U.S. Tax Information for International Students

Glacier Tax Prep (GTP)

GLACIER TAX Prep Software   

OGI has licensed a web-based tax preparation software called GLACIER Tax Prep to assist international students in preparing U.S. income tax paperwork. You will receive an access code to GLACIER Tax Prep in your eagles email account.

We encourage you to complete your U.S. tax return as soon as possible. The quicker you begin -- the quicker you will finish (and receive any tax refund due to you!). Don't wait, finish your tax documents today! The tax filing deadline for nonresident aliens with income is April 15. If you file your tax documents late, you may have to pay a penalty. Please note that the last two weeks of tax season are a very busy time to use GLACIER Tax Prep so you may experience delays if you submit questions to GLACIER Tax Prep support. We encourage you to complete your U.S. tax forms as soon as possible.

US Tax Information

Do I have to file taxes?  Why?

All international students, scholars and their dependents present in the U.S. under F-1, F-2, J-1, or J-2 nonimmigrant status must file IRS Form 8843  "Statement for Exempt Individuals and Individuals with a Medical Condition" even if they received no income in 2017. Form 8843 is an informational statement  required by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that shows nonresident status for tax purposes.  It basically says that you are a nonresident for tax purposes currently exempt from filing U.S. taxes.

Students and scholars who meet certian conditions may become residents for tax purposes.  This is different from your immigration status, and only refers to your taxpayer status.  Residents for tax purposes file tax forms the same way a U.S. Citizen or Legal Permanent Resident would, but their immigration status does not change.  The software offered by OGI can help you determine whether you are a resident for tax purposes.

Tax deadline for most filers with U.S. sourced income is April 15

If you are legally employed while in the United States, some taxes will probably be withheld from your wages and paid by your employer directly to the U.S. tax authorities. You may be entitled to a refund of some or all of this amount, but you must apply to have the money returned.

Important things you should know:

  • International students in nonimmigrant status (i.e. F-1, J-1, etc.) and their dependents ARE REQUIRED to file a tax form with the U.S. government for each tax year they are in the U.S. regardless of whether they earned any income;
  • Nonresident aliens must file paper forms by mail with the IRS;
  • Most international students and scholars are NOT PERMITTED to file their tax returns online through TURBOTAX or similar software;
  • Most international students and scholars should NOT use outside tax preparation services found in the community such as H&R Block, Liberty, and other companies;
  • US scholarships covering room and board, course fees,bookreimbursementsand medical insurance are taxable (applies to some athletic scholarships at EWU) and filing taxes requires an extra document called 1042-S

Filing federal income tax forms every year is the personal responsibility of each international student and visiting scholar. OGI has provided this information as a service to help you meet your tax filing obligations. Please be aware that you are ultimately responsible for filing and the accuracy of your income tax returns. University staff members are unauthorized to give individual tax advice.

Filing tax forms correctly is very important; failure to do so can impact your future visa and/or status requests in the U.S.  Each spring OGI will provide limited income tax assistance for international students and their dependents.  This assistance includes internet tax preparation software called Glacier Tax Prep (GTP) at no cost to you.  Access codes are sent to students and scholars in late February to mid-March.  Please make sure you check your Eagles email regularly and follow us on Facebook for updates and information. 

If you are having trouble with Glacier Tax Prep, please visit OGI for assistance.

More Information and resources (external links)

 

US Tax Forms (external links)

Forms for filing as a Non-Resident Alien:

Form 1040NR-EZ
Form 1040NR
Form 8843

*All non-residents (for tax purposes) who were present in the U.S. in F-1, F-2, J-1, J-2, M-1, or M-2 status during the previous calendar year must file Form 8843, even if they received no income during the previous year.  This form does not require a social security number or ITIN. For assistance with filing Form 8843, please use Glacier Tax Prep (GTP).

Other Forms:

Form 1095-B -
  • Provides information about health coverage, including who was covered and when the coverage was in effect. See information on using this form on the IRS website.
Form 843
  • Form 843 - for refund of Social Security and Medicare tax withheld in error. You will also need to complete Form 8316.
Form W-7
  • Form W-7 - to request ITIN numbers for your dependents.
Form 1040X
Form 4868
  • Form 4868 - for extension of time to file.
Form 1042-S
  • Form 1042-S- for foreign person's U.S source income subject to withholding (for instance, athletic scholarships that include room and board).
Most commonly used publications