Filing Is Required
Even if Dartmouth withholds federal income tax from your pay, you still need to file a tax return. The U.S. tax system requires that taxes be withheld from your pay as you earn it. You file a federal tax return after the end of the calendar year to reconcile the taxes withheld with your actual tax liability. The process of completing the tax return determines your tax liability.
You still need to file Form 8843 if you had no U.S. earned income or scholarship during the year.
The tax year is from January 1 to December 31. You file your tax return by mid-April of the following year.
Penalties for Not Filing Taxes
If you owe taxes and don’t file a return, the IRS can assess penalty and interest and seize U.S. bank assets for repayment. Fines and penalties often can be more than the original debt.
The IRS will not impose penalties if no tax is due. However, the terms of your visa require you to comply with all laws of the United States, including the requirement to file an income tax return.
You might be required to show proof that you filed if you wish to change your visa status, obtain permanent residency, or regain entry into the United States once you have left. Don't risk your visa status by failing to comply with this requirement.