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How to Change Your Nonresident Status to Resident

Find out how to change your nonresident status to resident status for tuition purposes.

Note: All information is subject to change without notice.

Change of Classification Instruction Sheet Handout (PDF)

Change of Classification Petition (PDF)

Each quarter has a specific filing period, please see the Filing Dates and Deadlines page. 

Upcoming Graduate Nonresident Information Sessions

  • Wednesday, January 18, 2017: 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m., Student Center, Dolores Huerta-Philip Vera Cruz Room
  • Wednesday, January 18, 2017: 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m., Student Center, Dolores Huerta-Philip Vera Cruz Room

Here are the instructions for a continuing UCSD student who wants to change from a nonresident to a resident for tuition purposes:

Note:

The student is responsible for submitting all relevant information, requested documentation, written explanations, and clarifications to support an in-state residency request by the deadline. All relevant information, requested documentation, written explanations, and clarifications that you have not submitted prior to the deadline will not be considered or reviewed by the legal analysts if you chose to appeal the final determination. Any student, following a denied change of classification, may appeal to the Residence Specialist in writing within 30 calendar days of the denial notification.

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At least one year before the quarter you are seeking a reclassification, begin the process of becoming a California resident

  1. Establish a physical presence by living in California for 366 days prior to the first day of instruction you wish to be a resident.
  2. Establish your intent to become a California resident by changing your ties immediately from your previous residence to this state.
  3. Meet one of the financial independence requirements.

Determine your eligibility

You will not be eligible for a change of classification until:

  • You are an adult over age 18 and a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or eligible visa holderand
  • You have established all your ties to California at least one year prior to the residence determination date for the quarter you are seeking the reclassification (see Residence Determination Dates), and
  • You can meet one of the financial independence requirements, and
  • BEFORE you submit the petition and documentation, you are enrolled for that quarter.

Filing Period for your Change of Classification petition and documentation

Please see the Filing Dates and Deadlines page.

Note:

Each quarter has a specific filing period. There is no exception to deadline dates. Materials must be received in the Registrar's Office by 4:30 p.m. on deadline day.

Students are urged to apply early enough to avoid paying late registration fees, and to apply as soon as the filing period begins. Students are responsible for payment of all fees by the applicable fee payment deadline. If a student is denied residence and appeals the campus decision, a response from the Residence Specialist may take longer than 8 weeks.

Complete the petition to change your classification to resident status

  1. Print the Change of Classification petition (PDF).
  2. Complete all applicable information.
  3. Sign and date the bottom of the form.

Make copies of all 12 applicable documents and submit them in the proper format

Make copies of all 12 applicable documents and write an explanation for all missing or late dated documents. Documents must be single-sided; black out social security numbers on any or all documents.

Verify your physical presence, intent, and financial independence for the past year by providing all 12 of the following:

  1. California driver's license or a California ID card as soon as possible but within a few months of arriving in the state. The DMV has very specific rules; see their information for persons new to California. Operating a vehicle in California that is not owned by you still requires you to obtain a California driver's license and proof of California car insurance.
  2. Voter registration card or affidavit from Registrar of Voters. Contact Registrar of Voters at (800) 696-0136, or check status and apply online at the County of San Diego's website.
  3. A copy of the first month's bank account statement with a California bank, or a bank statement showing when address was changed to California and the June, July, and August bank statements, immediately prior to the quarter you petition.
  4. California car registration and car insurance card as soon as possible, but within a few months of arriving in the state. The DMV has very specific rules; see their information for persons new to California. Operating a vehicle in California that  is not owned by you still requires you to obtain a California driver's license and proof of California car insurance.
  5. Federal and all state tax returns for the past year, or W2s only if you did not file in any state. Your residency will be questioned if, during the period you are claiming to be a California resident, you file a full-year resident tax return in another state or file a full-year nonresident California state tax return. If you filed a California Part-Year Resident return (Form 540NR), be sure to include your Schedule CA page (540NR).  Black out all social security numbers on all tax documents. If you did not keep copies, call Franchise Tax Board for copies of state tax return and the IRS for your federal tax return at least 90 days before you submit your packet.
  6. Evidence of financial independence (you must meet ONE requirement). You:
    • Are a single undergraduate under age 24 and were not claimed as a dependent for tax purposes by either nonresident parent or any other individual for the current and 2 tax years immediately preceding the quarter for which you request classification as a resident, and you can demonstrate self-sufficiency for the current and 2 preceding years. Single undergraduates under 24 must submit, for the applicable quarter a petition is being filed, a budget worksheet form. Use the applicable form and review the sample:

      Document all sources of income listed on the worksheet, and include your own and your parents' prior 2 tax years of state and federal tax returns, or

    • Are financially dependent on a California resident parent who meets the University's requirements for residence for tuition purposes (eligible to establish residence, one year physical presence showing intent to remain in the state); student would submit the 12 items for the parent(s) claiming to be a resident(s) and for the student his/herself, or
    • Will be at least 24 years old by Dec. 31 of the calendar year for which classification as a resident is requested (student would submit copy of driver's license), or
    • Are a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces, or
    • Are a ward of the court or both parents are deceased, or
    • Have a legal dependent(s), or
    • Are a married student who was not claimed as an income tax deduction by either parent or any other individual for the tax year immediately preceding the term for which classification as a resident is requested, or
    • Are a graduate or professional school student who was not claimed as an income tax deduction by either parent or any other individual for the tax year immediately preceding the term for which classification as a resident is requested (submit copies of parents' federal and state tax returns for the prior tax year), or
    • Are a graduate or professional school student who is employed at the University of California 49 percent or more time (or awarded the equivalent in University-administered funds) during the quarter for which classification as a resident is requested (submit letter from graduate department stating as such), or
    • Reached the age of majority (18) in California while your parents were residents of California, and they left the state to establish a residence elsewhere, and you continue to live in California after their departure.
  7. Proof of physical presence in California for the summer immediately prior to the change of classification request:
    • Employment verification from California employer, or from your major department attesting to physical presence in the state, and
    • Either bank or credit card statements, whichever one indicates dates/location activity on them for June, July, and August. If there are other names on the account in addition to the student's, the only statements that can be provided must be in the student's name only.
    • If absent from the state, provide airline tickets.
    • If on an out-of-state research appointment, provide a letter from your department endorsing your absence.
    • Do not submit store receipts as proof of your physical presence.

    Summer actions count! A student's actions during the entire year, including the summer, affect the determination made regarding residence status for tuition purposes. A student who is in California solely for educational purposes is not eligible for California residence for tuition purposes regardless of the length of his or her stay.

    If a student returns to his or her former place of residence (outside California), he or she will be presumed to be in California solely for educational purposes and only strong evidence to the contrary will rebut this presumption.

    A student seeking to establish California residence who accepts employment or conducts research outside of California will be questioned regarding his or her attempts to find employment and/ or conduct research within California. Leaving the state for a unique research opportunity or for special circumstances (such as a medical emergency) may not preclude the student from being classified as a resident, but the burden will be on the student to provide convincing evidence that leaving the state was not inconsistent with his or her claim of permanent residence. See Residence for Tuition Purposes: Temporary Absences.

  8. Copies of all your housing contracts, monthly rental agreements, lease or proof of property ownership for the past year, or verification in writing from property owner of housing agreement.
  9. Proof of credit and memberships with CA merchants, e.g. stores, supermarkets, video clubs, fitness clubs, public library, magazine subscriptions, and religious affiliations.
  10. Proof of your belongings moved into California such as a moving van bill of lading, U-Haul moving van receipts, etc.
  11. Proof of utilities in your name, e.g. phone, gas, electric, TV, cable, Internet, water, etc. Submit the first and the latest statements only.
  12. If you are a permanent resident through the INS, copy of your alien registration card.

Note:

Attach a written statement as to the circumstances of any missing or late-dated documents. Make copies of all documentation to keep for your records.

Make a final review of your petition and supporting documents

Before you submit your package, make sure:

  • You are enrolled at UCSD for the quarter you are seeking the reclassification (otherwise, your petition will not be reviewed).
  • You've filled out the petition correctly and fully.
  • You're providing copies of all 12 required documents, or a written explanation for all missing or late-dated documents.
  • Copies of your 12 supporting documents are single-sided (no 2-sided documents).
  • You've completed a Budget Worksheet as one of your 12 documents,ONLY if you're a single undergraduate under age 24.
  • All social security numbers are completely blacked out on all documents.

Submit your petition and documentation, and wait for a response

Submit your petition and documentation (all single-sided, no two-sided documents) during the dates allowed (see step 3: "Decide from the following choices which quarter you will file"), and wait for a response.

  1. Deliver or mail your petition and documentation:
    • Drop off:
      Registrar's Office - Attn: Residence Deputy
      Student Services Center, 2nd floor (map), between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. weekdays.
    • Mail in:
      UCSD Change of Residence Deputy
      Registrar's Office 0022
      Student Services Center, 2nd floor
      9500 Gilman Drive
      La Jolla, CA 92093-0022
  2. Wait for an e-mail response from the change of residence deputy within 7 business days.

Note:

The student is responsible for submitting all relevant information, requested documentation, written explanations, and clarifications to support an in-state residency request by the deadline. All relevant information, requested documentation, written explanations, and clarifications that you have not submitted prior to the deadline will not be considered or reviewed by the legal analysts if you chose to appeal the final determination. Any student, following a denied change of classification, may appeal to the Residence Specialist in writing within 30 calendar days of the denial notification.

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