Taxes - U.S. Tax Information for Nonresident Aliens

All Foreign Nationals living, visiting, working, or studying in the U.S. are responsible for compliance with United States 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-United States 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 permanent resident aliens (green card holders) and who receive financial aid, scholarships, fellowships, awards, or compensation for services performed. For detailed information about filing income tax return forms as a foreign national who resides in the U.S. visit the IRS website for Taxation of Nonresident Aliens.

Federal Tax Treatment

The University of Florida must determine whether a foreign national will be treated as a “resident alien” or a “nonresident alien” for U.S. tax purposes.  The substantial presence test is used to calculate the number of days that a foreign national is present in the U.S. and determine whether the individual is a nonresident alien or resident alien for purposes of calculating U.S. tax withholding.  UF is generally required to withhold taxes from all payments made to nonresident aliens. We are also required by law to report to the IRS all payments made to nonresident aliens, or to a third party on his or her behalf, regardless of whether the payment is subject to U.S. tax.

Tax Treaties

The U.S. maintains income tax treaties with over 50 different countries, and certain taxable payments made by UF to a foreign national may be exempt from U.S. tax based on an income tax treaty entered into 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, you must satisfy the requirements for the exemption set forth in the tax treaty.  In order to be considered for a tax treaty exemption, you must complete all the appropriate Federal forms. For more information, you can download the IRS document, P901 "US Tax Treaties".

Taxable and Nontaxable Items for Students

Payments to students for the following items are nontaxable:

  • Tuition
  • Book Allowance
  • Required Registration Fees
  • Mandatory Health Insurance

Taxable items include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Room and Board
  • Fellowship Stipend (which does not require a service to be performed)
  • Living Allowance
  • Cash Award
  • Travel Payment/Reimbursement
  • Compensation (including a fellowship stipend that does require a service to be performed)


UFIC provides international students and scholars with a free international tax return preparation program known as GTP. It is made available each spring in the beginning of February through a secure portal.

You are not elegible to file as a resident unless you have been in the US at least 5 years.