Apply for in-state tuition
According to the North Carolina Statute, in order to establish residency for tuition purposes a student must:

  • Establish domicile (physical presence and intent to make North Carolina his/her permanent home for an indefinite duration) 12 months prior to the beginning of the term (1st day of classes);
  • Maintain that domicile for at least 12 consecutive months; and
  • Not be in North Carolina solely to attend college.

Establishing a domicile
To prove the first requirement for residency, a “preponderance of evidence” must be established, which includes a cluster of significant events demonstrating domicile (physical presence and intent to stay). This is subject to the final decision of the residency status committee. “Significant events” include things like:

  • Reporting when you physically come to NC (Where do you live and for how long?)
  • Showing that you made NC your domicile of indefinite duration outside the context of your academic program and its related activities (Where are/were you employed?; When/where did you serve on jury duty?; Where/when did you file tax returns?; When/where did you get your driver’s license? Where did you register/insure your car?; Where/when did you register to vote? Did you vote?; Where do you keep your personal property? How long has it been there?)
  • Listing other times you came to NC, and documenting events (dates/places) that led you to decide to establish your domicile in NC (Where/when did you spend vacation time?
  • Showing what have you done (documentable events) to make plans for your future in NC (Where/when did you spend vacation time?)
  • Other residency events (Do your parents claim you as a dependent? What are your sources of financial support?; Where/when do you maintain memberships in professional associations, civic groups, religious bodies or similar organizations?)

Some Common Mistakes

  • Student submits application for residency too early (the 12-month period begins once domicile and intent have been established
  • Student does not complete the residency application
  • The application is not filled out completely
  • Student does not provide accurate dates (this can have a significant effect on when the 12-month clock starts)

The Residency Status Committee will hear appeals, which provides an applicant a second chance to present new information not included on the original application. The committee when evaluates facts in the context of legal requirements to make decision


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