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Classification: Determination of Residency

Initial Determination

A student attending a CSU as a first-time freshman, transfer or as a post-baccalaureate student must have the legal capacity to establish residency in the State of California. If the student is under the age of 19 (with limited exceptions), the student’s residence status is derived from that of the parent or, if both parents are deceased, from that of the legal guardian.

Generally speaking, to be eligible for classification as a California resident for tuition purposes, the student or if the student is a minor, the parent/guardian must provide verification that these requirements are satisfied:

  1. Physical Presence: The student or parent/guardian must be physically present in California for more than one year immediately preceding the Residence Determination Date in which enrollment is contemplated. For example, if a student plans to attend the CSU for the Fall 2019 academic term, and the Residence Determination Date for that term is September 20, 2019, the student must establish physical presence in California no later than September 19, 2018.
  2. Intent: The student or parent/guardian must demonstrate intent to remain indefinitely in the state for more than one year immediately preceding the Residence Determination Date and sever all residential ties with the former state or country of residence. Additionally, there must be sufficient documentation to demonstrate that intent was established more than one year (a minimum of one year and one day) prior to the Residence Determination Date.

Please refer to the Residence Determination Dates below:

Table

Residence Determination Dates

Quarterly Calendars

  • FallSeptember 20
  • WinterJanuary 5
  • SpringApril 1
  • SummerJuly 1

Seme​ster Calendars

  • FallSeptember 20
  • WinterJanuary 5
    ​(Stanislaus Only)
  • SpringJanuary 25
  • SummerJune 1

CalState Te​ach

  • Stage 1September 20
  • Stage 2January 5
  • Stage 3June 1
  • Stage 4September 20


Intent to remain indefinitely in California can be supported by various actions and documents. Factors that may be considered in determining intent include the following:

  • State where the student is registered to vote
  • Voting history
  • State driver’s license or identification card
  • State vehicle registration
  • State income tax returns
  • Address that is listed on federal income tax returns
  • Locations listed as the student’s permanent military address or home address
  • State-issued professional licenses (e.g., nursing, teaching credentials)
  • Locations of active memberships in professional organizations (e.g., police union, teachers’ union)
  • Locations of financial accounts

Actions and/or documents which show residential ties to a State or country other than California may be a cause for a denial of residency.

For more information about an initial classification of residency in California, see California Education Code Section 68017 and California Code of Regulations Title 5, Sections 41904 and 41905.




Reclassification After Initial Residency Determination (only applies for continuing students)​

A student classified as a nonresident for a prior term may seek reclassification in any subsequent term; however, reclassification requires that, in addition to satisfying the requirements of physical presence and intent to remain indefinitely in the state, the student must also satisfy the requirement of financial independence as outlined in Title 5 CCR § 41905.5. To do so, the student must contact the appropriate person in the campus admissions office and complete the approved Residence Questionnaire Form and provide supporting documents.

41905.5. Residence Reclassification - Financial Independence Requirement

  • Any nonresident student requesting reclassification to resident for tuition purposes must demonstrate financial independence
  • Student has not and will not be claimed as an exemption for state and federal tax purposes by his/her parent in the calendar year the reclassification application is made and in any of the three calendar years prior to the reclassification application
  • Student has not and will not receive more than seven hundred fifty dollars ($750) per year in financial assistance from his/her parent in the calendar year the reclassification application is made and in any of the three calendar years prior to the reclassification application
  • Student has not lived and will not live for more than six weeks in the home of his/her parent during the calendar year the reclassification application is made and in any of the three calendar years prior to the reclassification application

Note: Students who receive a government scholarship and/or financial assistance should be viewed the same as state and federal financial aid, and athletics grants-is-aid; and should not be counted as parental support.

Effective Fall 2020 academic term, if the student meets at least one of the following criteria, the student does not have to meet the financial independence requirement.  Student must provide the campus admissions office supporting documents (e.g. state income tax returns, court documents, marriage certificate, military order form) that demonstrate they meet the criteria.

  • Dependent on a parent who has California residence for more than one year immediately preceding the residence determination date;
  • Enrolled in a graduate or post‐baccalaureate program, regardless of age;
  • Turned 24 years of age by the residence determination date;
  • Married or registered domestic partner as of the residence determination date;
  • Active duty members serving in the U.S Armed Forces
  • Veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces
  • Legal dependent other than spouse or registered domestic partner
  • Former ward of the court, foster youth or both parents are deceased
  • Declared by a court to be an emancipated minor
  • Unaccompanied youth who is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless

Students financially dependent on nonresident parents are not eligible for reclassification. As with the initial residence classification, the campus must review the information presented by the student in connection with any subsequent reclassification request and notify the student of its decision. If reclassification is denied, the student has the right to appeal if they meet the criteria for appeals.