, 2024, a valid tax form will be required to receive payout from Udemy. If an instructor doesn’t have a valid form on file at the time of payout, payment will be suspended. Once a valid form is received, payment will be unsuspended and we’ll trigger payout of all pending earnings within 1-2 weeks, applying the tax withholding rate determined by the form submitted.
With this change, we’ll make updates to the Revenue Report to help make it clear what each instructor can expect at their next payout, and any action needed to unblock payment.
What does this mean for instructors?
For most published instructors, the updated policy won’t feel any different than the current one. But for instructors who don’t have a valid tax form on file, failing to provide one will look different starting in 2024.
Historically, instructors who didn’t submit a valid tax form were subject to maximum withholding (24% of all earnings), but could continue to receive payment each month. With this new policy, we’ll wait to issue payment until a valid form is received, and calculate withholding based on that form.
What will happen to instructors who go a long time without submitting a valid tax form?
We want to give all instructors plenty of time to submit a valid tax form and receive payment. That said, in cases where an instructor has continued to make no attempt to provide tax information over many months or even years, we reserve the right to unpublish that content. Likewise, we’ll hold on to pending payments as long as possible, but after considerable time with no tax identification, we may be required to turn these funds over to the relevant government authority.
If your content is at risk of removal or your payment is at risk of becoming unavailable because of a long-term failure to provide tax information, we’ll notify you well in advance.
How can instructors prepare to submit a tax form and avoid disruption of payout?
We provide a step-by-step form submission platform to simplify the process of filling out US tax forms. You can trigger submission of a form from the Payout & Tax settings page if you already have earnings pending payout (today), or if you have a paid course (early 2024). On this page, you can also now update how you’d like to receive your year-end tax forms—electronically or via post.
The most important information you’ll need is the name of the primary beneficiary of your Udemy earnings (either your name or your business’) and your tax identification number, if applicable.
You can check out several great instructor tax resources in our Help Center. If you’re stuck, you can reach out to our Support team using the “Contact us” button at the side of any article, like the ones linked above. While we can’t tell you what to put on your form – only a tax advisor can do this – we can help you understand the information we’re asking for and get you set up to earn on Udemy without interruption.
The Udemy Instructor Team