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International Programs

Taxes

  • All international students & scholars must file with the IRS

  • You should not have Social Security and Medicare taxes withheld from your pay unless you have been in the country 5 years for tax purposes - if these taxes are deducted you can ask your employer to refund them and if they cannot ask them for a letter stating why.  You can then file with the IRS to have the money refunded to you

  • Students who do not work must file at least one form (8843) with the Internal Revenue Service

  • If you earned income through a campus job, (example: graduate assistant or campus employment) you must file a tax return, (either 1040-NR EZ or 1040-NR) if your income meets a certain amount that changes each year

  • Students who receive scholarship money are taxed on any amount that you receive that is above the cost of your tuition and fees unless your country has a tax treaty with the US

  • If your income is lower than required to file you may still wish to consider filing - you may receive some money back

  • If you file a federal return you should also file a state return - you may owe money to the state if none was deducted

  • The Center for International Education will hold tax workshops to show you how to properly file your tax returns and will e-mail out dates and times when determined

  • If you do not file taxes it could negatively affect you if you at some point if you should file for a change of status to an H1B, permanent resident etc.  If you apply for a change of status and they find that you owe taxes they may assess your tax and would charge penalties on the amount that you owe

  • If you have been in the US for 5 years or longer (total days) on an F or J Visa (or combination of) then you may be a resident for tax purposes - if so, then you will have to use a different tax software to file your taxes then Columbus State provides or consult a private tax accountant

  • Columbus State staff are not tax experts and cannot advise you on tax issues - you should consult a private tax accountant if you have questions beyond what we can answer

  • The University of Texas at Austin's International Office has an excellent website that provides information, resources and examples on nonresident alien tax preparation. Please visit http://www.utexas.edu/international/taxes/ if you are interested in learning more about the tax preparation process.