Every year, all international students studying in the United States must file a tax return. In 2023, this must be completed by Monday, April 18th. Our tax section contains all of the information and advice you need to file your tax return and, if necessary, seek professional assistance.
What forms do I need to submit?
- Every international student, along with their dependents, will need to file Form 8843 separately.
- If you have received income in the last calendar year then you will need to file Form 8843 and most likely Form 1040-NR also.
How do I submit these forms?
There are a number of ways that you can submit these forms:
- Do it yourself – The forms are all available online from the IRS, and you can print them, fill them out for each family member, and submit them directly to the IRS for processing.
- Do it yourself (with our help) – We have created an online IRS Form 8843 Wizard that automatically populates the Form 8843 for you. Fill out the web form with all of your information so that we can pre-populate Form 8843 with it. Examine it, sign and date it, and submit it to the IRS for processing.
- Expert Tax Advice – For a fee, Sprintax to provide expert tax advice and assistance. You can contact them directly if you require expert assistance or advice, which is especially useful for more complex tax returns.
Why should I file a tax return?
If an international student and their dependents (including spouses and children of all ages) were in the United States during the previous calendar year, they must file a tax return. While filing your tax return may appear difficult, there are several advantages to doing so aside from the fact that it is the law:
- You might get a refund – Some international students will qualify for a refund due to tax treaties and a lack of serious income if they’ve earned income in the US.
- Protect taxation of your worldwide income.
- You fulfill your visa obligations – All international students must file at least Form 8843 (see below) in order to remain legal under F, J, M & Q visas, even if you didn’t earn any money in the US.
Overview of the American Tax System
Americans and others who live in the United States must pay taxes to the state and federal governments, which is handled by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). When someone earns money, a portion of it is usually deducted automatically and sent directly to the government. Every January or so, organizations that pay individuals send a summary of how much money they paid you, as well as how much of that was sent to the government.
The purpose of filing your tax return is to report to the government all of your sources of income, what you have already paid, and what you still owe. It is also an opportunity to claim any deductions or exemptions that you may be entitled to. You calculate how much you should have paid in total at the end of the process. You get a refund if you paid more than you owed during the year. However, if you did not pay enough, you must make up the difference.