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Last Updated: 12/28/2016

Aliens

If you are not a United States (U.S.) citizen, you are considered an alien for tax purposes.

The amount and type of income taxable by Minnesota depends largely on whether you are classified as a “resident” or “nonresident” alien for federal tax purposes.

Determining federal residency status

Before you can determine your Minnesota tax responsibilities, first determine your residency status for federal tax purposes.
To determine your federal residency status, see federal Publication 519, U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens.

How to file your Minnesota Individual Income Tax return

Resident alien

A resident alien has the same filing and tax requirements as any U.S. citizen. As a resident alien, your Minnesota residency status is one of the following:

  • Full-year resident. If your principal residence was in Min¬nesota for the entire year, you are considered a full-year Minnesota resident. If you are required to file a federal income tax return, are considered a resident of Minnesota for tax purposes, and your Minnesota gross income meets the minimum filing requirement, file Form M1, Individual Income Tax return. You will pay Minnesota tax on your taxable income from all sources, including sources not in Minnesota.
  • Part-year resident. If you moved into or out of Minnesota during the year, you are a part-year resident. If you are required to file a federal income tax return and your Minnesota gross income meets the minimum filing requirement ($10,350 for 2016), you are required to file Form M1 and Schedule M1NR, Nonresident/Part-Year Residents.
  • Nonresident. If your principal residence was in another state or country, you may still be considered a Minnesota resident for tax purposes under the 183-day rule. If your Minnesota gross income meets the minimum filing requirement ($10,350 for 2016), you are required to file Form M1 and Schedule M1NR.

Nonresident alien

If you’re a nonresident alien and required to file a federal income tax return, you may also have to file Form M1, Individual Income Tax return, if you meet the Minnesota filing requirements. 

Nonresident aliens are taxed differently than resident aliens and are not eligible for certain state tax deductions and credits. Some of the key differences include:

  • Filing status. If you used any of the “married” filing statuses on your federal income tax return, you must use the “married filing separately” filing status on your Minnesota income tax return. This requirement applies even if you are allowed to claim an exemption for your spouse.
  • State tax deduction. You must add the state tax deduction back to Minnesota taxable income on your Minnesota income tax return.  Use one of the amounts listed below:
  • Credits. Nonresident aliens do not qualify for the Minnesota Working Family Credit. Married nonresident aliens do not qualify for the Minnesota Marriage Credit, Child and Dependent Care Credit, or K-12 Education Credit because they must file separate Minnesota returns.

For detailed filing requirements and other information, see Aliens (Income Tax Fact Sheet 16).