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Form 8843 -- Statement for Exempt Individuals and Individuals with a Medical Condition

Form 8843

Purpose of Form 8843:

  • Form 8843 is an information statement that is filed annually by nonresident aliens (NRAs) in F, J, M or Q visa status who have had a presence in the US
  • The form demonstrates that an individual is eligible for NRA status and is, therefore, exempt from taxation on income earned outside of the US

Who is required to file Form 8843:

  • Non-resident alien (NRA) students and scholars in the US on F, J, M or Q status who were present in the United States in 2016 (even if presence was for only 1 day)
  • F and J students file in their first five calendar years in the United States (i.e. until the visa holder becomes a resident alien for tax purposes)
  • J nonstudents file in two of the current seven years in F, J, M, or Q status
  • Dependents of those in F, J, M or Q visa status must also file

Rules for Submitting Form 8843:

  • It is the NRA individual's responsibility to complete and submit this form
  • Filing is mandated by US law in Treasury Regulation 301.7701(b)-8(a)(2) and (b)(2)
  • The form should be attached to the back of the Form 1040NR or 1040NR-EZ tax return and mailed by 18 April
  • If an NRA has no tax return filing obligation, it should be signed and submitted by itself to the IRS by 15 June
  • There is no monetary penalty for failure to file Form 8843. However, in order to be compliant with federal regulations one must file Form 8843 if required to do so.  (Remember, being compliant can affect the issuing of future US visas or granting of legal permanent resident status.)
  • The form must be submitted even if the visa holder does not have an SSN or ITIN
  • The form must be completed and submitted to the IRS by all NRAs whether income was earned or not.  (US income can be wages, qualified or non-qualified scholarship, prizes, or taxable reimbursements, etc.)
  • The form must be submitted whether or not an NRA had a tax treaty benefit
  • RAs (resident aliens for tax purposes) do not submit an 8843

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