Topcoder begins the payment process for Data Science and Development challenges one business day after each challenge is concluded. This will happen automatically following the end of final review (for a successful challenge) or when all submissions have failed screening or review. For Design challenges, payments are triggered when the winners are selected. Members control the frequency and amount of their payments. To get paid, follow these steps:
Step 1. Update Your Profile
Make sure your Topcoder profile is up to date with your full name and a complete and accurate address. If these are not completed, it will delay your payment. Update your member profile now. Member Name Changes The Topcoder Terms of Service (TOS) require that accurate information be provided in your member profile. A member can update the name listed in their member profile at any time prior to the time that a payment has been set up. Once a payment has been created, the member will need to contact the payments team (email@example.com) in order to update their name with any changes. A copy of government-issued identification may be required for name changes.
Step 2. Complete a tax form.
All members need to have a tax form on file before they can be paid. There are two options – a W-9 or a W-8BEN. To see which one you will need to fill out, please read below: THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS INTENDED TO EXPLAIN WHICH TAX FORMS TOPCODER REQUIRES FOR PAYMENT. THIS IS NOT A COMPLETE DISCUSSION ON TAXES AND WITHHOLDING, AND SHOULD NOT IN ANY CASE BE TAKEN AS TAX ADVICE. IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF EACH MEMBER TO DETERMINE WHICH TAX FORM SHOULD BE COMPLETED AND SENT TO TOPCODER. TOPCODER ENCOURAGES ITS MEMBERS TO CONSULT THE INSTRUCTIONS OF EACH FORM AND/OR CONSULT AN ATTORNEY, TAX PROFESSIONAL, OR OTHER EXPERT FOR ADVICE IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING WHICH FORM YOU SHOULD COMPLETE AND/OR THE PROPER COMPLETION OF THAT FORM.
Who needs to complete Form W-9?
Individuals meeting the following conditions: • You are a US citizen or other US person (such as a resident alien); and • You are receiving any form of payment from Topcoder.
Why do I need to complete Form W-9?
Topcoder must receive your correctly completed W-9 to report to the IRS income paid to you. Topcoder's policy is not to issue payments to US members until a properly completed Form W-9 is received from the member. Complete Form W-9 Instructions for Form W-9
Who needs to complete Form W-8BEN?
Individuals meeting the following conditions: • You are NOT a US citizen or other US person (such as a foreign person, non-resident alien or foreign national); and • You are receiving any form of payment from Topcoder.
Why do I need to complete Form W-8BEN?
Under current IRS guidance (See (1) below), foreign persons performing services* outside of the U.S. are not subject to income tax withholding. However, Topcoder requires all such members to provide a properly filled out W-8BEN prior to issuing payment. In addition, prize money paid to foreign persons who are not performing services* (such as winning an SRM competition) is subject to withholding taxes. The W-8BEN is required to: • Establish that you are not a U.S. person • Claim that you are the beneficial owner of the income for which Form W-8BEN is being provided. Topcoder's policy is not to issue payments to foreign members until a properly completed Form W-8BEN is received from the member. Complete Form W-8BEN Instructions for Form W-8BEN
Who may be eligible to claim tax treaty benefits under Form W-8BEN?
Individuals meeting the following conditions: • You are NOT a US citizen or other US person (such as a resident alien); and • You did not perform services*.
What is the potential benefit of claiming tax treaty benefits under Form W-8BEN?
If you are a foreign person, non-resident alien or foreign national who is not performing services*, Topcoder will withhold taxes on the payment. You may claim exemption from or reduction of the rate that will be withheld for taxes if there is an applicable income tax treaty by completing the necessary parts of Form W-8BEN. TOPCODER CAN NOT ADVISE YOU ON THE EXISTENCE OF AN INCOME TAX TREATY. FURTHERMORE, TOPCODER CAN NOT ASSIST YOU IN DETERMINING YOUR ABILITY TO CLAIM A REDUCED RATE OF, OR EXEMPTION FROM, WITHHOLDING. ONCE A MEMBER CLAIMING THE BENEFIT OF A REDUCED TAX WITHHOLDING RATE PURSUANT TO A TAX TREATY PROVIDES ALL NECESSARY FORMS AND INFORMATION TO TOPCODER, TOPCODER WILL MAKE AN INDEPENDENT ASSESSMENT BASED ON THE INFORMATION PROVIDED.
How do I claim tax treaty benefits under Form W-8BEN?
W-8BEN tax forms will be processed with the standard default 30% tax withholding percentage unless they are properly completed. All members completing the W-8BEN are required to fill out at least the following boxes: In Part I: Box 1 - Name Box 3 - Type of Beneficial Owner Box 4 - Permanent Residence Address Box 5 - Mailing Address (if different from Box 4) In Part IV: Sign and date the form If a member wishes to claim the applicability of a withholding percentage of less than 30% pursuant to a tax treaty between their country of residence and the United States, then additional information must be provided. At a minimum, the member would need to provide the following additional information: In Part I: Box 6 - US Taxpayer ID number In Part II: Box 9(a) - provide your country of residence Box 10: -Specify the number of the Article of the treaty between the United States and your country of residence under which you are claiming benefit of the lower withholding percentage; -Specify the lower withholding percentage you are claiming; -Specify the type of income on which you are claiming the lower withholding percentage; and -Provide a brief explanation of your reasoning for why you feel you are entitled to claim the lower withholding percentage pursuant to the applicable Article of the applicable treaty. Please note you will need to provide a separate W-8BEN for each different type of income on which you are claiming a lower withholding percentage. Topcoder will make an independent assessment of the W-8BEN based on the information provided. A failure to provide the appropriate and accurate information in claiming a lower withholding percentage pursuant to a tax treaty will result in a default 30% tax withholding percentage.
Taxes Withheld for Members Completing Form W-8BEN:
Taxes will be withheld from the following payment types for those members who have submitted a Form W-8BEN: - Data Science/Algorithm Prizes (SRMs, tournaments, or other similar challenges) - Royalties - Referral Bonuses - Certain Digital Run bonuses (the portion of Digital Run bonus earned on submissions which did not place in 1st or 2nd place of the contest) *For purposes of determining which tax form is required from members, topcoder interprets "performing services" to include all services and competitions in which the member assigns ownership of the winning submission in exchange for compensation. (1) See IRS Notice 2001-4 (as of 8/21/13); http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/n-01-4.pdf
Step 3: Choose a Payment Method.
Members can be paid by one of the following methods:
Step 4: Select Payment(s) to be Paid
Members can track the status of their payments through the Payments page under "My Topcoder". There will be a "Release Date" on all payments.
A payment's "Release Date" will be 30 days after its creation date. Once the "Release Date" is reached, a member can select a payment to be paid. Select “Pay Me” for the sum of payment(s) you'd like to be paid.
*** Note: The date when you actually receive your payment will depend on the payment method you select.
Payments paid via Payoneer or PayPal will be processed immediately.
If you elect to be paid by Western Union, your payment request will be queued and processed semi-monthly, on the 15th and last business day of the month. If the 15th or last day of the month falls on a weekend or holiday, Western Union payments will be processed the next business day. In order to be included in the semi-monthly payments, you need to select which payments you would like to be paid for by 10:00 AM EST on the day of the scheduled payment.
If you have any questions regarding the information on this page, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please be sure to include both your Topcoder handle and your full name in all of the correspondence.
Step 5: Payment Tracking
Members can track the status of their payments using this help article https://help.topcoder.com/hc/en-us/articles/360015720553-Payment-Tracking-
Development Challenge Payments
For development challenges, first place winner prize will be processed in two installments of 75% and 25%. The installments will be paid 30 days, after completion of the challenge.
If the winner does not provide support during the 30 days of challenge completion, the 25% will be forfeited. Support tasks beyond bug fixing will be enumerated in the competition specification.
For other place winners, the prize money will be paid in one installment, 30 days after completion of the challenge.
Any exceptions to this policy will be clearly stated in the challenge.