NonImmigrant Tax Information

U.S. tax laws are very complex. These resources should help you better understand your tax obligation to successfully submit your tax forms. This information is meant to be a general introduction and should not be considered legal tax advice. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the U.S. government agency that collects taxes. Visit their website at the link below for official regulations surrounding taxes and foreign students or scholars. 

U.S. tax laws are very complex. These resources should help you better understand your tax obligation to successfully submit your tax forms. This information is meant to be a general introduction and should not be considered legal tax advice. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the U.S. government agency that collects taxes. Visit their website at the link below for official regulations surrounding taxes and foreign students or scholars. 

Main Content

2022 Tax Filing Deadline

April 15, 2023

Tax forms must be postmarked in the mail by this date!

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the U.S. government agency that collects taxes. For the official regulations regarding all aspects of U.S. taxes for international students and scholars, please click the “IRS Regulations for Internationals” button at the top of this page.

General Information and Reminders

These are key points to remember. You can find more detailed information under the Frequently Asked Questions below.

  • This information is meant to be a general introduction and should not be considered legal tax advice.
  • You must file forms with the IRS each year regardless of whether or not you were employed or earned income
  • A portion of each payment you receive (paychecks, scholarships, etc.) is withheld and sent to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
  • A social security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number is required to file for a refund.
  • Your employer will issue tax forms in early spring with a summary of your income and withholdings from the previous year.
  • Students and scholars who are considered “non-resident aliens” cannot use traditional, online tax preparation software (such as turbo tax and others).
  • It is your responsibility to understand and meet your tax obligations.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to many of the frequently asked questions regarding taxes that must be paid by international students and faculty.

Yes. As an F-1/J-1 student or J-1 scholar, U.S. laws require you to file IRS tax forms each year, even if you did not earn income. Which forms you file depend on many factors, including but not limited to: your visa status, the purpose of your visit, the number of days present in the United States, the amount of income earned and any tax treaty between your home country and the U.S. It is your responsibility to understand and meet your tax obligations.

If you are a nonresident alien for tax purposes, yes. If you were present in the U.S. during the previous calendar year, you must file IRS Form 8843. It is a simple, paper form, available in OISVS’s office, that can only be submitted by mail. Students with no earned income only filing the 8843 have a later deadline.

An estimate of your U.S. tax responsibility is withheld from your paycheck or scholarship at the time of payment and sent to the IRS throughout the year. This withholding may not equal the exact amount owed at the end of the year. If too much was withheld, you may be eligible for a refund. If not enough was withheld, you may owe more to the IRS. A social security number or ITIN (individual taxpayer identification number) is required to file for a refund.

Sources of taxable income may include:

  • Wages that appear on a W-2
  • Scholarship or fellowship income that requires performed services (i.e. teaching assistant, athletic scholarships)
  • Scholarships, fellowships and grants
  • Investment income
  • Gambling income

Between January and March of every year, employers issue tax documents with a summary of your income and tax withholding from the previous year. These tax documents are the W-2, a 1099 or 1042-S. You will use these documents to complete your tax forms before April 15.

Yes! Students and scholars considered “nonresident aliens” are able to use Glacier Tax Prep software specifically designed for your status. OISVS announces access information in the spring via email.

Glacier Tax Prep is a tax return preparation software program designed only for nonresident alien students, scholars, trainees, researchers and other educational immigration statuses to prepare your U.S. federal income tax return Form 1040NR.

Non-residents cannot use traditional, online tax preparation software.

There are several ways to find out.

If the result is that you are a nonresident for U.S. tax purposes, you can use GTP to prepare your taxes.  The OISVS purchases a limited number of licenses for enrolled ACU international students, and distributes these in March each year.  Students unable to use a free license may purchase their own license using the link listed below.

Students with no taxable income still need to fill out the 8843, which does not require the use of GTP tax prep.

If you are a resident for tax purposes, you cannot use GTP. You may be able use free tax preparation software listed on the IRS web site. Other options include purchasing commercial tax software or hiring a private tax accountant. Two examples of the many such products available are Turbotax or H&R Block At Home™.

An ITIN is an individual taxpayer identification number. It serves in place of a social security number if you do not qualify for one and is generally used by students who receive taxable scholarships and do not work on campus.

After you complete your Glacier registration in the Finance office, bring the W8BEN to OISVS for assistance with the ITIN application process.

If you were employed or paid by ACU, you will need a social security number. Students not employed who have taxable scholarships should apply for an ITIN. Both of these can be applied for at the local Social Security Administration office.

Learn more about applying for a Social Security number.

 Applying for a Social Security Number

No problem! You will have one or the other but not both. If you have submitted tax forms previously using an ITIN but now you have a social security number, use the social security number.

If you owe taxes, there may be penalties assessed if you do not file your tax return on time. These penalties are assessed each month, so we encourage you to file as soon as possible. Check out this IRS resource for more information.

**Disclaimer**
This information is intended only for international students and scholars who are non-resident alien taxpayers with income sources and level typical of students and scholars at Abilene Christian University. Although the information contained in this site has been reviewed carefully and should be adequate to assist most international students and scholars, it is not a substitute for advice obtained from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or a qualified tax accountant. If your visa status has changed in the past year, or you believe you have a complicated tax issue, please consult the IRS or a qualified tax accountant.