International Students

Social Security and Taxes

Social Security Numbers for F-1 Students

Students who have secured employment while in the United States are required to obtain a Social Security Number (SSN). This applies to on-campus employment as well as off-campus employment (CPT & OPT). Students cannot apply for a Social Security Number until an employment offer is received. General information on International Students and Social Security Numbers.

Social Security Procedure for On-Campus Employment

F-1 students seeking a Social Security Number for on-campus employment must present the following documents to the Social Security Administration Office:
Note: SSA will not process your application more than 30 days in advance of the scheduled employment start date.

Social Security Procedure for Off-Campus Employment (OPT & CPT)

F-1 students seeking a Social Security Number for off-campus employment must present the following documents to the Social Security Administration Office:

For F-1 Curricular Practical Training (CPT):
Note: SSA will not process your application more than 30 days in advance of the CPT employment start date.

For F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT):
Note: SSA will not process your application until the employment start date on the OPT EAD card has been reached.

Visiting the Social Security Administration Office

The SSA office closest to the Neumann University campus is:
807 Crosby Street
Chester, PA 19013
Telephone: (800)-772-1213
Office Hours: 9am – 3pm, Mon, Tues, Thurs, Friday; 9 - noon Wednesday

Note: When at the SSA Office, ask for a receipt that will verify your submission.

After the application has been submitted to SSA, students should receive their Social Security Number by mail within 2-6 weeks. F-1 students may not start work on-campus until their Social Security number is received. Please provide your new Social Security Number to the Neumann DSO once it is received.

Tax Reporting for F-1 Students (For Tax Year 2018)

All F-1 students must file tax returns each spring, even if no money was earned in the United States. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the government agency responsible for federal tax reporting.

If you did not earn any U.S. income during 2018 other than bank or credit union interest, then you need only file Form 8843, Statement for Exempt Individuals and Individuals with a Medical Condition. Form 8843 is not an income tax return. Form 8843 is merely an informational statement required by the U.S. government for certain nonresident immigrants.

If you were employed in the U.S. at any time during 2018, you must file a federal income tax form (1040NR or 1040NR EZ) and a PA state form (Form PA-40) in addition to Form 8843. You can expect to receive form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, from your employer sometime before the end of January. Your bank, credit union or other financial institution will mail you a yearly Statement of Interest as well. Once you receive your W-2 and Statement of Interest, you are ready to complete these forms.

The ISE Office will email reminders and tax form links each February to international students on campus. Students who filed tax returns last year may also receive both U.S. federal and state income tax forms for the new tax year in the mail in January.

Forms are available on-line, but cannot be submitted electronically. Please open the relevant pdfs, type your responses in the colored boxes, print, sign and mail by April 15, 2019. Since the International Studies Education staff is not qualified to give individual tax advice, students with complicated tax situations may wish to consult with a tax preparation service, professional tax accountant, or tax attorney who is knowledgeable about nonresident tax law.

Federal Income Tax Forms and Assistance:

Tax form 8843

Tax form 1040 NR EZ

Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

Federal Income Tax Forms and Publications

Pennsylvania State Tax Forms and Assistance:

Pennsylvania State Tax Department

Form PA-40

Tax Forms From Other States:

Federation of Tax Administrators

Other Useful Links:

Income Tax Treaties: Full texts of tax treaties between the US and foreign countries and the related US Treasury Department Technical Explanation on the IRS website. A commercial site offering information and for-fee tax return preparation for international students and scholars.

Forms 1040NR EZ, 1040NR and 8843 cannot be filed electronically at this time, nor can they be faxed. They must be completed on paper and mailed to the Internal Revenue Service. The deadline for filing your income tax returns is April 15.

Note: If you are a foreign student on an F- 1 visa, and if you are also a nonresident alien for federal income tax purposes, you are exempt from Social Security (FICA) taxes (including Medicare tax) on income earned in the United States. Make sure that your employer knows this. If boxes 2, 4 or 6 of your W-2 form contain dollar amounts, you are most likely due a tax refund.