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Taxes

J-1 visa holders are now required to file U.S. tax returns to satisfy their U.S. income tax liability. Please make sure you carefully read the information below so you know what is required from you ahead of your summer at camp.

Due to recent changes to the tax laws in the U.S. income tax system, and the elimination of personal exemptions (which was $4,050 per individual in 2017), Camp Counselors and Campowers (who hold J-1 visas) will now have taxes deducted from their pocket money and will be required to file a U.S. Federal income tax return and, in certain cases, a State income tax return to satisfy their U.S. income tax liability.

The deadline to file your income tax return for tax year 2023 is April 15, 2024.

Please be aware that Camp America does not have tax preparation capabilities and therefore cannot legally give advice on US taxes. However, we can provide a referral to an accounting firm which can assist with completing and filing the foregoing tax forms and remitting the tax due to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”). Below is an outline of the documents that you would be required to submit in connection with your U.S. tax reporting obligations.

What you will need to file your tax return(s):

  1. Social Security Number
  2. W-2 Form: This form is your U.S. earnings statement for 2024. The W2 form will be sent to you by your camp at the start of 2024. You will need to submit a copy to your tax preparer should you decide to retain an accounting firm to complete your Federal and State (if required) income tax returns. Employers are required by law to supply a W-2 to Camp Counselors but if you chose to prepare your tax return(s) yourself and know the amount of taxes that have been withheld, even though we do not recommend it, you might be able to calculate your income tax liability before your receive your W-2.
  3. DS-2019 Form

How to complete your tax declaration:

  1. SPRINTAX - You can file through Sprintax, a tax preparation software designed for internationals, for a special rate of $5 (for a Federal Tax Return only, charges for State taxes may apply) negotiated by Camp America by using this link. More information on the services offered by Sprintax can be found in this instruction sheet, and for additional support you can use their 24/7 live chat service here.
  2. Alternatively, you can also go on the IRS website directly and file free of charge. All participants that were physically present in the US on a J-1 visa between January 1st – December 31st 2024 must complete and submit form 8843. Since you did earn US income in 2024, you are also required to file a US Income Tax Return. To do so, you should first determine if you are considered a resident or not for US tax purposes by taking the Substantial Presence Test. Most J-1 participants will be considered Nonresident Aliens for tax purposes and will need to use tax form 1040NR. More information on the different tax forms that be found on the IRS website.

The AIFS Camp Counselor and Campower Programme is not affiliated with any particular U.S. tax preparer, and we recommend thoroughly checking the preparer’s credentials before using their services. Please note that there is a price for using the services of designated agencies or Sprintax software.

Still have some questions?

If you still have questions regarding Camp America, the application process, the costs and inclusions, or anything else related to our programme, please follow the links below to read our FAQs or send us a message directly using our contact form.