Foreign National Students Tax Information

I have heard about the Glacier software at Carleton. What is it?
What is the benefit of completing the questions in Glacier?
What happens if I do not complete Glacier?
How do I access the Glacier software system?
How often do I have to access Glacier?
Do I need a Social Security Number?
What do I do with the Social Security Number once I receive it?
What is a Tax Treaty?
I have heard of GLACIER Tax Prep (GTP), what is it?
What do I do if I am a Permanent Resident Alien (have a green card)? 
When are Forms W-2 and 1042S available and how do I receive them?
As a Nonresident Alien, am I required to file a tax return with the federal government each year?
Where can I find additional information about my tax responsibilities?
I am a nonresident alien who received a prize or award.  Why was federal tax withheld from it?
I am an F-1 or J-1 student and I had no U.S. earned income or scholarships for the year. Do I need to file?
I only arrived in the U.S. in December and I did not work. Do I still have to file Form 8843?
I only worked for a short time during the year and I did not earn very much. Do I still have to file?
I am a nonresident alien for tax purposes. Can I claim the HOPE or the Tuition Tax Credit or the Earned income credit?
I just received my W-2 form for the wages I earned last year. Can I file my taxes now?
Should I keep copies of my tax returns and other tax forms?
What is the deadline for filing my tax return?
I am unable to file by the deadline, what do I do?
I am leaving the country before I can file my taxes. What should I do?
Does Carleton provide tax preparation services?

I have heard about the Glacier software at Carleton. What is it?
Glacier is a software product used by Carleton College to determine the correct amount of federal tax to be withheld from payments made to foreign national students. The term ‘payments’ includes student work, scholarships, fellowships and other payments made to you by Carleton College

What is the benefit of completing the questions in Glacier?
Since you may be eligible for a tax treaty benefit between your home country and the US, you will want to complete Glacier. Many tax treaties allow you to be exempt from federal tax on payments from Carleton.

  • Note: The existence of a tax treaty between the US and your home country does not guarantee that you are eligible to receive this benefit. You must qualify for the tax treaty before you can receive any benefit of a tax treaty.  
  • Note: A tax treaty between the US and your country of residence only applies to federal tax; it does not apply to state tax. If you qualify for the benefit of a tax treaty with your home country, there will still be other tax deductions from your paycheck. 

What happens if I do not complete Glacier?
Without the completion of Glacier and the submission of the Glacier forms to the Carleton College Business Office the maximum amount of federal tax must be withheld from your payment. If you are employed by Carleton and do not complete Glacier, the tax to be withheld from your paycheck is at 30%. If you are receiving a scholarship or a fellowship, the rate is 14%.

How do I access the Glacier software system?
Access to Glacier is controlled by passwords issued by the Business Office. You will receive a password and the website address of Glacier via e-mail. The e-mail will come from the following online address: support@online-tax.net. It is important to remember your password, user ID and the Glacier website address as you may be using Glacier several times during your stay at Carleton College. For additional questions, contact Shari Mayer at smayer@carleton.edu 

How often do I have to access Glacier?
For most students, in your first year, you will need to access Glacier at least twice. First, to create your record in Glacier and to prepare all the forms necessary for your tax file. The second time will be to renew your tax treaty, if applicable. The forms produced by Glacier are only valid for one year and, therefore; need to be completed, printed and signed by you each year and sent to the Business Office. 

You may also access Glacier at any time to update your information. Examples of this would be if your Visa status changes, if your address in the US changes, or if your anticipated departure date changes. It is a good idea to review all the information in Glacier when you are doing your tax treaty renewal each year. 

You will also need to access Glacier when you leave Carleton College to indicate that you are receiving “no payments” and to update your email address and submit the record. This will stop e-mails reminders to you when it is no longer necessary to have a Glacier record. 

Do I need a Social Security Number?
If you are employed at Carleton College, you will need a Social Security Number (SSN). If you do not have an SSN you will need to apply for one from the Social Security Administration. This is done by completing Form SS-5 Application for Social Security Number and applying in person at the local Social Security Office.  If you are a first year international student, the Office of Intercultural & International Life (OIIL) provides one trip during fall term to the Social Security Office at no cost to you.  Contact Brisa Zubia for additional information on the date and time.  Apart from this scheduled trip, it is your responsibility to apply for a Social Security Card on your own.  OIIL can assist with necessary paperwork and address additional questions you may have.   You will receive a receipt from the Social Security Administration at the time of application. Approximately two to eight weeks later, you will receive the actual Social Security Number. If you are not employed at Carleton College (for instance only receiving a scholarship or fellowship with no work or service requirement you are not eligible for a social security number and you will need to apply for an ITIN - Individual Identification Number.  See the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website for additional information https://www.irs.gov/individuals/individual-taxpayer-identification-number-itin?_ga=1.207236625.360746920.1392994528

What do I do with the Social Security Number once I receive it?
You will need to update Glacier with your Social Security Number, then print and sign all the forms Glacier prepares for you, and submit them to the Business Office 

What is a Tax Treaty?
A Tax Treaty is an agreement between the United States and other countries. Currently there are approximately 68 different tax treaties in effect. Some of the tax treaties allow a student/researcher/scholar to receive income in the US without it being taxed by the federal government. There are several limitations on this benefit such as the amount of money received, the time you receive the money, your length of stay in the US, your visa status, the status in which you entered the US and others. To determine if you are eligible for a tax treaty you will need to complete the information in the Glacier system, print, sign, and submit the forms to the Business Office.

I have heard of GLACIER Tax Prep (GTP), what is it?
GTP is a tax return preparation system. Carleton College offers this software free to Carleton foreign nationals. Each year you will be required to file a federal income tax return. The GTP system only prepares Form 1040NR for foreign nationals. It does not prepare Form 1040, used by permanent foreign nationals. It is also used only by Carleton international students. You can access GTP through Glacier using your Glacier password and user id. GTP is typically available in March and is used to prepare tax returns for the previous calendar year.  

What do I do if I am a Permanent Resident Alien (have a green card)?
If you have a green card and receive an e-mail about Glacier, please notify the Carleton College Business Office and provide a copy of your green card. At that time, they will inactivate your Glacier record because Glacier is only for nonresident aliens. 

When are Forms W-2 and 1042S available and how do I receive them?
Forms W-2 and 1042S are forms used to report to you and the IRS how much money you received in a year and if any tax was withheld from those payments. The W-2 is delivered via the HUB by the Carleton Payroll Office and the Form 1042-S is delivered to you through the Glacier. The Form W-2 and the Form 1042-S are made available by January 31 of each year. It is necessary to have these forms to complete your federal tax return. E-mail notifications are sent to you when the forms become available for you to view and print.  

As a Nonresident Alien, am I required to file a tax return with the federal government each year?
Yes, if you have compensation, you are required to complete a form and file it with the Internal Revenue Service each year. The deadline to file these forms is April 15th each calendar year.   

Where can I find additional information about my tax responsibilities?
You may view information about foreign taxpayers at the IRS web page at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers or read Publication 519 via the Forms & Pubs menu.   

I am a nonresident alien who received a prize or award.  Why was federal tax withheld from it?
There is no federal tax exclusion under any tax treaty on prizes and awards given to nonresident aliens. Scholarships and Fellowships are often referred to as an award but there is a distinction between prizes/awards and scholarships/fellowships.

I am an F-1 or J-1 student and I had no U.S. earned income or scholarships for the year. Do I need to file?
Yes, all persons present in the U.S. under a student/student teacher visa must file IRS Form 8843 (Statement for Exempt Individuals). Dependents in F-2 and J-2 status must also file Form 8843. 

I only arrived in the U.S. in December and I did not work. Do I still have to file Form 8843?
Yes. If you were in the U.S. even one day, you must file Form 8843. 

I only worked for a short time during the year and I did not earn very much. Do I still have to file?
Yes. If you had any U.S. source earned income; you will need to file IRS Form1040NR-EZ of Form 1040NR and Form 8843.  

I am a nonresident alien for tax purposes. Can I claim the HOPE or the Tuition Tax Credit or the Earned income credit?
No. Nonresident aliens cannot claim the HOPE Scholarship Tax Credit or the American Opportunity Credit.   

I just received my W-2 form for the wages I earned last year. Can I file my taxes now?
Not necessarily. If you are from a country, which has a tax treaty with the U.S., or you received a U.S. based scholarship or fellowship, you may also receive Form1042-S from the Business Office.  This form is generally made available to you by January 31st and you will need both forms before you can file. 

Should I keep copies of my tax returns and other tax forms?
Yes. Always keep copies of you tax return, W-2, 1042-S, 1099 bank interest statements and any other pertinent forms as proof that you have filed. The IRS can audit individual returns for up to 3 years following the filing deadline.  

What is the deadline for filing my tax return?
If you are filing Form 1040NE-EZ or Form 1040NR, the deadline to file is April 15th. If you are filing Form 8843 only, the deadline to file is June 15th

I am unable to file by the deadline, what do I do?
File Form 4868 - Extension of Time to File, which extends the deadline to file until August 15th. If you owe any taxes though, you must still mail your estimated tax payment by April 15th or you will be assessed penalty and interest as of April 15th on the amount owed.

I am leaving the country before I can file my taxes. What should I do?
Confirm that the Payroll and Business Offices has your foreign address so that your Form W-2 and/or Form 1042-S can be mailed to you, if you requested this option.  IRS forms and instructions are available on the IRS website, which you can download and file your U.S. taxes from abroad.  

Does Carleton provide tax preparation services?
The information provided in this document is general information designed to assist students with questions about their tax status, tax return filing and the use of the GLACIER and GLACIER Tax Prep (GTP) systems.  Staff at Carleton College are not permitted to provide personal tax advice regarding tax forms and filing tax returns.  If you would like specific tax advice, please contact a certified tax preparer (CPA)

For further Foreign National Student Tax questions please contact Shari Mayer at x.4022 or smayer@carleton.edu.