Residency Requirements

**Please note there are new changes to these rules.**

Classification of Students for Tuition Purposes

Arizona Revised Statutes: Section §15-1801

  • See acceptable documentation for residency status verification here.


Definitions: In this article, unless the context otherwise requires:

  1. Armed forces of the United States” means the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the Marine Corps, the Coast Guard, the commissioned corps of the United States Public Health Services, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Guard and any military reserve unit of any branch of the armed forces of the United States.
  2. Continuous attendance” means enrollment at an educational institution in this state as a full-time student, as such term is defined by the governing body of the educational institution, for a normal academic year since the beginning of the period for which continuous attendance is claimed. Such person need not attend summer sessions or any other intersession beyond the normal academic year in order to maintain continuous attendance.
  3. Domicile” means a person’s true, fixed and permanent home and place of habitation. It is the place where he intends to remain and to which he expects to return when he leaves without intending to establish a new domicile elsewhere.
  4. Emancipated person” means a person who is neither under a legal duty of service to his parent nor entitled to the support of such parent under the laws of this state.
  5. Parent” means a person’s father or mother, or if one parent has custody, that parent, or if there is no surviving parent or the whereabouts of the parents are unknown, then a guardian of an unemancipated person if there are not circumstances indicating that such guardianship was created primarily for the purpose of conferring the status of an in-state student on such unemancipated person.


Arizona Revised Statutes: Section §15-1802

In-state Student Status

  1. Except as otherwise provided in this article no person having a domicile elsewhere than in this state is eligible for classification as an in-state student for tuition purposes.
  2. A person is not entitled to classification as an in-state student until the person is domiciled in this state for one year, except that a person whose domicile is in this state is entitled to classification as an in-state student if the person meets one of the following requirements:
    1. The person’s parent’s domicile is in this state and the parent is entitled to claim the person as an exemption for state and federal tax purposes.
    2. The person is an employee of an employer that transferred the person to this state for employment purposes or the person is the spouse of such employee.
    3. The person is an employee of a school district in this state and is under contract to teach on a full-time basis or is employed as a full-time noncertified classroom aide at a school within that school district. For purposes of this paragraph, the person is eligible for classification as an in-state student only for courses necessary to complete the requirements for certification by the state board of education to teach in a school district in this state. No member of the person’s family is eligible for classification as an in-state student if the person is eligible for classification as an in-state student pursuant to this paragraph, unless the family member is otherwise eligible for classification as an in-state student pursuant to this section.
    4. The person's spouse has established domicile in this state for at least one year and has demonstrated intent and financial independence and is entitled to claim the student as an exemption for state and federal tax purposes or the person's spouse was temporarily out of state for educational purposes, but maintained a domicile in this state. If the person is a noncitizen, the person must be in an eligible visa status pursuant to federal law to classify as an in-state student for tuition purposes.
  3. The domicile of an unemancipated person is that of such person’s parent.
  4. Any unemancipated person who remains in this state when the person’s parent, who had been domiciled in this state, removes from this state is entitled to classification as an in-state student until attainment of the degree for which currently enrolled, as long as the person maintains continuous attendance.
  5. A person who is a member of the armed forces of the United States and who is stationed in this state pursuant to military orders or who is the spouse or a dependent child as defined in section 43-1001 of a person who is a member of the armed forces of the United States and who is stationed in this state pursuant to military orders is entitled to classification as an in-state student. A spouse or a dependent child does not lose in-state student classification under this subsection if the spouse or dependent child qualifies for in-state tuition classification at the time the spouse or dependent child is accepted for admission to a community college under the jurisdiction of a community college district governing board or a university under the jurisdiction of the Arizona board of regents.The student, while in continuous attendance toward the degree for which currently enrolled, does not lose in-state student classification.
  6. A person who is a member of the armed forces of the United States or the spouse or a dependent as defined in section 43-1001 of a member of the armed forces of the United States is entitled to classification as an in-state student if the member of the armed forces has claimed this state as the person’s state of legal residence for at least twelve (12) consecutive months before the member of the armed forces, spouse or dependent enrolls in a university under the jurisdiction of the Arizona board of regents or a community college under the jurisdiction of a community college district governing board. For purposes of this subsection, the requirement that a person be domiciled in this state for one year before enrollment to qualify for in-state student classification does not apply.
  7. Beginning in the fall semester of 2011, a person who is honorably discharged from the armed forces of the United States on either active duty or reserve or national guard status, or who has retired from active duty or reserve or national guard status, shall be granted immediate classification as an in-state student on honorable discharge from the armed forces and, while in continuous attendance toward the degree for which currently enrolled, does not lose in-state student classification if the person has met the following requirements:
    1. Registered to vote in this state.
    2. Demonstrated objective evidence of intent to be a resident of Arizona which, for the purposes of this section, includes at least one of the following:
      1. An Arizona driver license.
      2. Arizona motor vehicle registration.
      3. Employment history in Arizona.
      4. Transfer of major banking services to Arizona.
      5. Change of permanent address on all pertinent records.
      6. Other materials of whatever kind or source relevant to domicile or residency status.
  8. A person who is a member of an Indian tribe recognized by the United States Department of the Interior whose reservation land lies in this state and extends into another state and who is a resident of the reservation is entitled to classification as an in-state student.