Filing a U.S. Tax Return

Humboldt State University cannot provide individual tax advice or assist you with filing a tax return. We can only provide general guidelines to get you started in preparing your taxes. No information on this site may be considered formal tax advice. Please consult appropriate tax counsel as necessary if you need to file.

For the most current, up-to-date information, please visit the IRS Foreign Students and Scholars website.

Please note that there is no minimum dollar amount of income which triggers a filing requirement for nonresidents. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires all international students and scholars to file federal tax forms, whether or not they had earned income during the tax year. In addition, F-2 and J-2 dependents must also file certain tax forms.

In the US, tax forms are filed in the current year (January-April) for the previous year. For example, if you had any US source income in 2015, the tax-filing deadline would be April 15, 2016. If you had no US source income in 2015, you have until June 15, 2016 to file appropriate forms. (Please note that dates and deadlines are approximations, provided as example only).

All international students and scholars must also file state tax forms if their income in the previous year was more than a certain amount. J-2s may also need to file.

Tax definitions of resident and non-resident are different from immigration definitions. This information is for students and scholars who qualify as non-residents for tax purposes. If you are a resident for tax purposes you will need to complete the same tax forms as US citizens. You can either prepare your own tax return or hire a qualified professional tax preparer.

Glacier Tax Prep Software for Federal Tax

Glacier Tax Prep is a great resource that can be used to determine your resident status for tax purposes and prepare your federal income tax forms. However, it does not file the tax return electronically. You must print, sign, and mail the tax returns/forms generated by Glacier Tax Prep. Cost is only $34.00 USD. You are not obligated to use this software. You can complete the tax forms on your own, use Turbo Tax software, or use the services of a professional tax firm. Regardless of how you choose to complete your tax forms, you should keep all copies of your tax returns. You may need them when applying for future immigration benefits.

California State Tax

Find information on filing California State tax.