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meimei0602
Level 1

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

I am an F1 student and came to the US since 2015, and I have a W2 during 2019 under OPT. I have a question that can I choose to be treated as resident alien and fill form 1040 instead of 1040-nr-ez for 2019 under the first-year choice?

6 Replies
mesquitebean
Level 15

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

I'm going to ask someone familiar with international filing situations to assist you.

 

@pkAre you able to assist here when you are next in the forum?   Thanks!

pk
Level 13
Level 13

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

@meimei0602 , per your post  you are exempt  ( from counting days present ) till the end of 2019.  I am assuming here that your  F-1 is still valid and you are on OPT and thus still a Non-Resident Alien.

The first year choice requires amongst other things  that you will be a resident alien during next year and you cannot make the first year choice till you meet that  Substantial Presence Test.  Your  situation  makes it  kind of questionable  because  (a) there is no certainty that your OPT will last till  July of  2020,  and (b) that your  visa will not expire  ( assuming that F-1 was for five years) .   Can you still do it -- yes; but  why would you want to do it -- just to file a 1040  instead of 1040-NR  or what. Perhaps  you need to answer that and then we can work on how to achieve that.

Note that  W-2 by itself does not change your  status -- it just allows  taxes to be withheld.

Which country are you from ?  ( not that some countries have  special assertions  for students with local income while on training and education ).

meimei0602
Level 1

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

I'm from Viet Nam, and I know that my OPT job will last until July, and I will go back to school in August. One of the tax preparers accidentally fill form 1040 for me, and I saw I got more money than the 1040-nr-ez. That is the reason why I ask about that, and I know that this year's tax deadline will be in July. Therefore, Can I wait until that to file the tax? Thank you so much!

meimei0602
Level 1

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

@pk Thank you in advance for helping me!

meimei0602
Level 1

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

@pk  Can you help me? Thanks

pk
Level 13
Level 13

Can F1 student choose to be treated as resident alien?

@meimei0602 , understand your reason for wanting to file as a resident for tax purposes.  While I have said earlier  about making first year choice is true, on re-reading the  regulations about "exempt status"  the word  is "is exempt"  and to me that means that the exempt person does not have a choice -- the choice to declare the status lies with the taxing authority.  Also the first year choice is  limited to persons whom are NRA at the moment and counting days -- there is no mention of "exempt".  All of these lead me to opine that  you would not be successful in asserting that you want to be treated as a resident for tax purposes ( under your current status).

 

I am sorry to have to take this  stand.

Good Luck

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