Nonresident Tuition Exemptions
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California community colleges are an inexpensive way to attain a quality education. Non-resident students who live outside of California or internationally receive a phenomenal education, but are required to pay additional fees as their state and local taxes do not help subsidize their college tuition. You may be eligible for an exemption if you are a refugee student or are able to establish residency in Riverside County.
What is Residency?
The student must be physically present in the State of California for one (1) year prior to the start of the term for which he/she is applying or enrolling for. The one-year period begins when the student is not only present in California but also has demonstrated clear intent to become a permanent resident of California. Students will be required to provide proof of continuous presence in California for the past (12) months. This may be accomplished by providing a rental/lease agreement, utility bills, employment pay stubs, etc. for the past (12) months in the student's name.
Students must clearly verify intent to make California the permanent place of residency by (no one factor is controlling):
- Living in California for two consecutive years
- Paying California State tax as a resident
- Establishing and maintaining an active California bank account
- Registered to vote in the State of California
- Owning residential property
- Possessing a California Driver's License
Non-resident students that wish to change their status or students that feel they have been classified as non-residents in error will need to apply for re-classification of residency status. To change status, students must complete the Supplemental Residency Questionnaire Form and submit it along with supporting documentation to the Admissions & Records office; incomplete forms will not be accepted.
Supporting documentation consists of three proofs of residency demonstrating physical presence and intent. Two items must be dated at least one year and one day prior to the start of the term for which you are applying for. These items must not be older than two years prior to the start of the term. The third item must show that the student is currently a resident of California.
Examples of acceptable documentation are:
- California Driver's License
- A resident California Tax Form (540)
- California Vehicle Registration
- Rental/Lease agreement
- Bank Statement
Students that are in the United States with a visa that allows establishment of residency, must fulfill the one-year physical presence and intent requirements listed above. Students with a visa that precludes establishment of residency will be charged the California enrollment fee plus non-resident and out-of-country fees. Students with visa type B-1, B-2, F-1, F-2, J-1, J-2 must apply and enroll in the International Student Center.
Tuition Fee Exemptions
The State of California provides for students who have been granted special immigrant visas or were admitted to the United States as refugees the right to be exempt from paying non-resident tuition. Learn more by reading Assembly Bill AB 2210 and Article 6 “Exceptions to Residence Determination.”
International and Immigrant Students
AB540 is a California law that allows any student, including undocumented students, who meet specific requirements to be exempt from paying nonresident tuition at all public colleges and universities in California.
To qualify, you must:
- Meet at least one of these school attendance requirements:
- Have attended a California high school, adult school or California Community College for three or more years; or
- Attained credits earned in California from a California high school equivalent to three or more years of full-time high school coursework and attended a combination of elementary, middle and/or high schools in California for a total of three or more years; or
- Have attended or attained credits at any combination of California high school, California adult school, and/or California Community College (CCC) for the equivalent of 3 years or more.*
- Met at least one of these graduation requirements prior to or before your first term
of enrollment at the CCC:
- Have graduated or will graduate from a California high school with a diploma, attained a GED or have passed the California High School Proficiency exam; or
- Have completed or will complete an associate degree from a California Community College (before first term of enrollment at the CCC); or
- Have completed or will complete the minimum requirements for transfer to the California State University or the University of California.
- Register as an entering student at, or demonstrate current enrollment at, an accredited institution of higher education in California (California Community College, University of California, California State University).
- Be an alien student who is without lawful immigration status and file an affidavit with the college or university stating that you have filed an application to legalize your immigration status or will file an application as soon as eligible to do so.
You must file an exemption request including a signed affidavit with the college that indicates you have met all applicable conditions described above. Information obtained in this process is strictly confidential unless disclosure is required under law.
* A year’s equivalence at a California Community College is either a minimum of 24 semester units of credit or 36 quarter units. For noncredit courses, a year’s attendance is a minimum of 420 class hours per year (a semester is equivalent to a minimum of 210 hours and a quarter is equivalent to a minimum of 140 hours). Full-time attendance at a California adult school is a minimum of 420 hours of attendance for each school year.
Complete the form entitled California Nonresident Tuition Exemption Request. Submit it to the Admissions & Records office at the community college where you are enrolled or intend to enroll. You may be required to submit additional documentation. Call the college Admissions Office if you have questions.
- Become a Moreno Valley College student by applying online
- Complete the CA Nonresident Tuition Exemption Request Form
- Complete your matriculation/application process
- Apply for Financial Aid through the CA Dream Act or via scholarships
- Meet with your academic counselor
- Utilize resources through the MVC Dream Center
If you are eligible for this exemption and wish to transfer to another California public college or university, you will be required to submit a new request (and documentation if required) to each college under consideration.
A student with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) non-immigrant visa status is considered ineligible for these waivers. If you are a non-immigrant [for example, holding a F (student) visa, J or B (visitor) visa, etc.] you are not eligible for this exemption. As a non-resident student who meets the criteria above, you will be exempted from the payment of nonresident tuition, but they will not be classified as California residents. You will continue to be classified as a “non-resident."
US Citizen Non-California
If you are US citizen student presently residing in a foreign country, you may be exempt from nonresident tuition.
You must meet the following requirements:
- Demonstrate a financial need for the exemption.
- Have a parent or guardian who has been deported or was permitted to depart voluntarily under the federal Immigration and Nationality Act.
- Moved abroad as a result of deportation or voluntary departure.
- Lived in California immediately before moving abroad.
- Attended a public or private secondary school in California for three or more years.
- Upon enrollment, will be in your first academic year as a matriculated student in California public higher education.
- Will be living in California and file an affidavit with the community college stating you intend to establish residency in California as soon as possible.
- Documentation shall be provided by you, the student, as required by statute specified in Ed Code section 76140(a)(5).
Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) Holders and Refugee Students
Education Code section 68075.6 grants an immediate nonresident tuition fee exemption to eligible Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) holders and refugee students who settled in California upon entering the United States. This exemption is granted for one year from the date the student settled in California upon entering the United States.
The AB 2210 exemption applies to the following:
- Iraqi citizens or nationals (and their spouses and children) who were employed by or on behalf of the United States Government in Iraq (Pub.L. No. 110-181, § 1244)
- Afghan and Iraqi translators (and their spouses and children) who worked directly with the United States Armed Forces (Pub.L. No. 109-163, § 1059)
- Afghanistan nationals who were employed on behalf of the US government or in the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan (Pub.L. No. 111-8, § 602)
- Refugee students admitted to the United States under Section 1157 of Title 8 of the United States Code