Income Tax Filing Compliance

PLEASE NOTE: The guidelines provided on this page are not a substitute for the advice of a trained tax preparer. Students are encouraged to consult with an expert (usually a CPA or enrolled agent) if they have any questions about their personal tax filing obligations.  Students in the following categories often find it particularly helpful to hire the help of an expert:
students with U.S. source income from states other than Ohio
students with U.S. source income in excess of $10,000
students with self-employment or 'gigging' income of any amount, but particularly if the amount is greater that $2,000The U.S. income tax filing requirement is based upon your total U.S. source income for the current tax year.  The current tax year is 2012; the forms you will file in April 2013 are to report income received between January 1, 2012 and December 31, 2012.

The information provided on this website is general in nature and is not a substitute for the advice of a qualified tax professional.  The staff of Oberlin College cannot prepare your taxes for you or answer detailed questions about your tax obligations.  Consult an expert tax preparer if you have questions about your tax-filing responsibility.  Local tax professionals can be found in the phone book or by using on-line search tools.


Do I need to pay income taxes?

Anyone in the United States who earns income is required to report it to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS determines if you will be required to pay taxes to the federal government. This includes income from wages, reception of a grant, fellowship, or scholarship; interest from stock options, lottery or gambling winnings; and any other type of non-wage income. You use your Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number to pay. (studyinthestates.dhs.gov

What forms do I need to file?

Form 8843

Form 8843 is not an income tax return.  It is an informational statement that the U.S. Government requires all persons present in F or J non-immigrant visa status to file if they have been present in the U.S. during the previous year.  This form must be filed even if the student or scholar received no income and was not required to file a tax return. This form is filled with the federal 1040 NR or 1040 NR EZ if those forms are also being filed, and by itself if those forms are not being filed.  

Form 8843 may completed through Glacier Tax Prep or printed and completed on its own.

Income Tax Forms

If you earned taxable income in the U.S. you will be sent documents in January or February that report the amount and type of income you earned.  Documents you may recieve include but are not limited to, form W-2; 1042-S; and 1099.  You will need to use these forms to complete your tax returns.

Federal: International students and scholars studying and working in the U.S. may be required to pay income taxes to the U.S. government. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the U.S. Department of Treasury is responsible for collecting federal income taxes.  To determine whether you owe any taxes, or are eligible for a refund for taxes that were taken out of your paycheck, you must complete and file a tax return. 

The federal filing deadline is normally April 15 for income earned during the previous calendar year.  For example, file your tax return by April 15, 2014 for income you earned between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013.

The federal income tax form for Non-Residents is the 1040 NR or the 1040 NR EZ.  This form can be completed through Glacier Tax Prep.

State and Local:  Each state, city, or county in the U.S. determines its own tax rules.  International student and scholars studying and working in the U.S. may be required to pay state and local income taxes in any state they earn income in.  The state and local form filing deadline is normally the same as the federal deadline.

The Ohio state and local income tax returns are: IT 1040, and SD 100.  There is no software support for these forms.  They must be downloaded and completed with the instructions provided by the Ohio department of taxation.

What if I have questions?

For questions with GLACIER Tax Prep use "Help" function in Glacier Tax Prep.

  • For questions regarding the 1040 NR or 1040 NR EZ: call the internal Revenue Service 1-800-829-1040.
  • For questions regarding the Ohio IT 1040 or SD 100: call the Ohio tax department 1-800-282-1780, or complete this form to send a question via email.

If you would like to hire a professional tax preparer to complete your taxes forms, search for "tax preparation" in on-line directories.  Current students should also check their emails from office of international students to see whether any local resources have been identified.

Note regarding R.I.T.A. form 57: We have been advised by tax professionals that non-residents are not required to complete this form.  If you receive a tax notice asking you to complete it, you should send R.I.T.A. a copy of your passport and F-1 visa.