California Residence for Purposes of Tuition

UC Residence Policy and Guidelines

Regulations defining California residence for purposes of tuition and fees are exactly the same for all University of California campuses. The UC Residence Policy and Guidelines is provided by the Office of the President and promulgated by the Office of the General Counsel which is the final authority on residence policy for the UC system.

Residence Determination

The determination of residence for tuition purposes at the University of California is governed by the UC Residence Policy and Guidelines established by the UC Regents, and implemented by the UC President in consultation with the UC General Counsel.

Under the UC Residence Policy, adult citizens and certain classes of aliens can establish residence for tuition purposes. The presumption of Residence Deputies is that students and their parents have read and understand the UC Residence requirements prior to submitting their residence information for determination of residence for tuition purposes. Decisions on residence status are made after a student accepts an offer of admission to the University by submitting a Statement of Intent to Register and completes a Statement of Legal Residence.

Who Is A Resident?

Financial Independence


Financial Independence for purposes of tuition and fees is determined separately and may differ from Financial Independence as determined by the Financial Aid Office based on the FAFSA.

Students and parents are cautioned to read the information on this website regarding the UC Residence Policy which includes a Financial Independence and Self-Sufficiency requirement.

Admissions and Financial Aid definitions of resident also differ. They do not confer residence for purposes of tuition and fees.

All four requirements to establish California residence must be met to qualify:

  1. The adult student (at least 18 years of age) and parent must be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. Lawful Permanent Resident or other eligible immigrant, or an eligible non-immigrant.
  2. The adult student (at least 18 years of age) and parent must have been physically present in the state for 366 days prior to the first day of instruction (the UC Residence Determination Date) of the term for which he/she wishes to be considered a resident;
  3. And have demonstrated intent to make California his/her legal permanent home, as opposed to coming to California solely for the purpose of attending school.
  4. Students under the age of 24 must be financially dependent upon parents who meet the aforementioned requirements, or the student must meet the UC Residence Policy's financial independence requirement. Parent residence and financial independence are not a consideration for students age 24 or older.

For detailed information regarding each requirement, proceed to New and Prospective Students.

Contact a Residence Deputy

Students: Include your UC Davis Student ID number and full legal name in your email.

Parents and Others: Please include a contact telephone number in your email.

Residence Topics

This site introduces important information for prospective students, parents, transfer students, newly admitted students, and continuing UC Davis students regarding residence requirements, such as: residence determinations, intent, financial independence, specific rules that apply to the residence classification of minors, as well as, exemptions from nonresident supplemental tuition. Detailed information regarding, forms and instructions can be found under Processes and Important Dates.

This website is not a complete explanation of laws and rules regarding residence. Changes may be made in residence requirements between the publication of material on this site and the relevant Residence Determination Date. For questions not answered by information on this site, students may contact a campus Residence Deputy. Residence Deputies are the only UC Davis personnel authorized to provide information regarding residence requirements.


When students are under the age of 24, the residence of their living parents is considered when the student's residence is determined. Facts and information about parent history of lawful presence in the US, legal ties and physical presence in California are required within the Statement of Legal Residence (SLR) submitted by all newly admitted students, which forms the basis of their initial residence determinations made by campus Residence Deputies. Parent information and residence is also a factor in determining eligibility for exceptions to the UC Residence Policy and form the basis of most established exemptions from the Nonresident Supplemental Tuition. Students are able to submit information regarding special parent circumstances. Guardians, stepparents, foster parents and other relatives caring for students are cautioned to understand the UC Residence Policy's definition of parent for the purposes of tuition at least two years prior to the student's admission to UC Davis.

Transfer Students and Financial Independence

Transfer students who were classified as residents of California at their previous school should not assume that they will be classified as residents at the University of California. Prospective students planning to transfer to UC Davis from inside or outside of California are also cautioned to understand the UC Residence Policy defining Financial Independence prior to applying for admission to or attending UC Davis. If the student is an undergraduate under the age of 24 and is not dependent upon California-resident parent(s), the student must be able to demonstrate their own financial independence and complete self-support for two full years immediately prior to the term resident status is claimed. The financial independence requirement is very difficult to meet for most undergraduates whose parents are not California residents, including students who have attended community colleges or other post-secondary schools in California. It is unlikely that these students will qualify for classification as a resident.