Parents and Residency

10 Things Students Need to Know About Residence

UC Provides Policy Summaries for Undergraduate Students and Graduate or Professional School Students

Undergraduate Students

Graduate and Professional School Students

Glossary of Terms

  • Domicile
  • Foster Parents
  • Guardians
  • Indicia
  • Lawful Permanent Resident
  • Residence Determination Date
  • Stepparents
  • Visa

For definitions of terms used on this page, see the Glossary

Parents

When students are under the age of 24, the residence of their living natural or adoptive 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 Residence in California

The UC Residence Policy defines a California resident parent as a parent who has met all three of these requirements for residence for purposes of tuition and fees—Eligibility, Physical Presence and Intent. A parent accompanying a student to California who fails to relinquish all ties to the former residence does not meet the University’s requirements for residence for purposes of tuition and fees. For detailed information regarding each requirement proceed to New and Prospective Students. Parent information and residence is also a factor in determining eligibility for exceptions to the Financial Independence requirement, and form the basis of most exemptions from the Nonresident Supplemental Tuition.

Special Parent Circumstances. Students are able to submit information regarding special parent circumstances that may prevent them from providing parent residence information.

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.

Financial Independence and Parents

Student Age and Dependence

A student's age and the residence of the student's living natural or adoptive parents are included in the UC's Residence Policy as considerations in determining the student's residence for purposes of tuition and fees. Typically, students begin their attendance in post-secondary institutions at or near the time they are reaching the Age of Majority (age 18).

Age 24: As adults, students (both Undergraduates and Graduate or Professional Students) may be claimed as dependents for tax purposes until the age of 24. Students turning age 24 during the calendar year they are requesting resident classification will be considered age 24 the entire year from January 1 and not subject to the UC financial independence requirement.

Minors: The UC Residence Policy includes rules for determining the residence of Minors. The General Rule is: The residence of the parent with whom an unmarried minor (17 or under) lives is the residence of the unmarried minor. Where the residence of the minor is derived, the parent must satisfy the 366-day physical presence and intent requirements. If the minor does not live with either parent, his residence is that of the parent with whom he last lived, unless the minor has been self-supporting for more than one year, or the minor has been under the complete care and control of an adult or adults other than a parent for not less than two years.

Student Self-Support

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 prior to the quarter residence status is claimed.

Students considering self-support or claiming financial independence from their parents may include:

  • Students leaving the parent's household, or
  • Students seeking admission to UC from outside of California, or
  • High School Graduates beginning attendance at a CSU or a Community College in California in order to transfer to the University of California, or
  • Students considering living with relatives or other adults in California.

Parent-Based Exceptions from Financial Independence

The UC Residence Policy provides exceptions from the Financial Independence requirement under certain circumstances outlined in the policy under Financial Independence: Exceptions and described on this site under Financial Independence.

The financial independence requirement will not be a factor in residence determination if the student meets one of the following criteria:

  • Is financially dependent upon a California resident parent who meets the University's requirements for residence for tuition purposes.
  • The student reached the age of majority (18 years) in California while his/her parents were residents of California, and the parents leave the state to establish a residence elsewhere, and the student continues to reside in California after the parents’ departure.

Glossary

Domicile
The one location where a person is considered to have the most settled and permanent connection, the place where he intends to remain and to which, whenever temporarily absent, he has the intention of returning. A person can have only one domicile at a time. A parent accompanying a student to California who fails to relinquish all ties to the former residence does not meet the University’s requirements for residence for purposes of tuition and fees.

Foster Parents
A person who acts as parent and guardian for a child in place of the child's natural parents but without legally adopting the child. The exemption for Dependent or Ward of State through CA Child Welfare System (Foster Youth) includes court-appointed Foster Parents.

Guardians
A guardianship is a legal relationship created when a person or institution named in a will or assigned by the court to take care of minor children. Residence Deputies may request verification of court-appointed guardianship to determine whether the adult can be a considered in determining the student’s residence for tuition purposes. If a guardian is appointed for a minor after the death of his parents, the minor will take the residence of the guardian.

Indicia
Indications of intention. Legal and other ties of residence.

United States Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs)
Lawful permanent residents of the United States enjoy most of the same rights as United States citizens; namely, they are permitted to live and work in the United States, own property, attend public school and college and leave and return under certain conditions. Lawful permanent residents may acquire their status based upon a family relationship, an employment relationship, or any of the special immigration programs the United States government administers, such as the diversity visa program (Lottery), political asylum and amnesty.

Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR)—Green Card
Lawful permanent residents of the United States enjoy most of the same rights as United States citizens; namely, they are permitted to live and work in the United States, own property, attend public school and college and leave and return under certain conditions. Lawful permanent residents may acquire their status based upon a family relationship, an employment relationship, or any of the special immigration programs the United States government administers, such as the diversity visa program (Lottery), political asylum and amnesty.

Parent
The natural or adoptive father or mother or, if both parents are deceased, the legal guardian with whom the minor resides. The term “parent” does not include stepparents or foster parents, unless expressly noted.

Residence Determination Date
For quarter-based campuses at the University of California it is the day instruction begins at the last campus to open for the term. For semester-based campuses and schools, it is the day instruction begins at the Berkeley campus.

Visa
A travel document. A citizen of a foreign country who seeks to enter the United States (U.S.) generally must first obtain a U.S. visa, which is placed in the traveler’s passport, a travel document issued by the traveler’s country of citizenship. The type of visa you must obtain is defined by U.S. immigration law, and relates to the purpose of your travel. Certain Nonimmigrant Visas are eligible to establish residence for tuition purposes