Chapter VII: Admissions and General Information
Residency Regulations of the University
Information on Residency Classification for Admission and Tuition Purposes
The governing board at each university in Michigan has the authority to determine residency classification guidelines for admission and tuition purposes. Therefore, residency guidelines may vary from school to school and are independent of guidelines used by other state authorities to determine residency for purposes such as income and property tax liability, driving and voting.
The following guidelines were approved by the University of Michigan's Board of Regents to take effect Spring Term 1998 and to apply to students at all campuses of the University of Michigan. The guidelines are administered by the Residency Classification Office in the Office of the Registrar at the Ann Arbor campus, 1514 LSA Building, 500 South State Street, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1382. (734) 764-1400
The Student's Responsibilities and the Residency Application Process
It is the student's responsibility to read the University Residency Classification Guidelines contained in this document and to apply for admission and register under the proper residency classification. It is also the student's responsibility to file an Application for Resident Classification for an official determination of status. Students are encouraged to consult with staff in the Residency Classification Office if they have questions or need assistance.
The admissions offices at the various schools and colleges within the University perform the initial screening for residency classification. If a student indicates Michigan resident status on the admissions application and the admissions office questions that status, the student will be classified as a nonresident and notified of the need to file an Application for Resident Classification with the Residency Classification Office. The fact that a student's claim to residency for University purposes is questioned does not necessarily mean that he or she will be ineligible; it simply means that the student's circumstances must be documented and reviewed by the Residency Classification Office. Failure on the part of admissions staff to question a student's claim to resident eligibility does not relieve the student of the responsibility to apply and register under the proper residency classification. Furthermore, the University reserves the right to audit enrolled or prospective students at any time with regard to eligibility for resident classification and to reclassify students who are registered under an improper residency classification.
Until an Application for Resident Classification is filed and approved, a student who previously attended any campus of the University of Michigan as a nonresident will continue to be classified as a nonresident at all campuses.
Upon application for admission to any campus of the University, an individual who claims eligibility for resident classification must file an Application for Resident Classification for an official determination of status if any of the following circumstances apply:
- the individual is living out of state at the time of application
to the University
- either parent is living out of state (applies if the individual
is 24 years of age or younger)
- the individual has attended or graduated from an out-of-state
high school (applies if the individual is 24 years of age or
- the individual has attended or graduated from an out-of-state
high school and has been involved in educational pursuits for
the majority of time since graduation from high school
- the individual has had out-of-state employment or domicile
within the last 3 years
The above list is not exhaustive. An individual is responsible for filing an Application for Resident Classification in any situation where the individual's eligibility for residency under these Guidelines could be reasonably questioned.
Students may apply for resident classification for any term in which they are enrolled or intend to enroll. The deadline dates for filing the Application for Resident Classification are the same for all University of Michigan schools, colleges and campuses.* The following dates apply to the term for which residency is sought. If the deadline falls on a weekend, it will be extended to the next business day.
For all Spring, Spring/Summer, and Summer Terms
(*For the On Job/On Campus program, filing deadlines are 30 calendar days after the first scheduled day of classes.)
[Note: Applications must be received in the Residency Classification Office by the filing deadline.]
Documentation Which Must Be Included When Filing for Resident Classification
When filing an Application for Resident Classification, the following documentation must be included with the Application form:
- for all applicants: a copy of the driver's license
of the applicant and of the person or persons upon whom the applicant
is basing the claim to resident eligibility
- for all applicants: copies of the front and signature
pages of the most recent year's federal and state income tax
returns and W2s for the applicant and the person or persons upon
whom the applicant is basing the claim to resident eligibility
- or applicants born outside the U.S.: verification
of U.S. citizenship or visa status
- for applicants who are dependents: (see Residency
Classification Guideline B-1), copies of the front and signature
pages of the parents' most recent year's federal and state income
- for applicants whose claim to eligibility for resident
classification is based on permanent, full-time employment for
themselves, a parent, spouse or domestic partner: a letter
from the employer, written on letterhead (including phone number),
stating the position, status and dates of employment. The letter
should be accompanied by a copy of the most recent pay stub showing
Michigan taxes being withheld.
Applicants are also responsible for providing any other documentation necessary to support their claim to resident eligibility. Additional documentation may be requested by the Residency Classification Office.
If an Application for Resident Classification is denied by the Residency Classification Office, the student may request that his or her file be reviewed by the University's Residency Appeal Committee. The appeal request must be made in writing and must be received in the Residency Classification Office within 30 calendar days of the date on the denial letter. If the deadline falls on a weekend or University holiday, it will be extended to the next business day.
All contact with the Residency Appeal Committee must be in writing. Personal contact with a member of the Committee prior to the meeting could disqualify the member from participating in the decision. A student who wishes the Committee to consider additional information must submit the information to the Residency Classification Office, in writing, with the appeal request. The information will then be forwarded to the Residency Appeal Committee with the student's file.
The student will receive a written decision from the Committee when the review is complete. Once the Residency Appeal Committee issues its decision there are no further appeals for the term covered by the application.
Misrepresentation and Falsification of Information
Applicants who provide false or misleading information or who intentionally omit relevant information in an application for admission, an Application for Resident Classification or any other document relevant to residency eligibility may be subject to legal or disciplinary measures. Students improperly classified as residents based on this type of information will have their residency classification changed and may be retroactively charged nonresident tuition for the period of time they were improperly classified.
Residency Classification Guidelines
For University purposes, "domicile" is defined as the place where an individual intends his/her true, fixed and permanent home and principal establishment to be, and to which the individual intends to return whenever he or she is absent. These Guidelines are designed to explain how a student may demonstrate the required intent and establishment of a domicile in Michigan. An individual whose activities and circumstances, as documented to the University, demonstrate that he or she intends to be domiciled in Michigan and has, in fact, established a domicile in Michigan will be eligible for classification as a resident. An individual whose presence in the state is based on activities or circumstances that are indeterminate or temporary, such as (but not limited to) educational pursuits, will be presumed not to be domiciled in Michigan and will be classified as a nonresident. The burden of proof is on the applicant to demonstrate with clear and convincing evidence that he or she is eligible for resident classification under these Guidelines.
These Guidelines describe situations that create presumptions of resident and nonresident status. The fact that a presumption of resident status may apply to a student does not mean that the student will automatically be classified as a resident or that the student is relieved of the responsibility for filing an Application for Resident Classification. (See The Student's Responsibilities and the Residency Application Process.) To overcome a presumption of nonresident status, a student must file a residency application and document with clear and convincing evidence that a Michigan domicile has been established.
A. General Guidelines
- Circumstances which may demonstrate permanent domicile
The following circumstances and activities, though
not conclusive or exhaustive, may lend support to a claim
to eligibility for resident classification:
- both parents (in the case of divorce, one parent) permanently
domiciled in Michigan as demonstrated by permanent employment,
establishment of a household and severance of out of state ties
- applicant employed in the state in a full-time, permanent
position provided that the applicant's employment is the primary
purpose for the applicant's presence in Michigan
- spouse or domestic partner employed in the state in a full-time,
permanent position provided that the spouse's or partner's employment
is the primary purpose for the student's presence in Michigan
- Circumstances which do not demonstrate permanent domicile
The circumstances and activities listed below are
temporary or indeterminate and, in and of themselves, do not
demonstrate permanent domicile:
- enrollment in high school, community college or university
- participation in a medical residency program, fellowship
- employment that is temporary or short-term
- military assignment
- employment in a position normally held by a student
- ownership of property
- presence of relatives (other than parents)
- possession of a Michigan driver's license or voter's registration
- payment of Michigan income or property taxes
- the applicant's statement of intent to be domiciled in Michigan
- One year continuous presence
In cases where it is determined that an applicant has not demonstrated establishment of a domicile in Michigan as defined by these Guidelines, the University will require the applicant to document one year of continuous physical presence in the state as one of the criteria for determining eligibility for resident classification in any subsequent Application for Resident Classification. The year to be documented will be the one year immediately preceding the first day of classes of the term in question. The year of continuous presence is never the only criterion used for determining resident eligibility, and, in itself, will not qualify a student for resident status. If substantial and new information arises which changes the circumstances of a student's presence in Michigan and which clearly demonstrates the establishment of a Michigan domicile, the student may be immediately eligible for resident classification prior to the passage of one year.
In documenting the year of continuous physical presence in Michigan, the applicant will be expected to show actual physical presence by means of enrollment, employment, in-person financial transactions, health care appointments, etc. Having a lease or a permanent address in the state does not, in itself, qualify as physical presence. Short-term absences (summer vacation of 21 days or less, spring break and break between fall and winter term), in and of themselves, will not jeopardize compliance with the one year requirement. In determining the effect of a short term absence, the nature of the absence will be assessed to determine whether it is contrary to an intent to be domiciled in Michigan. Absences from the state in excess of the time mentioned above or failure to document physical presence at the beginning and end of the year will be considered as noncompliance with the one-year continuous presence requirement.
B. Residency Presumptions In Particular Circumstances
The fact that a presumption of resident status may apply to a student does not mean that the student will automatically be classified as a resident or that the student is relieved of the responsibility for filing an Application for Resident Classification. (See The Student's Responsibilities and the Residency Application Process.)
1. Dependent Students
For University residency classification purposes, a student is presumed to be a dependent of his or her parents if the student is 24 years of age or younger and (1) has been primarily involved in educational pursuits, or (2) has not been entirely financially self-supporting through employment.
i. Dependent Student - Parents in Michigan
A dependent student whose parents are, according
to University Residency Classification Guidelines, domiciled
in Michigan is presumed to be eligible for resident classification
for University purposes as long as the student has not taken
steps to establish a domicile outside of Michigan or any other
action inconsistent with maintaining a domicile in Michigan.
ii. Dependent Student of Divorced Parents - One
Parent in Michigan
A dependent student whose parents are divorced
is presumed to be eligible for resident classification for University
purposes if one parent is, according to University Residency
Classification Guidelines, domiciled in Michigan. The student
must not have taken steps to establish an independent domicile
outside of Michigan or any other action inconsistent with maintaining
a domicile in Michigan.
iii. Dependent Resident Student Whose Parents Leave
A student who is living in Michigan and who is,
by University Residency Classification Guidelines, permanently
domiciled in Michigan does not lose resident status if the parents
leave Michigan, provided: (1) that the student has completed
at least the junior year of high school prior to the parents'
departure, (2) that the student remains in Michigan, enrolled
as a full-time student in high school or an institution of higher
education, and (3) that the student has not taken steps to establish
a domicile outside Michigan or any other action inconsistent
with maintaining a domicile in Michigan.
Dependent Student - Parents not in Michigan
A dependent student whose parents are domiciled
outside the state of Michigan is presumed to be a nonresident
for University purposes.
2. Michigan Residents and Absences From the State
Individuals who have been domiciled in Michigan according to University Residency Classification Guidelines immediately preceding certain types of absences from the state may retain their eligibility for resident classification under the conditions listed below:
a. One Year Absence
An individual who has been domiciled in Michigan
immediately preceding an absence from the state of less than
one year may return to the University as a resident for admission
and tuition purposes provided: (1) that the individual has maintained
significant ties to the state during his or her absence, and
(2) that the individual severs out of state ties upon returning
b. Absence for Active Duty Military Service
(Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard), Missionary Work,
Peace Corps or Similar Philanthropic Work
An individual who is domiciled in Michigan at the
time of entry into active military duty, missionary work, Peace
Corps or similar philanthropic work does not lose eligibility
for resident classification as long as he or she is on continuous
active duty and continuously claims Michigan as the state of
legal residence for income tax purposes. Dependent children of
such an individual are also eligible for resident classification,
provided: (1) that they are coming to the University directly
from high school or they have been continuously enrolled in college
since graduating from high school, and (2) that they have not
claimed residency for tuition purposes elsewhere.
c. Absence for Education or Training
An individual who is domiciled in Michigan immediately
preceding an absence from the state for full-time enrollment
in school or for a medical residency program, internship or fellowship
does not lose eligibility for resident classification provided:
(1) that the individual has maintained significant ties to the
state during his or her absence (e.g., parents still
in the state, payment of state taxes, active business accounts),
and (2) that the individual has not claimed residency for tuition
3. Residence Status of Immigrants and Aliens
Only persons who are entitled to reside permanently in the United States may be eligible for resident classification at the University. These individuals, like U.S. citizens, must still prove that they have established a Michigan domicile as defined in these Guidelines. Having the privilege of remaining permanently in the United States, in itself, does not entitle a person to resident classification for University purposes. The Residency Classification Office will review the circumstances of the following classes of immigrants:
* Permanent Resident Aliens (must be fully
processed and possess Permanent Resident Alien card or stamp
in passport verifying final approval by filing deadline for applicable
* Refugees (I-94 card must designate "Refugee")
* A, E (primary), G and I visa holders*
(*Based upon current law, these nonimmigrant visa
classifications are the only ones that permit the visa holder
to establish a domicile in the United States. The University
Registrar shall update this list as changes occur in applicable
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