Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes

Determining your residency status is an important part of your application for admission at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Residency, as it relates to tuition, is different than establishing residency for other purposes. As a state institution, the University of Nebraska must abide by Nebraska State Legislature policy as determined by the University of Nebraska Board of Regents (B.R.-5.7.1). These regulations provide the basis upon which University leaders shall determine whether an individual qualifies as a Nebraska resident for tuition purposes. In some instances, it may be possible that an individual may qualify as a "resident" of Nebraska for one purpose (such as securing a Nebraska driver's license) and still not meet the standards established by the Board of Regents for in-state resident status. It should be noted that an individual who moves to Nebraska primarily to enroll in an institution of higher education of the state is presumed to be a nonresident for tuition purposes for the duration of his or her attendance at the University. An individual classified as a nonresident carries the burden of proof of eligibility for residency status when providing documentation to request resident tuition.

Once an individual has registered and attended an institution within the NU System (UNO, UNK, UNMC, UNL) or has attended a Nebraska State College (Chadron State, Peru State, or Wayne State) as a resident student, they will remain a resident for tuition purposes, provided the individual has a current domicile in Nebraska and is continuously enrolled. A residency application under Category I is required to grant residency for those attending a state college. Additionally, a dependent student whose parent, guardian or spouse then moves from the state shall not lose their resident status if they are continuously enrolled in the University system. If a student ends their enrollment, their residency status remains for two years, and after two years without enrollment, students will need to reapply for residency.

The only exception to this is if a student is applying as a Visiting Student—those students approved for residency will only be a resident for the term they are applying for, and they will need to apply for each term.

You are classified as a Nonresident at time of admission if:

  • You have not graduated from a Nebraska high school physically located in the state, or you are not a graduate of an accredited high school or an exempt school program in Nebraska.
  • You graduated with a GED (even if completed in Nebraska).
  • You moved to Nebraska primarily to enroll in a post-secondary institution.
    • You will be considered a nonresident for tuition purposes for the duration of your attendance, assuming you remain continuously enrolled.
  • You have not established a home in Nebraska for a minimum of 12 months prior to the term or semester for which residency is sought.
  • You have been enrolled at any Nebraska post-secondary institution full-time prior to the term or semester for which residency is sought.

Applying for Resident Tuition

A change in residency classification for tuition purposes is not granted automatically. Students classified as nonresidents may request reclassification by submitting a completed online application through their MyRed Account with the required supporting documentation. This application must include the affidavit of intent signed before a notary public attesting to the accuracy of information. If it is determined that information on an application or affidavit has been falsified, the applicant may be subject to disciplinary action(s) before the applicant is permitted to continue to enroll. Such actions will be determined on an individual basis and may include disciplinary probation, suspension, expulsion, or reimbursing the University for the difference between the tuition paid and the nonresident tuition rate.

When requesting residency for tuition purposes:

  • The applicant must be admitted to the University for the term in which residency is sought.
  • Current enrollment at an institution of higher education is considered in the review process and may preclude a student from receiving residency for tuition purposes.
  • Failure to enroll/register for the term for which residency is sought or taking a break from classes for more than two years will result in the cancellation of the residency application and any approved resident status.
  • Visiting Students must reapply for residency each term.
  • It is recommended that the applicant enroll in classes and pay any tuition while waiting for the residency application to be processed. This will enable the applicant to enroll in the classes needed to maintain progress in an academic program, as well as avoid late payment fees. The student is responsible for any late fees, regardless of the approval of residency status.

Residency Application Process

Nonresident students need to complete the online residency application and submit all required supporting documentation as soon as possible after admittance to UNL, but no later than the deadline date by term being sought.

  1. Students can access the Residency Application in your MyRED account. On the main menu, look for the "Profile" tab, hover over "Profile" and click on "Residency Application." Completing the questionnaire can help with the selection of a Residence Category, but is not required. The residency categories are listed below.
  2. Complete the Application for Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes and upload copies of required supporting documentation, including the notarized Affidavit of Intent, in an electronic format such as PDF. Review PDFs prior to submitting to ensure readable documents; non-readable documents will delay the decision. Submission of required documents does not guarantee that residency for tuition purposes will be granted. Multiple documents can be uploaded per scan.
  3. Submit the form with all required documentation prior to the term deadline. Residency can only be approved for a future or current term prior to that term's deadline. Applications cannot be back dated for past terms.
    Term Deadline
    Fall October 1
    Spring March 1
    Summer July 1
  4. Notifications about decisions or missing documentation will be sent to the applicant's preferred email on file. If the email states more documentation is needed, use the provided link in this email to upload any needed documentation. Applicants will have two more attempts to provide the required documentation, after the initial submission of your application and uploaded required documents. If requested document(s) are not all submitted by the third attempt, the application and supporting documents will be cancelled. Students will need will need to resubmit the residency application and all required supporting documents through your MyRED account. Paper copies sent in or brought to the Office of Admissions will not be accepted; all documentation must be uploaded to the online file.
  5. Residency application decision will not begin until all required supporting documentation has been received. Applications still missing items 60 days after submission will be voided. Applicants will be notified of a decision within 10 to 14 business days of submission of a complete application.
  6. Applicants should read all categories to choose the one that best fits the situation. Be aware that supporting documentation needs to be in either the applicant's or parent'(s)/guardian'(s) name.
  7. If you are granted residency, your scholarship and financial aid package will be re-evaluated as a Nebraska resident. Any scholarships or awards that were based on offsetting nonresident tuition will be removed as well as the non-resident Housing Credit.
  8. Appeals: Individuals who believe they have been incorrectly denied residency for tuition purposes may submit a letter of appeal and supporting documentation to ugrad_residency@unl.edu

Documentation

All applications must include a notarized Affidavit of Intent plus documents specific to the chosen category as described below. The University reserves the right to request additional documentation. For all documents, provide legible electronic copies. Submission of required documents does not guarantee that residency for tuition purposes will be granted. Please redact all social security numbers before submitting documentation.

Residency Categories

Category Documentation (in addition to Affidavit of Intent)
A. Legal Age Resident or Emancipated Minor:

An individual who has established a home in NE where they are habitually present and shall verify with documentation the intention to make NE their permanent place of residence. If you have been continuously enrolled at an institution of higher education in Nebraska in the last 12 months, approval under this category is unlikely.

  • Documentation I: Proof of an established home in NE for at least 12 months prior to term for which residency is sought in applicant's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in applicant's name.
  • Additional Documentation: If emancipated minor: A copy of parent'(s)/guardian'(s) most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) as proof that applicant is not a dependent. Does not need to be filed in NE.
B. Dependent Minor (less than 19 yrs. of age):

A minor whose parent/guardian has established a home in NE where they are habitually present with the bona fide intention of making NE their permanent place of residence.

  • Documentation I: Proof of current established home in NE in parent'(s)/guardian'(s) name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in parent'(s)/guardian'(s) name.
  • Additional Documentation: Copy of parent'(s)/guardian'(s) most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) showing the applicant is a dependent. Does not need to be filed in NE.
C. Legal Age Dependent (19 – 24 yrs. of age):

A person of legal age who has established a home in NE and is a dependent for Federal Income Tax purposes of a parent/guardian who has established a home in NE.

  • Documentation I: Proof of current established home in NE in parent'(s)/guardian'(s) name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in BOTH parent'(s)/guardian'(s) AND applicant's name. Each document will only count as one if provided by both parent'(s)/guardian'(s).
  • Additional Documentation: Copy of parent'(s)/guardian'(s) most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) showing the applicant is a dependent. Does not need to be filed in NE.
D. Married to a Nebraska Resident:

An individual who has married a resident of NE. Resident shall be required to verify residency prior to the marriage.

  • Documentation I: Proof of an established home in NE prior to date of marriage in Nebraska Resident's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in Nebraska resident's name.
  • Additional Documentation: Official marriage license or certificate (not decorative, commemorative copy).
E. Permanent Resident, Asylee or Refugee:

An individual who has become a permanent resident of the United States or has been granted Asylee or Refugee status.

  • Documentation I: Proof of an established home in NE for at least 12 months prior to term for which residency is sought in applicant's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in applicant's name.
  • Additional Documentation: Permanent Resident provide I-551; Asylee or Refugee Status provide I-94.
F. University/State College/NE Community College Employee or Dependent/Spouse:

At least .5 FTE staff member or dependent/spouse of staff member, of the University of NE, a NE state college, or NE community college.

  • Documentation I: Not Required
  • Documentation II: Not Required
  • Additional Documentation:
    • Letter from Human Resources verifying employment date, permanent status, and minimum 0.5 FTE.
    • If dependent: most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) showing the applicant is a dependent. Does not need to be filed in NE.
    • If qualifying by spouse: official marriage license or certificate (not decorative, commemorative copy).
G. Active Duty Military/NE National Guard Dependent or Spouse:

Active Duty Military, National Guard, or dependent/spouse, with the armed services of the U.S.A. who has been assigned to a duty station in NE or shows NE as Home of Record.

  • Documentation I: Not Required
  • Documentation II: Not Required
  • Additional Documentation:
    • Documentation from military personnel office indicating active duty with a permanent duty station in NE or NE as home of record.
    • If dependent: most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) showing the applicant is a dependent. Does not need to be filed in NE.
    • If qualifying by spouse: official marriage license or certificate (not decorative, commemorative copy).
H. Nebraska High School Graduate/Nebraska Dream Act:

A person who is a graduate of a Nebraska high school and who meets the requirements of Nebraska law found in Neb. Rev. Stat. §85-502(8).

  • Documentation I: Proof of current established home in NE in applicant's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in applicant's name.
  • Additional Documentation: Nebraska high school transcript or copy of diploma.
I. Former University/State College Resident Student:

An individual who has been enrolled at one of the University of NE or NE state colleges, as a resident for tuition purposes, and reenrolls within two years of the last date of enrollment.

  • Documentation I: Proof of current established home in NE in applicant's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in applicant's name.
  • Additional Documentation: Statement from NU Campus or State College indicating resident classification during attendance.
J. Native American:

An individual not residing in NE who is a member of a Native American tribe that is indigenous to or has historically migrated to/from NE.

  • Documentation I: Not Required
  • Documentation II: Not Required
  • Additional Documentation: Documentation attesting to affiliation with qualifying tribe. Tribal Enrollment card, Bureau of Indian Affairs document, Tribal Membership card, Certificate of Bloodline, etc. Qualifying tribes: Arapaho, Arikara, Cheyenne, Comanche, Crow, Dakota Sioux, Dhegihan, Hidatsa, Iowa, Jicarilla Apache, Kansa, Kickapoo, Kiowa, Lakota, Lakota Sioux, Mandan, Missouria, Nakota Sioux, Northern Cheyenne, Omaha, Osage, Otoe, Pawnee, Ponca, Potawatomie, Quapaw, Sac and Fox, Santee Sioux, Southern Cheyenne, Winnebago.
K. Recruited or Transferred Employee or Dependent/Spouse:

Individuals who, because of special talents and skills, were recruited/transferred for full-time employment by a business entity or a dependent/spouse.

  • Documentation I: Proof of current established home in NE in employee's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in employee's name.
  • Additional Documentation:
    • Letter from employer on company letterhead. Must include "recruited" or "transferred," date of employment, and permanent full-time employment status.
    • If dependent: most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) showing the applicant is a dependent. Does not need to be filed in NE.
    • If qualifying by spouse: official marriage license or certificate (not decorative, commemorative copy).
L. Nebraska High School Graduate Veteran:

A person who has served with the military who has been honorably discharged, is a graduate of a NE high school, and has established a home in NE with the intent to make NE a permanent residence.

  • Documentation I: Proof of current established home in NE in applicant's name.
  • Documentation II: Three (3) supporting documents in applicant's name.
  • Additional Documentation: Nebraska high school transcript or copy of diploma.
M. Military Veteran or Dependent/Spouse:

A person who has served in the military and, has been off active duty, or a dependent/spouse of such veteran, if the person is registered to vote in NE and demonstrates objective evidence of intent to be a resident of NE.

  • Documentation I: Not Required
  • Documentation II: Not Required
  • Additional Documentation:
    • Veteran's DD 214 – Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty Military.
    • If qualifying as dependent: most recent Federal Income Tax Return (deduction page only) showing the applicant is a dependent and any one (1) of the following (3) items in dependent's name: Nebraska driver's license, Nebraska ID card, or Nebraska vehicle registration (pink slip).
    • If qualifying as spouse: official marriage license or certificate (not decorative, commemorative copy) and any one (1) of the following (3) items in spouse's name: Nebraska driver's license, Nebraska ID card, or Nebraska vehicle registration (pink slip).
    • Documentation needed for Veteran: Veteran's voter registration card and any one (1) of the following (3) items in veteran's name: Nebraska driver's license, Nebraska ID card, or Nebraska vehicle registration (pink slip).

Based on University of Nebraska Board of Regents residency policy (RP-5.7 Tuition)