The following information will give you a basic understanding of your responsibilities and tell you how to get more information. Do not construe the information presented here as individual tax advice. Federal income tax obligations of students of F, J, or M status:
Everyone in the United States, regardless of immigration status, is responsible each year for submitting a complete and accurate income tax statement to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), an agency of the U.S. Treasury Department. Americans call the process "filing a tax return." Foreign students, regardless of whether they work or earn income while in the United States, must file an appropriate return each year.
In many countries, the government assesses and collects from individuals the tax they owe. In the United States, however, it is each individual's personal responsibility to meet his or her tax obligation; the government will not do it for you, but it will penalize you if you do not do it yourself.
The Center for Global Engagement staff is neither qualified nor permitted to give individual tax advice. Students with complicated tax situations may wish to consult with a tax preparation service, professional tax accountant, or tax attorney who is knowledgeable about nonresident tax law. During the spring semester, the CGE sends an email to the international population with links to the tax forms and also a link to Sprintax which is an online international tax preparation service.
Please visit the following websites for additional information about your tax responsibilities: U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens and Sprintax.