UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH POLICY 09-05-04
CATEGORY: STUDENT AFFAIRS
SECTION: Tuition and Fees
SUBJECT: Pennsylvania Residency Classification: Eligibility for Reduced
EFFECTIVE DATE: May 10, 2018 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 the exemptions for certain military affiliated students.
Domicile is the place where one resides, or intends to reside permanently or indefinitely
and does in fact so reside. In making a determination of domicile, the University takes
into account the presumptions and documentary evidence set forth below.
1. Students who are not United States citizens and have nonimmigrant visas or lack
visas are presumed not to be domiciled in this Commonwealth. To overcome this
presumption, the student must demonstrate that he or she is otherwise a domiciliary
of Pennsylvania as explained in (2) and (3) below, AND
a. Is an asylee, refugee, or US Lawful Permanent Resident (green card holder), OR
b. Has an approved I-140 or I-130 AND Form I-797 Receipt Notice for the filing of the
Form I-485, OR
c. Has an approved I-140 or I-130 AND evidence to support that he or she intends,
but is currently unable to file a Form I-485 because he or she does not have a
current priority date as determined by the most recent U.S Department of State
Visa Bulletin. Please refer to the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Citizen and
Immigration Services for further information about determining your priority dates.
As explained in those resources, a person’s priority date is determined by the
specific category of permanent residency applied for, and the country of
chargeability, which is based on the primary applicant’s country of birth.
Accordingly, to provide sufficient evidence under this category, students need to
i. Demonstrate the student’s country of birth, in most cases, by submitting a
copy of the passport identification page and, if the student is under the age
of 22, that page for the student’s parents, AND
ii. Provide a copy of the approved I-140 or I-130.
2. 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.
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
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 University, given the circumstances of each case, may assign
a. Lease or purchase of a permanent, independent residence within this Commonwealth
by the student.
b. 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.
c. Transfer of bank accounts, stocks, automobiles and other registered property to
Pennsylvania from another state.
d. Procurement of a Pennsylvania driver’s license.
e. Procurement of a Pennsylvania motor vehicle registration.
f. Agreement for permanent, full-time employment in this Commonwealth.
g. Membership in social, civic, political, athletic and religious organizations located in this
h. Registration to vote in this Commonwealth.
i. 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.
j. 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.
6. Military Affiliation: Individuals who meet at least one of the following qualifications are
eligible for Pennsylvania resident status for tuition billing purposes under Commonwealth
of Pennsylvania PL 1226, No. 287, as amended (the “Act”).
a. 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 Service
Member’s DD214 and your Certificate of Eligibility from the VA.
b. 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.
c. 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, if
1. Students who are not United States citizens and have nonimmigrant visas or lack visas, but
who meet the requirements described in Paragraph (1) above, should submit the applicable
documents to the PA Residency Coordinator at his/her campus to request reclassification.
2. Military affiliated students covered in the Paragraph (6) above should submit the documentation
described in paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of that section, as applicable, to the PA Residency
Coordinator at his/her campus to request reclassification.
3. 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:
a. 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.
b. 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, all requested documentation and information must be
submitted 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 campus.
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 in the classification
of all students.