Common forms of income for students



Completing your income tax return can be complicated and frustrating, depending on your sources of income and your allowable deductions.  For the most part, if you are a student, your income will probably be reported to you on one of the reporting documents discussed in the following table.

Form What it reports
W-2 If you are paid as an employee, your employer will report your wages on a W-2 form.  It shows the amount of money your employer paid you and all withholdings taken against that income. 

This form is used to report several differnt types of payments to individuals.  How you report the payment for tax purposes will depend on the type of payment you receive.  There are two basic types of payment.  

1.  Issued to students, postdoctoral scholars, and student-interns who are US citizens or residents for tax purposes, and

  • who receive scholarships or fellowships through payrolls' non-compensatory payment system and choose to have taxes withheld from their payments, or
  • who receive payments from ET&R that are determined to be 1099 reportable, e.g., awards, certain expense reimbursements, etc..

2.  Issued to individuals for services rendered.


Duke reports the total transactions billed through your Bursar account for qualified tuition and fees and Duke-administered grants and scholarships.  No information regarding any other payments made is included on the 1098-T or reported to the IRS.

Courtesy Letter

Duke mails a courtesy letter to students who are (a) US citizens, permanent residents, or residents for tax purposes, (b) receive scholarships or fellowships through the non-compensatory payment system, and (c) choose not to have tax withholdings taken from their payment.*

1042-S Issued to foreign national students, postdoctoral scholars, and student-interns who are not residents for tax purposes and who receive scholarship or fellowship payments through the non-compensatory payment system.  In some instances, students may receive multiple 1042-S formsone for payments that fall under the tax treaty and another for payments that fall outside the tax treaty.

* If you choose not to have taxes withheld, depending on the amount of your tax liability, you may be required to pay estimated taxes.