Filing Income Taxes

All F-1 visa students and their dependents are required to submit documentation to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for tax purposes, even if you did not work or receive any income.  This means that everyone will file something.

Download ISP's Tax Quick Guide

 Tax Filing Deadlines & Instructions for 2019

  • Income from a U.S. source*  

    You will need to complete Form 8843 and you may need to also file a tax return such as Form1040NR by the tax filing deadline: April 15, 2019.

    ISP is unable to advise you on how to complete your tax return.  You may consult with a tax preparation service, professional tax accountant, or tax attorney who is knowledgeable about nonresident tax law.  

    *Income may include scholarships, grants, or stipends.

  • No income from a U.S. source  

    You will need to complete form 8843 and mail it to the IRS.  You can download this form on the IRS website here.  This is not a tax return and a social security number is not required.  It is an informational form required by the U.S. government for certain nonresidents and their dependents. 

Be wary of free tax services or tax prep software like Turbo Tax that are designed for resident tax payers and may not properly handle your non-resident tax status.  Two paid software services that are specifically designed to help non-residents file are Glacier Tax Prep & Sprintax.

Additional tax resources:

IRS Foreign Students & Scholars

State of California Franchise Tax Board

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)

NAFSA Federal Income Tax Brochure


ISP staff are not tax experts and cannot provide you with advice on how to file your taxes.  Each individual has a unique tax situation and is responsible for his or her own taxes.  

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