Every spring between January 1 and April 15, residents of the United States prepare and submit annual tax reports for the preceding calendar year. If U.S. income is received a tax return must be filed with the IRS by April 15. International students are required to submit the IRS form 8843, even if they have not received any income in the U.S. This form documents non-resident status.
IMPORTANT: Keep all of your receipts, copies of your tax forms and the Glacier Compliance report in one place (a large envelope). You should keep these records as long as you may be employed in the U.S. during your professional career. In the future, if you apply for different visa categories, the immigration service has the right to ask for copies of all previous visa and tax documents. UAF does not keep these records beyond three years.
Resident or Non-Resident for U.S. Tax Purposes
If you are receiving any kind of payment or award from UAF, you will be asked to complete information through the Glacier Nonresident Alien Tax Compliance System, commonly referred to as Glacier Immigration at UAF. The Glacier report will advise if you are a resident or nonresident for tax purposes. This is important so that UAF makes all payments in compliance with U.S. tax regulations. You will receive an email with the Glacier Online Tax Compliance log-in information from your hiring department payroll/personnel staff person or Accounts Payable if you are required to provide forms and documents.
Simplified explanation for determining tax residency:
Special consideration for F and J statuses: Generally, students in F-1 and J-1 status will be non-residents for their first 5 years of presence in the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status. J-1 Scholars and Student Interns will be non-residents for the first 2 years they are in the U.S. in J-1 status. The years are any part of a calendar year. For example a person arriving in F-1 status on December 31, uses one full year by arriving on that day. Once the total number of years has been reached, generally if the person is in the U.S. for at least 183 days, they will be considered a U.S. resident for tax purposes. The Substantial Presence Test (SPT) must be performed. See the calculation explanation below.
For all other immigration statuses: the possibility of gaining resident status begins the first year you are present in the U.S. The SPT is calculated on a rolling three years. The person must be present in the current year under consideration for at least 31 days, add the total number of days present in the U.S. in the previous year divided by 3; add the total number of days present in the U.S. in the second previous year divided by 6. If the total is less that 183 days, the person is a nonresident for U.S. tax purposes. If the total is equal to or greater than 183, the person is a resident for U.S. tax purposes. For UAF employees and others receiving payments from UAF, this will be calculated through Glacier. The residency test is referred to as the Substantial Presence Test (SPT). If you are not receiving any form of payment from UAF, you will not be in the Glacier system and will need to have the test performed manually. Again, this is a very simplified explanation. The difference between a resident and non-resident is that different tax forms are required for those required to file a U.S. tax return and residents are subject to the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act. If you have questions, contact IPI.
If you are employed by UAF in any kind of position, but generally as a Research or Teaching Assistant or student employee, you will be required to complete and submit payroll withholding forms through your departmental Payroll/Personnel Assistant to UAF Human Resources. The forms and related documentation allow UAF to appropriately process any U.S. tax withholding required.
The following forms will be prepared during the Glacier Immigration process. This will enable UAF to process your pay with the proper tax withholding assessed. Forms will need to be submitted to your department assistant responsible for payroll. This person is usually referred to as the Payroll/Personnel Assistant (PPA).
IRS Form: W-4