Under Florida law, being a "Florida Resident" does not automatically classify you as a "Florida resident for tuition purposes."
A Florida "resident for tuition purposes" is a person who has, or a dependent person whose parent, legal guardian, or spouse has established and maintained legal residence in Florida for at least twelve months prior to the first day of the term. Note: Students, who depend on out-of-state parents for support, are presumed to be legal residents of the same state as their parents.
New and renewal applicants (Newly admitted or returning) to UNF who believe they meet requirements to be considered a "resident for tuition purposes" should complete the Residency Declaration once they have been admitted.
Current UNF students who were initially classified as nonresidents for tuition purposes may become eligible for reclassification as residents for tuition purposes only if the individual (or the parents of that individual, if that individual is a dependent) presents documentation evidencing permanent residency in this state for 12 consecutive months. The individual (or his/her parents, if that individual is a dependent) must present documentation that substantiates residency in this state is for the purpose of maintaining a bona fide domicile, rather than for the purpose of maintaining a mere temporary residence or abode incident to enrollment in an institution of higher education. In this case, the Residency Reclassification Application would be required.
With very few exceptions, a dependent student is considered to be a legal resident of the same state as the student's parents.
To qualify for in-state status for tuition purposes, the parent of the dependent student must complete the Residency Declaration or the Residency Reclassification Application on behalf of the student. (Please note: requests for Residency Reclassification may require documentation beyond that listed here.)
The Parent must Provide Evidence to Substantiate:
Moreover, the parent must also demonstrate the absence of legal ties to another state and establishment of a bona fide domicile in Florida (rather than maintaining a temporary residence incident to enrollment at the university). Continued legal ties to another state contradict establishment of Florida domicile.
To be considered independent for the tuition purposes, the following criteria will be considered:
Independent students must document the source of their financial support, clearly demonstrating that a parent or legal guardian no longer claims them as a dependent for federal income tax purposes. (Please note: requests for Residency Reclassification may require documentation beyond that listed here.)
The student must provide evidence to substantiate a claim to in-state residency by completing the Residency Declaration or the Residency Reclassification Application and Declaration with:
In addition, the student must also produce evidence of ...
Or for periods of non-enrollment --
When the initial request or the request for residency reclassification is evaluated, university staff will estimate the student's expenses for the domicile year. These estimates are based on cost of attendance figures used for financial aid eligibility. The estimate is specific to the student and it is dependent on number of hours enrolled, place of residence (on-campus or off-campus) and other circumstances.
The student must conclusively document that they have provided at least 51% of these expenses. Financial independence can be substantiated with:
Income can include:
Monetary gifts, personal loans or financial support in the form of room, board or other expenses from the student's parents, other relatives, a significant other or friends demonstrates that the student lacks independence and is financially dependent upon others. In such cases, the student is NOT considered independent.
The documents you need will depend on whether you are establishing initial residency or submitting a request for residency reclassification and whether you are considered a dependent or independent student. Documentary evidence with dates that evidence the 12 month qualifying period will be required for all residency requests.
For initial classification two forms of identification dated at least 2 forms of approved identification, issued at least 12 months prior to the beginning of the term for which residency is sought. Refer to this list of IDs approved as Documentary Evidence (page 10).
The evidentiary requirement for residency reclassification goes beyond that for initial classification, because the student has previously been determined to be an out-of-state resident. For residency reclassification the student, or his or her parent if a dependent student, must present documentation substantiating residency in the state of Florida for the purpose of marinating bona fide domicile, rather than for the purpose of maintaining temporary residence incident to enrollment at an institution of higher education. Refer to these examples of evidence that may substantiate bona fide domicile (page 12).
To qualify as a Florida resident for tuition purposes, the claimant must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident alien, or legal alien granted indefinite stay by the Immigration and Naturalization Service. Click for additional information regarding eligible Alien types (starting on Appendix C).
Non-parent family members who have legal guardianship of a student who is not yet 18, and/or have claimed the student on federal income taxes for the past three years, may be used as claimant on the initial residency classification form or the request for residency reclassification application.
If the non-parent family member does not meet these criteria, he or she cannot be considered a claim to residency. Students who do not meet the criteria to be considered independent for residency purposes will be considered residents of the state in which their parent or legal guardian are considered residents.
It is important to note that living or attending school in Florida is not tantamount to establishing legal residence for tuition purposes. The applicant or claimant must still present acceptable proof of legal Florida residency prior to the start of the semester to be assessed in-state fees.
To be considered a “Florida Resident for tuition purposes” you must prove through official and/or legal documents that you or the claimant have established bona fide domicile in the state of Florida at least 12 months prior to the start of the term for which you seek in-state status.
No. Living near the state of Florida does not grant the student residency for tuition purposes or provide any discounted rate of tuition.
However, active duty military personnel and their dependents stationed within 50 miles of the Florida border may claim residency based on the official military orders. Official documentation is subject to evaluation and verification.
A signed letter from the employer, on letterhead, must provide proof of permanent full-time employment in Florida, for at least 30 hours a week for at least 12 months prior to the first day of classes for the term which residency is sought. If the claimant held more than one job during this time frame, a letter from each employer will be accepted for review. Additionally, paycheck or other payroll reports demonstrating the sufficient number of hours and the sufficient 12-month time period may be submitted for review.
Remember, a letter of employment may only serve as one form of Florida ID. Additional documentation will be required to substantiate the residency claim.
If an applicant qualifies for a statutory residency exception or qualification, then appropriate documentation must be submitted to evidence entitlement to that exception or qualification. Such evidence is generally specific to the type of residency exception or qualification being claimed by the applicant.
If an applicant does not qualify for a statutory residency exception or qualification and is not an "All-Florida" student, they will have to submit documentation that they (or a parent or legal guardian if a dependent) has been a Florida resident for at least 12 months prior to the first day of classes for which the student is enrolling. At least two of the following documents must be submitted, with dates that evidence the 12-month qualifying period. At least one of the documents must be from the First Tier. As some evidence is more persuasive than others, more than two may be requested. No single piece of documentation will be considered conclusive. Additionally, there must be an absence of information that contradicts the applicant's claim of residency.
First Tier (at least one of the two documents submitted must be from this list)
Second Tier (may be used in conjunction with one document from First Tier)
Examples of "other" documentation:
Unacceptable Documents (may not be used)
The evidentiary requirement for reclassification goes beyond that for an initial classification, because these individuals have previously been determined to be out-of-state residents. An individual who is initially classified as a nonresident for tuition purposes may become eligible for reclassification as a resident for tuition purposes only if that individual, or his or her parent if that individual is a dependent child, supports permanent residency in this state for 12 consecutive months. The individual, or his or her parent if that individual is a dependent child, must present documentation that substantiates residency in this state for the purpose of maintaining a bona fide domicile, rather than for the purpose of maintaining a mere temporary residence or abode incident to enrollment in an institution of higher education.
Therefore, the burden of proof is on the student to show: (1) residency in Florida for the requisite 12-month period; and (2) residency in the state was not merely temporary or incident to enrolling in a college or university located in Florida. Documentation for meeting the first requirement of reclassification is the same as for initial classification. Additional evidence or documentation may be required for meeting the second requirement of reclassification. Examples of evidence that may substantiate residency in this state for the purpose of maintaining a bona fide domicile may include: