By Megon VenterFri. 02 Feb. 20243min Read

How to Fill Out a 1040-NR Tax Form

In this guide, we'll walk you step by step through how to fill out the 1040-NR tax form, ensuring accuracy and compliance.
How to Fill Out a 1040-NR Tax Form

Filing taxes can be daunting, especially for non-resident aliens with income from U.S. sources. The 1040-NR tax form is specifically designed for individuals who are not U.S. citizens or residents but have earned income within the United States.

Megon Venter
Blog Author - B2B SaaS Content Writer
Megon is a B2B SaaS Content Writer with 7 years of experience in content strategy and execution. Her expertise lies in the creation of document management tutorials and product comparisons.

What is a 1040-NR Tax Form?

The Form 1040-NR, also known as the U.S. Nonresident Alien Income Tax Return, is a tax form used by nonresident aliens to report their income, deductions, credits, and tax payments to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the United States. Here's a closer look at some key aspects of the 1040-NR form:


  • Tax Resident Status: Nonresident aliens use the 1040-NR form if they are not U.S. citizens or resident aliens and have income from U.S. sources. Resident aliens, on the other hand, typically use Form 1040 to file their taxes.

  • Qualified Dividends and Tax Liability: Nonresident aliens may have income from U.S. sources, such as dividends, interest, rents, royalties, and certain types of compensation for personal services. These individuals must calculate their tax liability based on their U.S.-sourced income, which may include qualified dividends subject to special tax rates.

  • Income Tax Payments: Nonresident aliens report any income tax withheld from their wages, salaries, pensions, annuities, and other U.S.-source income on Form 1040-NR. They may also need to make estimated tax payments if they expect to owe tax on income not subject to withholding.

  • Residency Status and Social Security Number: The form requires nonresident aliens to indicate their residency status for tax purposes and provide their Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) for identification purposes.

  • Alien Individuals and Treaty-Based Positions: Certain tax code provisions may allow nonresident aliens to claim treaty-based return positions or exemptions from tax on specific types of income. These positions must be properly documented and reported on the 1040-NR form.

  • Filing Requirements: Nonresident aliens must file Form 1040-NR by the due date, generally April 15th of the following tax year. However, if they were not present in the United States on April 15th, the filing deadline is extended to June 15th.


How to Fill Out a 1040-NR Tax Form

Filling out the 1040-NR tax form may seem complex at first, but with careful attention to detail and adherence to IRS guidelines, you can successfully report your income and fulfill your tax obligations.

You can also check our resume resource on How to Fill Out a Health Insurance Claim Form.

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Step 1: Gather Required Documents

Before you begin filling out the 1040-NR form, gather all necessary documents, including your passport, visa, Form W-2, Form 1042-S, and any other relevant income statements.

Step 2: Personal Information

Start by entering your personal information in the designated fields on the 1040-NR form. This includes your name, address, Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), and country of citizenship.

Step 3: Filing Status

Indicate your filing status on the 1040-NR form, such as single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, or head of household. Choose the status that best reflects your situation.

Step 4: Income

Report all income earned from U.S. sources during the tax year in the appropriate sections of the 1040-NR form. This may include wages, salaries, tips, dividends, interest, rental income, and other types of income.

Step 5: Deductions and Credits

Determine if you qualify for any deductions or credits that can reduce your taxable income or tax liability. Common deductions for non-resident aliens may include student loan interest, moving expenses, and certain business expenses.

Step 6: Tax Calculation

Calculate your total tax liability using the tax rates provided in the instructions for Form 1040-NR. Non-resident aliens are subject to different tax rates and may be eligible for certain exemptions and treaty benefits.

Step 7: Tax Payments and Refunds

If you owe taxes, submit payment along with your completed 1040-NR form by the filing deadline. If you overpaid taxes throughout the year, you may be entitled to a refund, which can be claimed by requesting direct deposit or a paper check.

Step 8: Signature and Date

Sign and date the 1040-NR form to certify that the information provided is accurate and complete. If you are filing jointly with your spouse, both spouses must sign the form.

You can also check our recommendations for resources on how to fill in a PHQ-9 printable form.

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FAQs: Nonresident Alien Tax Filings

Have questions about income taxes or what applies to green card holders? Peruse our FAQ section for all the answers you need. 

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1. What is a nonresident alien for tax purposes?

A nonresident alien is an individual who is not a U.S. citizen (not a permanent resident) and does not meet the criteria for being classified as a resident alien. Nonresident aliens are subject to specific taxable income rules and requirements when earning income in the United States.

2. What is the substantial presence test?

The substantial presence test is used to determine an individual's residency status for tax purposes. It considers the number of days an individual has been present in the United States over a three-year period, with specific weighted calculations for each year.

3. What is worldwide income, and how does it relate to nonresident aliens?

Worldwide income refers to all income earned by an individual, regardless of its source or location. Nonresident aliens are typically taxed only on income earned from U.S. sources, not on their worldwide income.

4. What tax forms do nonresident aliens use to file their taxes?

Nonresident aliens generally use Form 1040-NR, U.S. Nonresident Alien Income Tax Return, to report their income, deductions, credits, and tax payments to the IRS.

5. Are nonresident aliens eligible for tax deductions and credits?

Nonresident aliens may be eligible for certain deductions and credits, but they are typically more limited compared to those available to resident aliens or U.S. citizens. Common deductions for nonresident aliens include certain itemized deductions and treaty-based benefits.

6. How do nonresident aliens report income tax withholding?

Nonresident aliens report income tax withholding on Form 1040-NR. This form includes sections for reporting federal income tax withheld from wages, salaries, pensions, annuities, and other U.S.-source income.

7. Can nonresident aliens claim a tax treaty benefit?

Yes, nonresident aliens may be eligible for tax treaty benefits if their home country has a tax treaty with the United States. These treaties often provide reduced rates of withholding on certain types of income to avoid double taxation.


Be sure to review your completed form for accuracy before submitting it to the IRS, and consider seeking assistance from a tax professional if you encounter any challenges along the way. By following this guide, you can navigate the tax filing process with confidence and peace of mind.

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