UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH POLICY 09-05-04
CATEGORY: STUDENT AFFAIRS
SECTION: Tuition and Fees
SUBJECT: Pennsylvania Residency Classification: Eligibility for Reduced
EFFECTIVE DATE: July 23, 2015 Revised
This policy establishes the criteria by which students are classified as "residents" or
"non-residents" of Pennsylvania for the purpose of determining applicability of tuition
rates. It also provides information as to the requirements for appealing the residency
classification and applicable exemptions for certain military affiliated students.
Determination of Domicile
Domicile is the place where one intends to reside either permanently or indefinitely
and does in fact so reside. The presumptions and forms of evidence set forth in
this section shall be considered by the University in making the determination.
1. Continuous residence in this Commonwealth for a period of 12 months prior to
registration as a student at an institution of higher education in this
Commonwealth creates a presumption of domicile. A student is presumed not
to be a domiciliary if the student has resided for a shorter period before attending
an institution of higher education, but the student may rebut this presumption by
clear and convincing evidence.
2. Students who are not United States citizens, and have nonimmigrant visas or
lack visas, are presumed not to be domiciled in this Commonwealth. The only
way to overcome this presumption is to demonstrate that you are not a
nonimmigrant and are, in fact, an asylee, refugee, US Lawful Permanent Resident,
or that you have an approved I-140 or I-130 AND have a Form I-797 Receipt Notice
for the filing of the Form I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or
Adjust Status, and are otherwise in fact a domiciliary of Pennsylvania as described
3. A minor is presumed to have the domicile of his or her parents or legal guardian.
The age of majority for establishing a domicile for tuition purposes is 22. A minor
may prove financial emancipation and thereby prove Pennsylvania domicile through
clear and convincing evidence.
4. A student receiving a scholarship, loan or grant, dependent upon maintaining
domicile in a state other than Pennsylvania, is presumed to be domiciled in the
state from which he or she is receiving financial aid.
5. The following factors may be considered as evidence of domiciliary intention but
may be given weight that the finder of fact, given the circumstances of each case,
may assign to them:
(i) Lease or purchase of a permanent, independent residence within this
Commonwealth by the student.
(ii) Payment of appropriate State and local taxes. Special attention should be given
to payment of Pennsylvania taxes on income earned during periods of temporary
absence from this Commonwealth.
(iii) Transfer of bank accounts, stocks, automobiles and other registered property
to Pennsylvania from another state.
(iv) Procurement of a Pennsylvania driver’s license.
(v) Procurement of a Pennsylvania motor vehicle registration.
(vi) Agreement for permanent, full-time employment in this Commonwealth.
(vii) Membership in social, civic, political, athletic and religious organizations located
in this Commonwealth.
(viii) Registration to vote in this Commonwealth.
(ix) A sworn statement by the student or his/her parents or legal guardian in the
case of a minor declaring his/her intention to make this Commonwealth his/her
residence either permanently or for an indefinite period of time.
(x) A sworn statement from the parents or legal guardian of a minor setting forth
facts to establish the minor’s financial independence and separate residence.
Each case shall be decided on the basis of facts submitted, with qualitative rather than
quantitative emphasis. No given number of factors is required for domicile, since the
determination in each case is one of the subjective intentions and current objective
ability of the student to reside permanently or indefinitely in this Commonwealth.
Individuals, who meet the following qualifications, are eligible for reclassification to
Pennsylvania resident status for tuition billing purposes under Commonwealth of
Pennsylvania PL 1226, No. 287, as amended (the “Act”).
1. Any Veteran, his/her spouse, dependent children or any other individual who is eligible
to receive benefits under any of the following:
In addition, a child, a spouse or a surviving spouse who is eligible to receive benefits
under Chapter 35 (relating to survivors’ and dependents’ educational assistance)
qualifies for the resident tuition rate.
For purposes of the Act, a “Veteran” is any individual who served in the United States
Armed Forces, including a reserve component or National Guard, and who was
discharged or released from service under conditions other than dishonorable.
If you meet any of the above-listed requirements, please provide a copy of the
Servicemember’s DD214 and your Certificate of Eligibility from the VA.
2. Military personnel who are assigned to an active duty station in Pennsylvania and
who reside in Pennsylvania, and their spouses and dependent children. If you meet
this requirement, please provide a copy of the active duty member’s orders and a copy
of the first page of the most recent IRS Form 1040/1040A displaying the name of the
spouse or dependent child, if applicable.
3. Civilian personnel employed at a US Department of Defense facility who are transferred
to Pennsylvania by the US Department of Defense and who reside in Pennsylvania, and
their spouses and dependent children. If you meet this requirement, please provide a
letter from the US Department of Defense that documents the transfer to Pennsylvania
specifying the name of the person employed, the applicable US Department of Defense
facility in Pennsylvania, and the start date, along with a copy of the first page of the most
recent IRS Form 1040/1040A displaying the name of the spouse or dependent child,
1. Military affiliated students covered in Section II above should submit the documentation
as described in Paragraph (1), (2) or (3), as applicable, to the PA Residency
Coordinator at his/her campus in order to request reclassification.
2. All other students may challenge their non-resident classification by filing a written
petition with the PA Residency Coordinator at his/her campus. Contact
information for the appropriate office at each campus is listed here:
3. The PA Residency Coordinator shall consider the petition and render a decision in
accordance with the appeal procedures. Following that decision, a student may, within
30 days, inform the Student Appeals Office, G-12 Thackeray Hall, Pittsburgh, PA 15260,
(412) 624-7610 that he or she wishes to appeal to the University Appeals Committee.
After meeting, the Appeals Committee shall then deliberate and render a final decision.
4. Reclassification resulting from a student’s challenge shall be determined by the date
a petition for eligibility was filed with the Student Appeals Office. The deadline for
submitting a petition will be within the first 30 calendar days of that term (15 calendar
days of a session) in which the student wishes to be classified as a resident. A
petition filed after such date shall be determined to be effective for reclassification
purposes the first day of the following term or session. Unless otherwise
instructed, all requested documentation and information must be submitted
within 15 days of the date the request was made by the Student Appeals Office.
1. A student who changes his/her domicile from Pennsylvania to another state
must promptly give written notice to the PA Residency Coordinator at his/her
2. A student under 22 years of age must promptly give written notice of any change
in his/her parents' or legal guardian's address to the PA Residency Coordinator
at his/her campus.
Adjustments and False Information
Students who are found eligible for resident rates due to an error in classification are
subject to retroactive reclassification as non-residents and are responsible for the payment
of all related tuition and fees.
Students who are found eligible as a result of false or concealed facts are subject to
University discipline and legal action and are responsible for the payment of all non-resident
tuition and fees including legal fees.
The University reserves the right to periodically audit and make any necessary adjustments
in the classification of all students.