The new Multidisciplinary Research Building on Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018.

Employment and Taxes

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Employment

  • General Employment Information- F-1 Students

    If you are interested in working in the U.S., it is important to learn the different types of work authorization available to you as an F-1 student. There are special immigration regulations and application processes for on-campus or off-campus internship/employment which will be covered in this section including:

    • On-campus Employment
    • Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
    • Optional Practical Training (OPT)

    Please keep in mind that you must receive proper work authorization before you begin working as unauthorized employment can have serious consequences on your F-1 student status.

    To find out more information:

    Make an appointment with an International Student Advisor by contacting the ISS office

    Phone:  (951)827-4113

    Email: internationalstudents@ucr.edu


    Resources:

    Visit Study in the States page, “Working in the United States”

    Visit Student and Exchange Visitor Program page, “Employment”

    Visit USCIS page, Students and Employment 

  • On-campus Employment/Internship - F-1 Students

    F-1 international students, who are maintaining their F-1 student status, are eligible to work on-campus at UC Riverside. F-1 undergraduate and graduate students may begin on-campus employment at the beginning of their first quarter at UCR.

    F-1 students are not required to receive written authorization from the ISS office to work on-campus as long as the following requirements are met:

    On-Campus Employment/ Internship Requirements

    • You must continue to maintain full-time F-1 status when engaging in on-campus employment/internship
    • You may work part-time (20 hours per week) while class is in session
    • You may work full-time (up to 40 hours per week) during academic breaks if you are returning to UCR the following term

     

    To find out more information:

    Make an appointment with an International Student Advisor by contacting the ISS office

    Phone:  (951)827-4113

    Email: internationalstudents@ucr.edu

    You can review on campus employment opportunities on Handshake

     

    Resources:

    Visit Student and Exchange Visitor Program page, “Employment”

  • Off-campus Employment/Internship –F-1 Students

    Curricular Practical Training (CPT):

    During the program of study at UCR, F-1 students may choose to work or intern off-campus by obtaining temporary work authorization called Curricular Practical Training (CPT) from the ISS office. The CPT employment/internship position (paid or unpaid) must be an integral part of an established curriculum for the program of study.

     

    CPT Eligibility:

    • Must be in valid F-1 status
    • Must have completed one academic year as a full-time student (with the exception of certain programs)
    • Must currently be enrolled in a full-course load of study (with the exception of the summer)
    • Must be enrolled in the internship course assigned by your Academic Advisor (Undergraduate) or your Graduate Advisor (Graduate)

     

    Types of CPT:

    • Degree Requirement CPT: It is when a degree program requires the student to complete an internship in order to graduate. 
      • Only certain UCR programs requires an internship to graduate.
    • Non-Required Course Credit CPT: It is when an internship is not a required part of the program but, the internship or work experience is integral to the student’s program and is required to enroll in an approved internship course during CPT.

     

    CPT Requirements:

    • Position must be related to your field of study
    • Must receive CPT authorization before starting any employment/internship
    • 12 months or more of full-time CPT will make you ineligible for Optional Practical Training (OPT)

    -Details on CPT Eligibility and Requirements can be found here 

    https://www.ice.gov/sevis/practical-training

     

    Part-Time CPT

    During the academic term (Fall, Spring, Winter quarters), all F-1 students may only work part-time CPT which is 20 hours or less per week. PHD students who have advanced to candidacy may be eligible to work full time in certain circumstances.

     

    Full-Time CPT

    During Summer quarter and school breaks, students may work full-time CPT which is more than 20 hours per week.

     

    Applying for CPT

    1. Obtain official offer letter from your prospective employer

    2. Complete CPT Request Form (for graduate students/ for undergraduate students)

    • Must be signed by you and your Academic Advisor (Undergraduate students) or Graduate Advisor (Graduate Students)

    3. Submit the offer letter and CPT Request Form to ISS Office

    4. Enroll in internship course and receive new CPT I-20 from ISS office

    • (Undergraduate) Must complete the Internship Documentation packet from the Career Center

     

    To find out more information:

    Make an appointment with an International Student Advisor by contacting the ISS office:

    Phone: (951)827-4113

    Email: internationalstudents@ucr.edu


    Resources:

  • Optional Practical Training (OPT) - F-1 Students

    OPT Application Process

    1. To access the OPT Application checklist and guidelines, please click here

    2. Important OPT & STEM OPT Application Updates:

    On September 29, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California issued a nationwide preliminary injunction and stay on implementation of the 2020 final USCIS fee rule in its entirety. This means that new fee increase and updated form requirement are now on hold until further notice.

    Using the chart below, students will need to make sure that they are using the correct version of Form I-765 (EAD card application form) and the I-765 Fee amount before mailing your OPT documents to USCIS. For more information about the updates, please visit the I-765 website.

    Application Postmark Date Form I-765 Version used I-765 Fee
    Before August 25, 2020 Must use 12/26/19  edition $410
    On or after August 25, 2020 but before October 2, 2020 Must use 08/25/20 edition $410
    On or after October 2, 2020 *Check the I-765 site for the correct edition *$410

     


    3. Students can also access the online OPT Tutorial by clicking here

    4. To access a Sample I-765 (08/25/20 Edition), please click here 

    5. Applying for OPT: Gather required OPT documents on OPT Application checklist


    OPT Reporting Requirements
     

    During the OPT period, F-1 students are required to report their information through the SEVP OPT Portal or to the UCR ISS office as a way to maintain legal F-1 status. Failure to report any changes during the OPT period may result in a loss of F-1 status. If any changes occur, it will be the student’s responsibility to report these changes within 10 days of that change including:

    • Personal Information
    • Employer Information

     

    SEVP OPT Portal

    The SEVP OPT Portal is an important and convenient tool to fulfill the legal OPT reporting requirements during the OPT period. This portal is only available for students approved for OPT. Around the start date of the EAD card, SEVIS will email an SEVP OPT Portal link to the student’s UCR email address. If the SEVP OPT portal link has expired or has locked, students should contact the ISS office to reset the link. If the link cannot be located, students should check their spam mail. For technical issues, please contact the SEVIS Help Desk 1-800-892-4829.

     

    Unemployment Rule

    Unemployment days are counted from the start date on your EAD card. For Post-Completion OPT students, the maximum period of unemployment is 90 days. Employment information should be reported in the SEVP OPT Portal within 10 days of the start date. If there is no employment information listed in the SEVP OPT Portal, that will be seen as unemployment time. Please note that exceeding unemployment time will result in a loss of F-1 status.

     

  • 24-Month STEM OPT Extension- F-1 Students

    STEM OPT Application Process

    1. The 24-Month STEM OPT Extension Application Checklist includes information on the application process and the required documents. To access the checklist, please click here


    2.  Important OPT & STEM OPT Application Updates:

    On September 29, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California issued a nationwide preliminary injunction and stay on implementation of the 2020 final USCIS fee rule in its entirety. This means that new fee increase and updated form requirement are now on hold until further notice.

    Using the chart below, students will need to make sure that they are using the correct version of Form I-765 (EAD card application form) and the I-765 Fee amount before mailing your OPT documents to USCIS. For more information about the updates, please visit the I-765 website.

    Application Postmark Date Form I-765 Version used I-765 Fee
    Before August 25, 2020 Must use 12/26/19  edition $410
    On or after August 25, 2020 but before October 2, 2020 Must use 08/25/20 edition $410
    On or after October 2, 2020 *Check the I-765 site for the correct edition *$410

    3. Students can also access the online STEM OPT Tutorial by clicking here

    • To access a Sample STEM OPT Form I-765 (08/25/20 Edition), please click here.
    • To access a Sample STEM OPT Form I-983 , please click here.

    STEM OPT Reporting Requirements

    In order to maintain legal F-1 status during STEM OPT, F-1 students must submit a report every six months and update any changes (including personal information & employment information) within 10 days. All STEM OPT reports must be submitted to ISS office (internationalstudents@ucr.edu) ahead of time. Once received, an ISS Advisor will review and submit the report in SEVIS system.

     

    Here is a chart of the STEM OPT Reporting Requirements:

    Report Deadline Report Due
    6 Months on STEM OPT

    Validation Report Due:

    1. STEM OPT Reporting Form
    12 Months on STEM OPT

    Annual Evaluation Report Due:

    1. STEM OPT Reporting Form
    2. Evaluation on Student Progress (1st portion of page 5 in I-983 Training Plan)
    18 Months on STEM OPT

    Validation Report Due:

    1. STEM OPT Reporting Form
    24 Months on STEM OPT

    Final Annual Evaluation Report Due:

    1. STEM OPT Reporting Form
    2. Final Evaluation (2nd portion of page 5 in I-983 Training Plan)
    Changes in STEM OPT

    Change of Address or Contact Information:

    1. Update in SEVP OPT Portal

    Change of Employer:

    1. STEM OPT Reporting Form
    2. Final Evaluation of I-983 for previous employer
    3.  New I-983 for new employer

     

    • General Employment Information- J-1 Students

      If you are interested in working in the U.S., it is important to learn the different types of work authorization available to you as a J-1 student. There are special immigration regulations and application processes for on-campus or off-campus internship/employment which will be covered in this section including: On-campus Employment and J-1 Academic Training

      On-campus Employment:

      • J-1 students must receive written authorization from the ISS office to work on-campus
      • You may work part-time (20 hours per week) while class is in session
      • You may work full-time (up to 40 hours per week) during academic breaks if you are returning to UCR the following term
      • You must continue to maintain full-time F-1 status when engaging in on-campus employment/internship

       

      Academic Training (AT)

      • Academic Training is a period of off-campus work authorization in a J-1 student's field of study
      • Academic training must be authorized by a responsible officer in ISS before you begin working and you must have a job offer before applying. You can engage in Academic Training both before and after the completion of your studies as long as you meet the eligibility requirements. Academic training is generally used after the completion of an academic program. For post completion academic training; you must apply before your DS-2019 or Academic program expires-whichever is earlier
      • Undergraduate and Graduate students are eligible for 18 months of academic training. PHD students are eligible for up to 36 months of AT.
      • Undergraduate or Graduate students in a program that is less than eighteen months old are eligible for a period of AT equal to the time that they have been in J status.

      Please review our Academic Training Request Form for eligibility requirements and additional information.

       

    • How to apply for a Social Security Number

      A Social Security Number (SSN) is assigned to individuals who are authorized to work in the United States. The SSN is a way to report wages to the U.S. government.

      Obtaining an SSN

      Obtaining an SSN Applying for an SSN is free. You must apply in person. You are eligible for an SSN only if you are employed or have the appropriate work authorization. If you do not meet one of these criteria, you will not qualify for a SSN.

      1.Gather the Required Documents:

      2.Visit the Social Security Administration Office. To locate your local Social Security Administration Office, please click here.

       

      To access important resources, please see below:

      Social Security Administration, International Students and Social Security Numbers guide [pdf] 

      Study in the States page, Obtaining a Social Security Number

    Taxes

    • Do I have to file tax related forms?
    • What forms am I required to complete?
      • If you received a U.S. salary during previous tax year or a fellowship, scholarship or grant in excess of university tuition and fees, you must file the appropriate federal (usually form 1040NREZ or 1040NR) and state tax forms (540NR). The forms you are required to complete may vary due to your individual tax circumstances and the amount of time you have been in the United States.
      • Regardless of whether or not you have received income, students and scholars in F and J status (and dependents), are required to file Form 8843. Form 8843 is not an income tax form. It is an informational statement required by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for nonresidents for tax purposes (including spouses or dependents of nonresidents).

      Resources:

      2019 Federal Tax Workshop Presentation
      2019 California State Tax Workshop Presentation

    • Can the International Student and Scholars office help me file my tax forms?

      Since we are not tax experts, we cannot provide you with specific tax advice; however, we do provide you with the following resources to assist you with filing tax related reports.

      Access to GLACIER Tax Prep (GTP)

      • GTP is a user-friendly online federal income tax filing program designed for international students and scholars who are considered nonresidents for tax filing purposes. UCR provides UCR international students and scholars with free access to GTP.
      • You are eligible to use Glacier Tax Prep if you qualify as a nonresident for tax purpose and meet the following eligibility requirements.
        • F-1 and J-1 students enrolled at UCR in the previous calendar year
        • F-1 students on Optional Practical Training in the previous calendar year
        • UCR J-1 students on Academic Training in the previous calendar year
        • Current J-1 visiting scholars associated with UCR in the previous calendar year
        • F-2 and J-2 dependents of the above

      Introduction to Federal Tax Workshops are designed to provide you with general information on tax filing in the U.S. and also provide an overview of the GLACIER Tax Prep (GTP) software (typically from February to July). If this is your first time filing taxes in the United States, we recommend that you attend one of these workshops before accessing GTP.

       

      State Tax Workshop is presented by the California State Tax Franchise Board to assist you with filing any required State tax forms. This workshop is held during the tax season (typically between February to April). We recommend that you complete your federal taxes before attending this workshop.

       

      Tax Filing Timeline

      **The resources listed are provided to help you gather information about filing taxes in the United States and are not a substitute for legal tax advice. If you have complicated tax questions, we recommend that you contact the Internal Revenue Service or a certified tax professional

       

      Resources:

      2019 Federal Tax Workshop Presentation
      2019 California State Tax Workshop Presentation

    • 2019 Tax Changes Due to Coronavirus

      Due to COVID-19, a number of changes have been made: