Proving that you are a resident of the state of Florida isn’t as difficult as you might think. There are a few simple conditions that have to be met, then you can take advantage of reduced, in state tuition and various grants and scholarships available only to Florida residents.
According to the 2010 Florida statutes, to qualify as a resident for tuition purposes you have a few choices. Meet any of these standards and resident tuition is yours.
1) Have you lived in the state of Florida for at least 12 consecutive months prior to enrollment, (the first day of class)? Or if you are a dependant child, have your parents lived in this state for at least 12 months? If the answer to either of these two questions is yes, then you have met Florida residency requirements.
2) If you are a child living with an adult relative, then that relative will have to prove that they have been in Florida for 12 consecutive months prior to enrollment. This is only if you have lived with your relative for the 5 years immediately prior to the first day of classes, and that relative has been supervising you the whole time.
3) If your parents are not living together and one has lived in the state of Florida for the past 12 consecutive months you can claim residency. It does not matter which parent has the right to claim you, or has actually claimed you on their income tax, or which parent you have spent your previous school years with.
4) Active duty members of the armed services, their spouses and children are eligible for in state tuition if attending a college within 50 miles of the military establishment where they are stationed. Also if you have been serving outside the state in the military, or your parents have been, you will not loose your resident status for tuition purposes.
You will have to fill out a form stating that either you or your parents have lived in the state for the previous year. Some proof will also be required, and Florida will also want to make sure that this was the primary state of residence, not just a summer home. Check with your college to find out what they will accept in the way of proof.
For a complete listing of residency requirements go to the state of Florida’s statutes website.
Just like anything else associated with college, proving you are a Florida resident will take a bit of time and effort, but the money you will save by qualifying for in state tuition makes it well worth it.