Tax Filing Tips for College Students

Written by April 24, 2023

The tax filing deadline was extended to October 16th due to natural disasters and storms in a number of states, including California. As students continue to file taxes, the LITC has compiled a number of resources and tips for college students who may be filing for the first time.

Note: If you are located in the following counties, this extension does not apply to you: Imperial, Kern, Lassen, Modoc, Plumas, Shasta, and Sierra.

Tax Resources

Although filing your taxes can be difficult, especially if it is your first time, it doesn’t have to be! There are a number of online resources that can help students file taxes at a low cost.

  1. TurboTax – $69
  2. TaxSlayer- $55
  3. CashApp Taxes- $0

Do I need to file as a student?

Yes and No. We’ve made it easy for you to determine if you need to file taxes as a student, just follow the chart below!

What is considered unearned income?

Unearned income is money made or received as a result of interest, dividends, investments, unemployment compensation, retirement plans, etc.

Note: While you aren’t required to file taxes if your income is less than $12,950, you should consider doing so in order to receive refunds from states that withhold taxes.

What forms are required to file?

  1. 1098-E: This form is for students with loans. You will need to file a separate 1098-E for each loan service you are using. This form is only necessary if you paid $600 or more in interest for the year.
  2. 1098-T: If you or your parents paid out of pocket tuition and fees during the tax year, you will almost certainly receive a Form 1098-T from your school.
  3. Form 1040: this is the standard form your tax service will use to file your annual income tax return.
  4. W-2: This form will be given to you by your employer. This form reflects your entire annual earnings as well as the amount of taxes taken from your pay.

We hope our tips have given you a glimpse into filing your taxes as a student, especially if you’re unsure where to start. Remember, you have until October 16th!