International Student Services

Tax Information for International Students

Important note: The IPO staff are NOT trained in taxation, and therefore cannot answer specific tax questions or help you prepare your tax forms. Ultimately, it is your responsibility to meet your tax obligations and do so accurately. The IPO recommends consulting a tax professional if you have any questions about your tax status.

Every international student is required to file with the Internal Revenue Service annually. ALL international students and scholars who were in the U.S. for any period of time during any calendar year must file a federal tax statement, called an income tax return. Some international students and scholars will need to file a state tax return(s). If you did not have any U.S. source income, you will only file Form 8843. If you have U.S. source income, your next step is to determine your tax filing status and you will likely have to complete a 1040-NR Form.

Tax forms may vary depending on your individual residency status for tax purposes and employment status. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), an agency of the U.S. government, determines tax residency. Before you file your taxes, you must determine your tax residency status, which may be different from your immigration status.

Federal Tax Filing - International students are responsible for determining if they must file annual taxes with the United States Internal Revenue Service. Please use the following information from the IRS as one of the resources to determine your personal requirements.

State Tax Filing - In addition to filing a federal return, some students must also file a CT state return. International students are responsible for knowing if they should file taxes for the State of Connecticut. Please visit the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services to determine your requirements.

Tax Facts:

  • If you receive U.S. source income, including wages, stipend, or scholarship funds, you will likely have federal and state tax withheld from your checks (unless you benefit from a tax treaty.)
  • The U.S. tax system is a pay-as-you go system in that there may be automatic tax withholdings from your paycheck, stipend or financial aid. These means that in some instances your available income will be reduced by the tax withholdings. When you file your annual tax report in April of each year, you will calculate the exact amount of tax due. Some years you may get a refund and in others you may owe additional taxes.
  • The tax year is from January 1 to December 31 of any given year. You file your tax return in the spring of the following year with a filing deadline of mid-April. Please DO NOT wait until the last moment to file taxes or request any documents.
  • You have to file a federal income tax form every year you are in the United States, even if you did not work.

Goodwin's Business, Management, and Advanced Manufacturing Department frequently hosts the annual Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Through VITA, IRS-certified volunteers, including Goodwin's business program students, provide free, basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals. Appointments have historically been available January through April on Saturdays at the Business & Manufacturing Center, One Pent Road. Please reach out to the Business Department for more information.

Here are some further resources for international students on the internet: