International Student Tax Guidelines 2017

Form 8843 must be filed by ALL international students in the U.S. regardless of your income and employment status in the U.S. This document is not a tax return.

    Form 8843 is required for all students. however, the 1040NR-EZ is required for single students earning income above $4,000. Income includes scholarship or grant money along with earnings from employment. If you are self-employed and have earned $400 or more since January 2015 then you will need to file taxes.

    Form 1040NR-EZ is your federal tax return form if you have lived/studied in the U.S. for 5 years or fewer. After 5 years you file the same form as U.S. residents. The form 1040NR-EZ must be filed by all international students who have received any type of U.S. income other than interest received from U.S. banks and credit unions.

    Mail Federal 8843 and 1040 NR-EZ completed forms by April 18, 2017 to:

    Department of the Treasury
    Internal Revenue Service Center
    Austin, TX 77301-0215 USA

    Minnesota taxes follow the same guidelines as the federal return form 1040NR-EZ. The M-1 form is required for single students earning income above $10,300. Income includes scholarship or grant money along with earnings from employment. If you are self-employed and have earned $400 or more since January 2015, then you will need to file taxes.

    You may receive an income-tax refund.
    • Most international students filing a non-resident tax return receive a tax refund.

    Take advantage of Tax Treaty benefits.

    • Tax treaties reduce tax liability of international students working in the United States. Using tax treaties can save you money and increase your tax refund. 

    Meet your requirements for U.S. visa.

    • International students and scholars are required to file taxes to maintain immigration status. Failing to do so can result in violation of your immigration status.
    The benefits of filing taxes are evident; you may receive money back and you will ensure that you have not violated your visa or be forced to pay a fine.

    According to the MN state revenue website, you do not qualify for a refund if:

    • "You are a nonresident alien living in Minnesota and:
        -your gross income was less than $4,000, and
        -you received more than 50 percent of your support from a relative."

    If you earned more than $4,000 income and receive less than 50 percent of your financial support from a relative, you should file this form as you may be eligible for a refund by filing the form M1-PR.