This information refers to J-1 exchange visitors in the following categories: Professor, Research Scholar, Short-Term Scholar, and Student Intern.
U.S. Tax Information for Nonresident Aliens
All foreign nationals living, visiting, working, or studying in the U.S. are responsible for compliance with U.S. laws and regulations. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the U.S. government tax authority, has issued strict regulations regarding the taxation and reporting of payments made to non-U.S. citizens.
As a result, the University of Florida may be required to withhold U.S. income tax and file reports with the IRS in connection with payments made by UF to students, faculty, staff, or guests who are not U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents (LPR or “green card holders”). This includes financial aid, scholarships, fellowships, awards, or compensation for services performed.
For detailed information about filing income tax return forms as a foreign national residing in the U.S., see the IRS site on Taxation of Nonresident Aliens.
Federal Tax Treatment
J-1 exchange visitors are typically ineligible to file as a resident for tax purposes unless they have resided in the U.S. for at least two (2) calendar years.
- Exchange visitors who have spent fewer than two (2) calendar years in the U.S. must file their tax returns with a “nonresident alien” classification.
- Exchange visitors who have spent more than two (2) calendar years may or may not be required to file their tax returns with a “resident alien” classification.
It is important to note that tax regulations for students differ from other exchange visitors. Please review the IRS site for filing requirements and information for international taxpayers.
The U.S. maintains income tax treaties with more than 50 countries. Certain taxable payments made by UF to a foreign national may be exempt from a U.S. tax based on a tax treaty between the U.S. and the foreign national’s home country.
The existence of a tax treaty does not automatically ensure an exemption from taxation. Rather, the foreign national must satisfy the exemption requirements set forth in the tax treaty. In order to be considered for a tax treaty exemption, all appropriate federal forms must be completed.
For more information, download the IRS document P901 “U.S. Tax Treaties.”
Tax Preparation Programs
Do not use TurboTax or other resident tax programs/services.
UFIC provides international students and scholars with free access to Sprintax, a specialized federal/8843 tax preparation program designed for foreign nationals. It is made available each spring through a secure online portal. UFIC will email additional information, including how to access the portal, to students and scholars once the portal is activated.
Sprintax has a built-in feature to calculate the Substantial Presence Test (SPT) and determine the user’s appropriate tax filing classification.
People in the U.S. must file their tax returns with the IRS by the tax deadline each year. Typically, the deadline is April 15, or the next business day if April 15 falls on a weekend.
Additional resources for international students and scholars are provided throughout the tax filing period. UFIC will send announcements for these resources as they become available each year.
For more information or additional questions, email UFIC-ISSDA@ufic.ufl.edu.