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- If both you and your wife are nonresident aliens because you are an F-1 student
and she is in F-2 status or you are in J-1 status and she is in J-2 status, the
answer is generally no for federal income tax purposes. In limited cases, a spousal
exemption may be claimed, but this is not the same as filing a joint return and
is discussed in the “exemptions” section of the instructions for the 1040NR.
- However, there are some elections that may apply if either you or your wife is
in a different immigration status such as H-1B or O-1, or if one of you is a
U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
- For additional information refer to IRS Publication 519, U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens at www.irs.gov. [External Site]
- State filing rules may be different.