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Nonresident supplemental tuition exemptions (including AB 540)

In some cases, students are classified as nonresidents, but are not charged nonresident supplemental tuition. The most common of these exemptions and waivers are:

AB 540 and California Dream Act

Under California law AB 540, certain nonresident students are exempt from paying nonresident supplemental tuition. There are two ways you can be eligible for an AB 540 exemption:

  1. You attended high school in California for three* or more years and graduated (or will graduate) from a California high school (or attained the equivalent).

    OR

  2.  As of January 1, 2015, you’ve successfully completed three years of California high school academic credit in fewer than three years (you have 2 years’ worth of full-time units), provided you can document having been enrolled in school in California for at least three academic years during K-12 grades.

For both options, you must also have signed the California Nonresident Exemption Request, which states that you meet all the requirements to qualify for AB 540 status and, if you are undocumented, are in the process of adjusting your immigration status (or will do so as soon as you are eligible). You also must not be a nonimmigrant as defined by federal immigration law.

T or U visa holders

Students who possess a T or U nonimmigrant visa but would otherwise meet the requirements of Section AB 540 (Cal. Ed. Code § 68130.5) are exempt from paying nonresident tuition until they are eligible to establish resident classification.

Spouse, registered domestic partner, or child of deceased law enforcement officer or firefighter

A student who is a child, spouse, or registered domestic partner of a deceased law enforcement officer or firefighter who, at the time of death, was a resident of California, may be entitled to a waiver from Nonresident Supplemental Tuition.

Veterans

Beginning July 1, 2015, veterans and their eligible dependents who are nonresidents of California may be eligible for a nonresident tuition exemption at UC if they meet these two criteria:

  1. They must be able to produce the DD214 form that indicates their separation, retirement or discharge from active duty within 36 months of the date they are seeking the tuition exemption.
  2. They must be receiving education benefits under Chapter 30 or 33 of the GI bill.

Other exceptions to residence regulations

Dependent of a California resident parent (Condit Bill)

A student who is a dependent child of a California resident parent (if the parent has been a resident for more than one year immediately before the residence determination date) may be entitled to resident classification until they have resided in California for the minimum time necessary to become a resident (as long as the student maintains continuous attendance at an educational institution).

Foster youth

A student who resides in California and is 19 years of age or under at the time of enrollment, who is currently a dependent or ward of the state through California’s child welfare system, and is no longer being served either due to emancipation or aging out of the system, is entitled to a resident classification so long as they remain continuously enrolled.


*As of January 1, 2015, you may be eligible for AB 540 if you are a UC nonresident student who has successfully completed three years of high school academic credit in fewer than three years, provided you can document having been enrolled in school in California for at least three academic years during K-12 enrollment.

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