Nonresident vs. Resident for Tax Purposes

Why is Tax Residency Important?

Your tax residency (whether you are a nonresident alien or a resident alien for tax purposes) determines how you are taxed and which tax forms you need to fill out. You can find out more about tax residency on the IRS "Introduction to Residency Under U.S. Tax Law" page.

Determining Your Tax Residency Status

In general, students in F or J status are considered nonresident aliens for tax purposes for the first five calendar years of their stay in the US. Scholars in J status are considered nonresident aliens for tax purposes for the first two calendar years of their stay. Please note that this is a general guideline only. If you want to accurately determine your tax residency status, please see the "Resources to Determine Your Tax Filing Status" section below.

After having spent a certain amount of time in the United States, an international student or scholar who was originally a nonresident alien for immigration purposes may be reclassified as a resident alien for tax purposes. It's important to know your tax filing status so you can complete the correct tax forms.

Resources to Determine Your Tax Filing Status

You can quickly find out your residency by completing a few questions on GLACIER Tax Prep (GTP). If GLACIER Tax Prep determines that you are a nonresident alien for tax purposes, you can proceed to use GLACIER Tax Prep to complete the federal (not state) tax forms. GLACIER Tax Prep is not available for international students or scholars who are determined to be resident aliens for tax purposes.

Another resource to determine tax residency is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). See the links below:

F-1 and J-1 Students

J-1 Scholars

Alien Residency Examples