The University of Iowa

ALERT!  The on-site Tax Workshops in the schedule below have been suspended due to covid 19 restrictions. The Current TAXSLAYER online resources described in the paragraph directly below will end for new applicants on June 15th. Those who have reqested and completed the taxslayer resource will still be able to request a zoom review with a volunteer up until june 26th (however we strongly suggest you request the zoom as soon before that as possibe). first time requests for tax filing assistance after june 15th will receive a link and code for Sprintax non-resident software which will not require a zoom review nor any assistance by fsa volunteers. sprintax can be done completely without the assistance of workshop volunteers a filers must mail in to the government the forms produced by sprintax before the filing deadline in July.

however, the FSA Workshop Coordinators have developed an online fully-remote format where students receive directions to fill out most of the software beforehand and then sign up for a Zoom Meeting to meet virtually with a Volunteer before proceeding to complete the e-file section. Please email to request The UpdateD Directions for the non-resident software used this year. This program and the Software Directions given in response to emails to are designed for non-residents only. The FSA Workshops and associated TaxSlayer and Zoom resources will end in mid-June.  

the federal filing deadline has been moved from April 15 to july 15, 2020 so please be patient as we develop the remote (directions & zoom-meeting) format and the partial-remoTe format (directions & meeting).
The Iowa state tax deadline has also been extended to July 31. .  Please email with questions.  

Resident or Non-Resident for Federal Tax Filing Purposes:

Generally, most international students & scholars who are on F or J visas are considered non-residents for tax purposes. International undergraduate students on J1 & F1 visas are automatically considered non-resident for their first 5 calendar years in the US, whilst Scholars/Researchers on J visas are automatically considered non-residents for 2 out of the last 6 calendar years in the US. If you are an f-1 student who arrived for the first time in f-1 status prior to January 1st 2015 then you are most likely a "resident for tax filing purposes". If you are a paid J-1 scholar who entered the US for the first time in that status prior to January 1st 2018, you are most likely also a "resident for tax filing purposes” and similarly should seek out Resident filing resources. Non-Resident tax filers can be served by our program and would complete form 1040NR-EZ as their main filing form while Residents for tax filing purposes complete form 1040 as is used by US citizens and permanent residents.  If you believe that you may have inadvertently filed as a Resident this tax season or in past tax seasons, or have receive a Stimulus check for which you are not sure you are eligible, please see question 61 at the bottom of the IRS Link below since stimulus repayment checks will need to be sent to a separate IRS destination as soon as possible and this would be apart from any amended return application sent to the government.  You may contact to request further resources to help determine your tax residency status.


Spring 2020 Non-Resident Tax Workshops (Tax Year 2019) ---- TO BE RESCHEDULED                                                                                    


Things to Bring to the Workshops

Information from the items below is necessary to complete the tax software so please arrange to have access to this information:

  • Passport and Visa
  • Your "Travel History" from the digital record from the I-94 Government Website. To complete the tax software you must calculate the number of days you were present in the US during 2019 and prior years and the dates from this site, as well as the ink entry stamps in your passport, can be used with any Online Date Calculator to establish this. 
  • Form I-20 (if an F status individual) or Form DS-2019 (if a J status individual)
  • Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). If you have no SSN or  ITIN yet, email prior to visiting the workshop. 
  • All Forms W-2 and 1042-S that were mailed to you or available on the UI Self Service site. These forms are not available until the end of January every year. Please see the paragraphs directly below this bullet point list for more information on the W-2 and 1042-S. 
  • Your bank routing number and checking account number for direct deposit of your refund. These numbers are located on your personal checks from your bank.
  • A copy of your 2019 (TY2018) federal income tax form (Form 1040NR or 1040NR-EZ) if you filed a federal income tax return last year. The most important information needed from these documents is the amount of the Adjusted Gross Income(AGI) from the past 1040NR-EZ (line 10) or 1040NR (line 35). If you did not retain any copies of your last year's 1040NR(-EZ) or follow the directions to download your past 1040NR-EZ from Windstar prior to December 31st 2019 as directed in an email to all past Windstar users this past December, then the only option is to request an AGI transcript directly from the government. The online option may not work for many students so they must request a paper AGI transcript to be sent to them using their prior year's mailing address (which is the only way to verify your identity, and is problematic if you have a new address).
  • Address Information (Current U.S. Address if you are still living in the U.S. and Permanent Foreign Address)
  • Academic Institution or Host Sponsor Information
  • Scholarship or fellowship grant letters (if you received one from your academic institution or host sponsor)


ISSS sponsors Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) workshops for UI international students and scholars. Workshop volunteers are certified by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to assist international students and scholars in preparing non-resident tax returns. Volunteers can also answer questions about how to fill out and send Iowa tax returns and the Federal Form 8843.

UI Human Resources Payroll Office collects and maintains data to determine nonresident alien vs. resident alien status for tax purposes. W-2 forms are made available in mid-to-late January through MyUI or through the UI Employee Self-Service website. Students can view their W-2 and other tax information by going to the “Student Records” tab in MyUI and in the “Finances and Billing” section click on the “HRIS Self Service and Earnings Statements” link. That link will bring you to the Employee Self Service site and under the “Payroll” section you can select “View Year End Tax Information” to get a PDF of your W-2.

International students or scholars may or may not have a 1042-S form depending on different circumstances.  For details, please go to the Employee Self Service , and in the “Time and Pay” select the “Year End Tax Information” link in the "Taxes" section to find the then “1042-S Foreign Person’s U.S. Source Income Subject to Withholding.”          

 If you have any inquiry about your form W-2, 1042-S, tax treaties, payroll and withholding of taxes, please call or visit the UI Payroll Office or email

VITA workshops are open during March and April of every year to current nonimmigrant international students and scholars and those who were present at the University of Iowa during the 2019 tax year. If you no longer reside in the U.S. but were present for any length of time in 2019, you are required to fill out tax forms. To learn about how to access this software, go to our Tax Software Website.

For questions about VITA workshops only, please send an email to


    A Warning About Other Tax Services

    If you are classified as a non-resident, you may NOT file a resident return. Residency, for tax purposes, is determined by the “Substantial Presence Test.”

    Only those who are determined to have "resident" filing status may complete a resident return. Most students and scholars will be classified as non-residents for tax purposes. Some tax assistance sites have erroneously filed resident returns for non-residents, who were promised larger refunds by this method. This could result in a charge of tax fraud against you, which may jeopardize your legal status. The fact that your preparer erred will not excuse you from liability. The UI Payroll Office is the resource for determining your residency and tax liability so please consult the non-resident portion of their tax information page and contact with any questions. During tax season volunteers at the workshops can also help clarify your filing status and they can also be contacted at ISSS urges you to protect yourself in this matter or you may have to file an amended return and pay back any fraudulently refunded monies.