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I am based in Hong Kong, but I've been filing W8 (forgot which one exactly) to different companies for years. For Google Adsense, I don't even have to fill out W8.
Could anyone with experience shed light on this?
Your partner might just ask for this form because they don't know better or they cannot imagine that there are people who actually don't need to pay taxes in the US.
I'd just tell them about your experience with others. W7 seems to be for illegal immigrants or others, who don't have a social security number to file their tax return.