ISP 2016 Tax Season: FEBRUARY 15 - APRIL 8

Tax Orientation is Weds. Feb, 24 4:45-5:45 pm in JBD (CC basement). Especially if you're a first year, you may want to wait until after this session to start your taxes.

You MUST schedule an appointment with a Tax Tutor to file your taxes with ISP. See instructions below.

All international students must file taxes by law, even if you did not work or receive income. To file taxes with ISP you need to

1. Determine your residency status
2. Complete Glacier Tax Prep (GTP) BEFORE you come to ISP
3. Schedule appointment with ISP Tax Tutor  - Complete Intake Form BEFORE appointment
4. File taxes for other states as needed
5. Check whether you need/are eligible for Social Security and Medicare
6. Check whether you are eligible for a Rental refund

1. Determining Residency Status

ISP staff is only trained to assist Non-Resident Aliens for Tax Purposes, which include:

  • F-1 students whose presence in the U.S. does not exceed 5 calendar years (this often applies to current students and alumni one year after graduation, unless they were in the U.S. before Macalester).
  • J-1 students/scholars whose presence in the U.S. does not exceed 2 calendar years.

If your presence in the US exceeds the time frames mentioned above and you are a Resident Alien for Tax Purposes, see green box below. If you are unsure of your residency status, check with ISP.

2. Completing Glacier Tax Prep (GTP) Before ISP Appointment

What is Glacier Tax Prep (GTP)?

  • GTP is an online tax preparation site to prepare your Federal Taxes. It does not file your taxes for you, it only prepares the documents to be sent by mail
  • You should have registered for Glacier in the fall of your first year and created your username/login. If you don't remember it, click 'forgot login'.
  • Use a password easy to remember or write it down. 

What forms do I need to complete Glacier Tax Prep/Taxes?

  • W-2: If you worked in 2015 (any paid job, in any state), you will have received a W-2 from your employer(s). If you worked at Macalester and chose to receive your W-2 electronically, log into 1600Grand>Employment tab>Tax Forms>W-2; print 1 copy. Otherwise bring the one that you got in your SPO. Contact your employer if you have not received your W-2.
  • 1042-S: If you have room and board scholarships, this form will be available on the first page of Glacier Tax Prep under a red button named "Print/View my 1042-S." If this button is gray/you do not see this button, you do not have one. If you worked at Macalester and confirmed that your country has a tax treaty with the U.S., you may receive a 1042-S instead of a W-2.
  • Tax Grant Letter: If you have financial aid at Macalester, this was sent to your SPO or home address that Mac has on file. Bring this with you when you come to ISP.
  • Travel Documents: Passport, I-20.
  • Social Security Number (if you have one, i.e., if you've ever worked for money in the US)
  • Any other tax forms you may have received (e.g., 1099...)

How do I complete Glacier Tax Prep?

1. Log into Glacier here .
2. Click the green button "Complete my US Tax return using GTP."
3. Click through and complete all personal information.
4. For country of tax residence, the majority of you will put the country of your passport. If in doubt, talk to ISP.
5. On the page "Information about your visits to the US" refer to your passport stamps or I-20 to get arrival dates. Yes, you must put accurate dates.
6. On the page "Income Statements" copy all your tax forms into the appropriate fields, exactly how they appear on paper. Most of you will have only a W-2 and a 1042-S to enter, but if you had paid internships in Minnesota or out of state, you will have one W-2 per workplace. If your employer considered you an independent contractor, then you may receive a 1099-MISC.
7. On the next page, when asked about your tax treaty (if applicable, depends on country), click "I want to claim the maximum amount of exemption."
8. On the page "Institution that Sponsored your Immigration Status," put Aaron Colhapp tel: 651-696-6078
9. On the page "Additional Information"

  • Did you ever make estimated tax payments? No. 
  • Have you ever filed a previous tax return? If you didn't file US taxes last year, no. If you did, yes. Almost all of you completed the 1040NR-EZ.
  • On your 2015 Form 1040NR-EZ, were you eligible for a tax refund that you instructed the IRS to keep the money and apply to any refund that you may have in 2016? No. 
  • Did you claim the tax treaty benefit? If you haven't filed taxes before, no. If you did, hopefully you put yes last time, so yes. 
  • Do you have any dependents? No, unless you have children or a spouse. 

10. Click the green button that says "print forms." Print 3 DOUBLE SIDED copies BUT NOT THE COVER SHEET. You cannot print in Kagin or ISP.

Congratulations! You have finished your Federal Forms through Glacier Tax Prep.

3. Scheduling an appointment with ISP Tax Tutor

Starting Monday February 15, 2016, you may schedule an appointment and bring the following to ISP to complete your tax returns:

  • 3 DOUBLE sided copies of your Glacier forms (do not print the cover page or printing double sided will mess things up! Start printing from page 2, not page 1).
  • Any applicable tax forms (W-2, 1042-S, 1099, etc)
  • I-20
  • Passport
  • Social security number

See ISP's available tax appointments here [LINK SOON]

  1. Click on an available slot. If you worked in another state during 2015, book two consecutive slots with the same tax tutor (and look in the next tab for more details). 
  2. Replace "(add your name here)" with your first and last name. Do not delete the name of the Tax Tutor. For example, it should read "Alexa with Kofi Annan."
  3. In the Description field, write the state(s) where you earned income in 2015. If you did not work anywhere in 2015, write "did not work."
  4. Click Save.
  5. BEFORE YOUR APPOINTMENT complete and bring the intake form. Either complete it online and print it out, pick one up from ISP, or come 15 minutes early to your appointment and fill it out here. If you are unsure about any of the questions, you can ask your Tax Tutor at the start of your appointment.
  6. Show up to your appointment on time at ISP! If you are late, you will have to reschedule. If you are unable to finish your taxes in 30 minutes, you will have to schedule another appointment.

4. Filing Taxes for Other States

If you worked in any other state during 2015 (e.g. Explo in Massachusetts) you may need to file taxes for that state as well. In that case, book two consecutive slots (for an hour total) with the ISP Tax Tutor designated for that state.

  • California: (coming soon)
  • New York: (coming soon)
  • Massachusetts: (coming soon)

5. Social Security and Medicare Refunds

Non-residents for tax purposes, or F-1 students who have been in the US for less than 5 calendar years are not subject to Social Security and Medicare tax withholding. If your employer accidentally withheld Social Security and Medicare from your pay, you are entitled to a refund claim. Always check your W-2 for that! Sometimes even Macalester does it by mistake. You should FIRST contact the employer for reimbursement. If you are unable to get a refund from the employer, file a claim for refund with the following completed forms and supporting documents:

1. Complete forms Form 843 and Form 8316 at least six weeks after filing your 1040NR-EZ or 1040NR. 

Important: In form 843, line 6 (labelled "Original Return") is a common place for error. Note that the appropriate box to be checked in that item is 941 and NOT 1040. Similarly, the "Type of tax" in line 3 should be "Employment" and not "Income."

2. Attach photocopies of:

  • W-2
  • Form 1040NR-EZ or 1040NR for the tax year in question
  • Form I-94 front and back
  • Form I-20 pages 1-2 (1-3 for the old I-20), with page 2 (3 for the old I-20) showing the name and address of the employer that withheld social security and Medicare from you
  • Valid visa
  • If relevant, the Employment Authorization Document of your OPT or Severe Economic Hardship work permit

3. Mail to Internal Revenue Service Center. Austin, TX 73301

6. Rental Refund

If you paid rent in 2015 and depending on your income and many other variables, you may be eligible for a Renter's Property Tax Refund. This is very rare for Macalester students since they don't usually meet the income requirements (since scholarship, loans or money from families may be considered income). See more information here

Are you studying abroad? Email us and we'll help you file your taxes through Skype and email. See above to schedule an appointment (keeping in mind the time difference).

Are you a Resident Alien for Tax Purposes? Unfortunately ISP can't help you but you can easily file your federal and possibly state taxes online. Or, you can also use an online site for you federal taxes, and file your own Minnesota taxes by reading these instructions.  You can find Minnesota income forms here.  Best of luck!

Are you alumni? If you are still a Non-Resident Alien for Tax Purposes and in town, we can help you if you come to ISP. Contact us about scheduling an appointment.