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All credit students must provide documentation that proves your residency status at the time of admission.

The amount of tuition you are charged is based on your residency classification, which is determined according to the information you submit. Find out more about tuition and residency in Paying for College.

The general residency classifications are as follows:

  • In District/County resident: A person currently residing in Dallas County who has lived in Texas for the past 12 months.
  • Out-of-district student: A Texas resident for the past 12 months who does not reside in Dallas County.
  • Out-of-state student: A U.S. citizen who has not lived in Texas for the past 12 months.
  • Out-of-country student: A non-U.S. citizen who is not a resident alien.

Your residency classification is based on rules and regulations established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. If you have questions about residency, contact your college Admissions/Registrar’s Office or visit the Coordinating Board website.

Texas Residency

The following criteria classifies a person as a Texas resident:

  • Graduated from a public high school, a home school or accredited private high school in the state of Texas. As an alternative to high school graduation, those who have received the equivalent of a high school diploma such as the General Equivalency Diploma (GED) in the state of Texas will also be classified as a Texas resident.
  • Maintained a residence continuously in Texas for the 36 consecutive months prior to graduation from high school or receipt of the GED, and continued presence in Texas for 12 consecutive months by the census date of the academic semester in which the person enrolled.
  • A student, or one whose parent, established a domicile and maintained a residence continuously in Texas for 12 consecutive months before the census date of the academic semester in which the person enrolled.

Important note: Be aware that Dallas County limits and Dallas city limits are NOT the same. It is entirely possible to live outside of Dallas County yet still have a Dallas city address.

Establishing Domicile

The following documents MAY be used to establish domicile in Texas:

  • A letter of employment on company letterhead stating the date of hire and full or part-time status and hours worked per week. Verification must be currently dated and include your name, date of birth, the last four digits of your social security number and be signed by an authorized agent of the company (human resources, manager, owner, etc).
  • Verification of residency classification from a Texas public college or university within the last 12 months (for spring or fall semester enrollment only).
  • A letter from one or more social service agencies in Texas that documents services were received for 12 consecutive months.
  • Ownership of homestead or business for 12 consecutive months.
  • Marriage to a Texas resident for at least 12 consecutive months (must provide marriage certificate, employment verification or two years' tax return transcript for spouse).

Establishing Residency

The following documents may be used to provide support to a claim of residence in Texas for at least 12 months before registration. Please note that this list is not exhaustive and that establishing residency is not the same as establishing domicile. It is entirely possible to establish residency without establishing domicile.

You must submit at least one of the following items with your application if you claim in-state status:

  1. A copy of your permanent (laminated) Texas driver’s license that is at least 12 months old
  2. A valid Texas voter registration card that is at least 12 months old  
  3. A copy of a lease agreement in your name or the name of a parent, if you are a dependent, for at least 12 months prior to registration
  4. A copy of your transcript from a Texas high school showing attendance or graduation within the past 12 months
  5. Canceled checks, bank statements or utility bills in your name covering each of the 12 months prior to registration
  6. Pay stubs for the 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the census date, reflecting significant gainful employment in Texas.  
  7. Other documentation that would prove residency in Texas for at least 12 months before registration

In-District Residency

Once your in-state residency status is established, your classification as in-district (Dallas County resident) or out-of-district is based on where you actually reside or own property.

If you are classified as a Texas resident and live in or own real estate in Dallas County, you are eligible for the in-district tuition rate. If you meet in-state requirements but live outside Dallas County, you will pay the out-of-district tuition rate. If you move outside Dallas County on or before a semester’s certification date, you must pay the additional tuition.

To establish in-district residency, you must present a permanent (laminated) Texas driver’s license in your name showing your correct Dallas County address or one of the following:

  1. A current lease agreement in your name at the correct Dallas County address
  2. A current Texas voter registration card listing your correct Dallas County address
  3. A current automobile registration showing your correct Dallas County address
  4. A copy of a current deed and/or property tax statement showing ownership of Dallas County property
  5. Printed checks showing your correct Dallas County address
  6. Business or official correspondence at your correct Dallas County address (utility bills, telephone bills, billing statements from department stores or credit agencies)

Foreign Nationals

Tuition is determined on an individual basis after your complete documentation is submitted and reviewed by the Admissions Office.

If you are a foreign national who has been granted permanent resident status that is not temporary and you have had your resident status for at least 12 months, you should follow the steps above to establish state residency. You must present your resident card with your application.

Minor/Dependent of a Texas Resident

If you are a minor, or are claimed as a dependent on your parent/legal guardian’s federal income tax, you may provide the information listed above in their name. You must also include a copy of the most recent federal income tax filed listing you as a dependent.