California Residency

The determination of residency for purposes of the CSU is not to determine if a student is a resident or non-resident in the state of California, but rather determine whether a student pays university fees on an in-state or out-of-state basis. Under California law, Stanislaus State must determine the residence status of all new and returning students.

The term "California resident" for tuition purposes may differ from other definitions of California residency. A person who has a California driver's license, vehicle registration, or who is a California resident for tax, voting, or welfare purposes may have established legal residence in the state but might not necessarily be considered a resident for tuition purposes. If determined to be a nonresident for tuition purposes, nonresident tuition will apply.

CSU Residency Questionnaire
Non-Resident Tuition Exemption Form (AB540)
Upload Residency Documents

California State University, Stanislaus Specialist can assist with Residency questions including classification and completion of forms. To schedule an appointment, please contact the Admissions department at (209)667-3152 or by email,

View information on our Western Undergraduate Exchange Program.

For the most up-to-date information on the requirements used for initial classification, visit the CSU Residency website:

To be classified a resident for tuition purposes, a student must show he/she has been a legal California resident for at least one year immediately prior to the Residence Determination Date, which are:

  • Fall semester: September 20
  • Spring semester: January 25

If necessary, evidence may be requested to prove the physical presence and intent to remain in California indefinitely. Acceptable evidence includes, but is not limited to:

  • A valid visa that allows you to establish residency, if not a US citizen
  • California voter registration and voting in California elections
  • California vehicle license plates and driver's license or I.D. card
  • California state income taxes being filed the previous year
  • Active California bank account
  • Employment (or proof of support for the past year) with copies of W-2 form(s)
  • Active membership in California professional or social organizations
  • A permanent military address and home of record in California
  • Mortgage/lease/rental agreement of a residence where permanent belongings are kept for at least a one year period.

There are exceptions to the general rules as well as exemptions established by law. Visit the CSU Residency website for more information.

Read more about AB 540/AB 2000 and the California Dream Act.

Non-resident applicants seeking reclassification are required to complete the Residency Questionnaire concerning their financial independence, which will be considered along with physical presence and intent during the reclassification review. Non-citizens establish residence in the same manner as citizens unless precluded by federal law from establishing domicile in the United States.

The Residency Questionnaire and all supporting documentation must be submitted prior to or during the term in which reclassification is requested.

If you believe an initial residency classification is incorrect, contact Enrollment Services during normal business hours at (209) 667-3152.

If you disagree with a final determination, you have the right to appeal. The final determination letter will have instructions to appeal to the Chancellor's Office within 30 calendar days. You can also find residency appeal information on the CSU residency website.

Updated: February 23, 2024