Tax Filing FAQ
Who has to File Tax Returns?
1. Do I have to file a Federal U.S. income tax return?
All international students and scholars who were in the U.S. for any period of time during the year 2017 in any visa type other than B1/B2 (Visitor) must file an annual income tax return with the U.S. federal government. In addition, some international students and scholars will also be required to file a New Jersey state income tax return.
2. Do I have to file a New Jersey state income tax return?
Also see FAQs 37-44.
If you earned income (wages) of $10,000 (filing as single) or $20,000 (filing as married) or more in the state of New Jersey during 2017, then you must file a New Jersey state income tax return. New Jersey offers several different ways to submit your tax return, including electronically and on paper. New Jersey’s tax website has all the information you need to file your tax return. If you wish to file your New Jersey State income tax return online, go to the State’s website for online filing at www.njwebfile.com. Please make sure you read all the instructions on the website. You may NOT file your NJ State income taxes using GLACIER Tax Prep.
3. I am an international student and I had no U.S. earned income or scholarship for 2017. Do I need to file?
Yes. You must simply file IRS Form 8843. You can complete this form by using GLACIER Tax Prep. GLACIER Tax Prep will also advise you on where you should mail this form.
4. I only arrived in the U.S. in December 2017 and I didn't work. Do I still have to file Form 8843?
Also see FAQs 28-32
Yes. If you were in the U.S. even 1 day in 2017, you must file Form 8843. You can complete form 8843 by using GLACIER Tax Prep.
5. If I worked in the U.S. in 2017, but have since returned to my home country, do I still have to file taxes in the United States?
Yes, all individuals who were present in the United States in 2017 must file a tax return for that year.
6. Are there any repercussions if I don't file tax returns?
One of the conditions of your visa is to follow U.S. laws. Payment of U.S. income tax due is required by law. If you owe taxes and don't file, the IRS can assess penalty and interest. There may also be immigration consequences if you fail to file taxes; applicants for permanent residency (green cards) are often asked to show proof of tax filing for their previous years in the U.S.
Filing Tax Returns using Glacier Tax Prep
7. How do I file my personal Federal income tax return?
Princeton University offers GLACIER Tax Prep, a free and easy-to-use tax filing software for international students and scholars. Use GLACIER Tax Prep to file your nonresident alien federal income tax returns. It will help to make your tax filing responsibilities easier. If you do not use GLACIER Tax Prep to file your federal taxes, you will need to file on your own or with the assistance of an outside professional tax preparer. We regret that the Davis International Center staff or other University staff cannot advise you on your individual taxes.
8. What does Glacier Tax Prep do?
As you answer the questions in GLACIER Tax Prep, it will:
- Determine your U.S. residency status for tax filing purposes. NOTE: Even though you are a nonresident alien for immigration purposes, you may be a U.S. resident for tax filing purposes. GLACIER Tax Prep will determine your tax filing status.
- Collect information about all types of income (if any) that you received to determine if you are eligible for a tax exemption based on a tax treaty or any other type of exemption.
- Gather additional information to make sure all applicable deductions or allowances are applied.
- Populate fields in all of the correct tax forms applicable to your situation.
- Allow you to print your tax return form and all attachments.
- Provide detailed instructions about how, when, and where to mail the tax return, as well as information about the documents necessary to attach and complete the tax return filing process.
9. How can I access Glacier Tax Prep?
You may access GLACIER Tax Prep in one of two ways:
1) If you are registered in GLACIER (the software used by the Princeton University Nonresident Tax Compliance and Reporting Team to track the tax status of nonresident aliens), you will receive an email from Glacier by March 15, 2018. The Glacier email will contain your link to GLACIER Tax Prep and instructions on how to access GLACIER Tax Prep.
2) WAIT UNTIL MARCH 15, 2018. If you do not receive an email from Glacier with your GLACIER Tax Prep login information by that date, then most likely you are not registered in GLACIER. You should email NTCR@princeton.edu and request assistance in registering for GLACIER Tax Prep. The subject of your email should state – GLACIER Tax Prep ACCESS. After NTCR reviews your records in Glacier, you should receive the email with your GLACIER Tax Prep log-in information or an explanation why your GTP log-in is not available.
10. Can I submit my non-resident tax forms electronically directly through Glacier Tax Prep?
NO, nonresident aliens cannot file federal tax reports electronically through GLACIER Tax Prep or any other electronic method. Once you supply GLACIER Tax Prep with all of the requested information, it will auto-populate the appropriate tax forms for you. You must print the forms and mail them to the address provided by GLACIER Tax Prep. The appropriate address will depend on the form you are filing.
11. I'm registered in Glacier, but can't get access to Glacier Tax Prep. Why not?
One reason could be that you have not fully completed your GLACIER record. If you have missing information or have not yet submitted your Tax Summary Form and document copies to the Princeton NTCR Tax Compliance Office, your information may not transfer to GLACIER Tax Prep. For assistance, contact NTCR@princeton.edu
Another reason may be that nonresident aliens who have passed the Substantial Presence Test are considered resident aliens for tax purposes, and cannot use GLACIER Tax Prep. If this is the case, you will not be given the option to use GLACIER Tax Prep when you log into GLACIER. You must instead file resident tax forms. See FAQs 22-24.
Tax Reporting Documents
12. What forms and documents do I need before I can begin using Glacier Tax Prep?
You should gather the following documents before you enter GLACIER Tax Prep.Depending on your type of income in 2017, you may or may not receive the following forms:
- W-2 Wage and Tax Statement - If you earned income in 2017, you will need your W-2 Form from Princeton University or from the employer under whom you earned income in 2017.
- Form 1042-S - A nonresident alien student or scholar who was employed and was exempt under a tax treaty in 2017 will receive a Form 1042-S. Any nonresident alien student or scholar who received a taxable fellowship, award, or stipend in 2017 will also receive a 1042-S. And any nonresident alien who received a non-employee service payment will receive a 1042-S.
- Form 1099 – Very few international students and scholars will receive the 1099 form. To request a duplicate or if you have questions about IRS 1099 form, contact the Financial Service Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 609-258-3080, or visit the Financial Service Center at 7 New South during regular University business hours, 8:45 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday .
- Passport and Visa documents, such as I-20 Form (F visa) or DS-2019 Form (J visa).
13. What is a Form W-2? I lost or never got my W-2. Can I get another one?
A Form W-2 is used to report U.S. federal or state wages and taxes. You will receive a Form W-2 only if you received compensation during 2017. Forms W-2 from Princeton University is available online for active faculty, staff and students to view and print. The Payroll Office will distribute W-2 forms by January 31, 2018 to individuals who did not opt for the online version of the form.
STUDENTS - To obtain your Form W-2 online:
1) Login to PeopleSoft through TigerHub
2) Select Payroll from the Main Menu drop-down
3) Select the link for Direct Deposit / View
4) Select the link to View W-2 / W-2c / 1042 Form
5) Your 2017 W-2 Form will appear in a PDF version that you may view and print
6) If you are not able to obtain your Form W-2 through Tigerhub, contact the Financial Service Center at email@example.com or 609-258-3080, or visit the Financial Service Center at 7 New South during regular University business hours, 8:45 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday.
FACULTY or STAFF - To obtain your Form W-2 online:
1) Log on to PeopleSoft through HR Self Service
2) Select the link for Self Service
3) Select the link for the Payroll and Compensation page
4) Select the link to view the W2, W2c, or 1042S Form
5) Select the link to view your Year End Form
6) Your 2017 W-2 Form will appear in a PDF version that you may view and print
7) If you are not able to obtain your Form W-2 through PeopleSoft Self Service, contact the Financial Service Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 609-258-3080, or visit the Financial Service Center at 7 New South during regular University business hours, 8:45 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday .
14. I believe my W-2 Form is incorrect. Who do I contact?
You may e-mail your inquiry to email@example.com.
15. I received my Form W-2 with income entered in box 14. Should I enter this amount in Glacier Tax Prep?
NO, you must leave box 14 on the Form W-2 in GLACIER Tax Prep blank.
16. I received a Form 1099 from Princeton University and I don't understand it. Who can I ask about it?
Very few international students and scholars will receive the 1099 form. For 1099 questions, please send your inquiry to Financial Service Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (609) 258-3080.
17. What is the Form 1042-S? What should I do if I didn't receive Form 1042-S from Princeton University?
Form 1042-S is a foreign person’s U.S. income that is subject to tax withholding. You should receive it if you are a nonresident student or scholar who has reportable U.S. income under a tax treaty. The Princeton University Payroll and Accounts Payable Office will distribute Form 1042-S by March 15, 2018. If you expect to receive a Form 1042-S and have not received it by March 15, 2018, please contact NTCR@princeton.edu. Not all students and scholars will receive a Form 1042-S. Only students and scholars who have reportable U.S. income will receive a Form 1042-S.
Getting Help for Non-Resident Alien Tax Issues
18. Will there be tax filing workshops where I can get help on how to use Glacier Tax Prep (GTP)?
The GTP system is simple to use and they no longer offer onsite workshops. Instead they offer a U.S. tax system information video and a tax-filing tutorial on the GTP site that you may access at any time. If you have any questions about general federal tax issues, please select “View Welcome to the U.S. Tax System Informational Video” from the GTP main menu. The video is approximately 30 minutes long and will provide an overview of federal tax issues related to the preparation of your tax forms. In addition, you may also view the “GTP Tutorial Video” for more information about how to complete GTP; this video is approximately 23 minutes and is also available on the GTP main menu. Should you have any questions about federal tax issues or how to use GTP, you may also simply select “Help” located at the top of every GTP screen to submit your questions to the GTP Support Center.
19. I am using Glacier Tax Prep right now and have a question about how to use the software. Where can I get help?
On each GLACIER Tax Prep screen, you can access "Help" located at the top of each screen to submit a question to the GTP Support Center. Or you can email GLACIER Tax Prep directly by clicking the "HELP" button in GLACIER Tax Prep to connect to a live tax professional at the GTP support center. GLACIER Tax Prep will respond to your email within 24 hours. For privacy concerns do not include your social security number or ITIN in your email.
20. Once I fill in the information in Glacier Tax Prep online, am I done?
NO. You must print the tax return forms from GLACIER Tax Prep and then mail them to the IRS at the address provided to you by GLACIER Tax Prep. Be sure to keep copies of all of your forms before you mail them!
21. Where can I find additional tax preparation resources for nonresident aliens?
- United States Internal Revenue Service (click on Individuals)
- VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) -Trained volunteers provide free tax assistance for people with low to moderate income.
- A professional tax preparer or certified public accountant. Be sure to ask if they have expertise in filing Nonresident alien taxes.
- U.S. Tax Treaties Publication 901
Filing Resident Tax Forms
22. What do I do if I am a resident for tax filing purposes?
If you qualify as a RESIDENT alien for tax purposes, you CANNOT use GLACIER Tax Prep but you can file your RESIDENT taxes on your own or with a professional tax preparer. (See FAQ #23) Resident aliens file taxes in the same manner as U.S. citizens using Form 1040 or Form 1040EZ.
23. Where can I find additional tax preparation resources for resident tax filing purposes?
24. Can Princeton University help me prepare my resident tax forms?
NO. U.S. Tax Laws are complicated. Only authorized tax preparation professionals are eligible to advise you on the specifics of your individual tax return. Staff members of the Davis International Center or other University staff are not professional tax preparers and are not authorized to advise you on how to file your tax return forms.
Miscellaneous Tax FAQs
25. Who should I list as my academic program director?
Undergraduate Students and Graduate Students
Academic Program Director Name: Mladenka Tomasevic, Sr. Associate Director for International Students
Program Director Telephone Number: 609-258-5006
Academic Institution Address: Davis International Center, Princeton University,
Princeton, NJ 08544
Academic Program Director Name: Tayla Burns, Assistant Director for International Scholars
Program Director Telephone Number: 609-258-5006
Academic Institution Address: Davis International Center, Princeton University,
Princeton, NJ 08544
26. What is the latest date that Glacier Tax Prep will be available to use?
Although the deadline to file taxes is April 18, 2018, GLACIER Tax Prep will be available for you to use until December 1, 2018. If you file a late return (after April 18, 2018) and you are due a refund, you will not have late filing penalties. If you file a late return and you owe taxes, you will have late filing penalties based on the amount of tax that is due.
27. Can I file my tax forms after the deadline?
Although the deadline to file your U.S. federal and N.J. state income tax returns is April 18, 2018, GLACIER Tax Prep will be available for you to use until December 1, 2018. If you do not owe taxes or if you are due a refund, there is no penalty for filing your tax returns after the deadline. However, if your tax return shows that you do owe taxed and if you need additional time to file your return, you may file an extension by using Form 4868 located on the Internal Revenue Service website (www.irs.gov). Forms 4868 and 1040NR instructions will provide guidance on what to do if you owe taxes or if taxes are refunded.
Form 8843 FAQs
28. Who is required to file Form 8843?
Any individual who is in F, J, M, or Q visa status for the tax year 2017.
29. Do I need to apply for an individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) or Social Security Number (SSN) to file my Form 8843?
No, an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number or Social Security Number is not required to file the Form 8843.
30. Can I use Glacier Tax Prep to complete Form 8843?
YES, you may use GLACIER Tax Prep to complete the Form 8843 for your spouse, dependents, and yourself.
31. Do I need to complete a Form 8843 for my spouse and dependents?
YES, if your spouse and dependents have accompanied you to the United States and are in F or J dependent visa status, you must complete a Form 8843 for them.
32. Where do I mail Form 8843?
Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service Center
Austin, TX 73301-0215
Social Security FAQs
33. If I don't have a Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), how do I file my tax forms?
Social Security Number (SSN) - Social Security Numbers are only available to people who are legally employed in the U.S. If you are currently employed, you must have a social security number. If you do not have one, you should apply for one immediately. If you were employed in the U.S. in 2017, then you must have a Social Security Number before you can file your tax forms. More information about applying for a Social Security Number.
34. How do I apply for my Social Security Number (SSN)?
The Davis International Center website will provide you instructions on how to apply for an SSN.
Individual Taxpayer Identification Number FAQs
35. If I don't have an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), how do I file my tax forms?
Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) - An ITIN is issued to individuals who don't qualify for a Social Security Number because they are not employed but who need a number for tax-filing purposes. If you DO NOT have an individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN), then GLACIER Tax Prep will create a Form W-7 Application for an IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number along with your other tax filing forms.
IMPORTANT: If you are filing Form W-7 (Application for ITIN) with your Tax Filing Forms, DO NOT MAIL YOUR TAX FORMS TO THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE (IRS) YOURSELF. Instead, you MUST submit your tax forms and your W-7 ITIN application in person during an appointment with the NTCR office (Non-Resident Tax Compliance Reporting).
If you need an ITIN, you must schedule an online appointment with NTCR at: NTCR APPOINTMENT
Print and bring all of your Tax Filing forms including the passport copies as listed below to the appointment. NTCR will collect your W-7 ITIN application along with your other tax filing forms listed below and mail them to the IRS for you.
You must bring the originals of the following documents to your NTCR appointment:
- Form 1040NR or 1040NR-EZ (nonresident tax income tax return)
- Form 1042-S (foreign person's U.S. source income subject to withholding)
- Form W-2 (wage and tax statement)
- Form W-7 (application for IRS individual taxpayer identification number)
You must bring copies of the following documents to your NTCR appointment:
- passport biographical page (a certified copy is not required when applying through the NTCR office)
- visa page (Canadians are exempt from the visa requirement)
- I-94 arrival document (white card in passport or electronic I-94 printout from www.cbp.gov/I94)
- I-20 or DS-2019 Form
36. Where can I get the non-employment letter that must accompany the W-7 Application for Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)?
You will obtain this letter in person from the NTCR Office (Non-Resident Tax Compliance Reporting) during the appointment that you schedule with NTCR to complete the ITIN application. To schedule an appointment, go to NTCR APPOINTMENT.
New Jersey State Tax Links and FAQs
37. What is the New Jersey State Tax website address?
The New Jersey State Tax website is: http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/
38. Who has to file a New Jersey State Tax Return? How do I file a NJ State Tax return?
Any person (including internationals) who resided in the State of New Jersey for any portion of the year 2017 and who earned income (wages) of $10,000 (if filing as single) or $20,000 (if filing as married) or more in the State of New Jersey during 2017 must file a New Jersey State Income Tax Return. The State of New Jersey does not tax scholarship or fellowship income.
New Jersey offers several ways to file a State Tax Return, including electronically and on paper. New Jersey's tax website has information to help you file your state taxes. To file your New Jersey State Income Tax Return online, go to www.njwebfile.com. Be sure to read and follow all the instructions on the website. You may NOT file your NJ State Taxes using GLACIER Tax Prep.
39. I lived in New Jersey for only part of the year. Which state state returns do I file, Resident or NonResident of New Jersey?
Any person (including internationals) who resided in New Jersey for any portion of the year (2017) and whose income (wages) from all sources for the entire year is $10,000 (if filing single) or $20,000 (if filing as married) must file a New Jersey State Income Tax Return.
View additional information on filing a part-year NJ State return.
40. Who is a Non-Resident of New Jersey?
A non-resident for New Jersey State tax-filing is any individual (domestic or international) who has NOT resided in the state of New Jersey for any portion of the tax-filing year (2017).
View additional information on filing a part-year return.
41. How do I obtain NJ State Tax forms?
New Jersey gross income tax return forms are available on the NJ State Tax Website.
42. Where do I get NJ State Tax Assistance?
GLACIER Tax Prep does NOT provide assistance for NJ State Tax filing. You may seek New Jersey State Tax- Filing assistance through the following:
- In-Person: Taxation Building, 50 Barrack Street, 1st Floor Lobby, Trenton, NJ 08695
- By Phone: General NJ State Tax Information 609-826-4400 or 1-800-323-4400 (toll free available only in NJ, NY, PA, DE, and MD)
43. How do I check the status of my NJ State Tax Return?
You can get information on the status of your New Jersey income tax refund either online or by phone.
- Online Inquiry: New Jersey Individual Income Tax Online Refund Status Service
- Phone Inquiry: 1-800-323-4400 (toll free available only in NJ, NY PA, DE, and MD) or 609-826-4400
44. How do I correct my New Jersey Tax Return?
Resident NJ State Tax Returns can be corrected by filing paper Form NJ-1040X for the appropriate year. You must file a paper Form NJ-1040X whether your original form was filed electronically or on paper.
45. Where can I obtain a Form TL11A: Tuition, Education and Textbook amounts certificate?
You can request the Form TL11A from the Student Accounts Office through the following:
By Phone: 609-258-6378
By Email: email@example.com
46. How do I prepare and file my state tax return?
After you complete your federal tax return using GLACIER Tax Prep and it appears that you may be required to file a state tax return, GLACIER Tax Prep will provide a link to an online tax preparation software called Sprintax to assist with your state tax filing needs. You will be required to register with Sprintax and create a separate User ID and Password. In addition, Sprintax will charge a fee to prepare your state return. The tax preparation fee must be paid directly to Sprintax.