Appendix A. Residency Regulations
Statute: Sec. 54.064(a) A student who holds a competitive scholarship of at least $1,000 for the academic year or summer for which the student is enrolled and who is either a nonresident or a citizen of a country other than the United States of America is entitled to pay the fees and charges required of Texas residents without regard to the length of time the student has resided in Texas. The student must compete with other students, including Texas residents, for the scholarship and the scholarship must be awarded by a scholarship committee officially recognized by the administration and be approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board under criteria developed by the board.
Sec. 54.064(b) The total number of students at an institution paying resident tuition under this section for a particular semester may not exceed 5 percent of the total number of students registered at the institution for the same semester of the preceding academic year.
Competitive scholarship recipients. To qualify for exemption from paying out-of-state tuition rates, a student must be awarded a competitive scholarship in the amount of $1,000 or more for the academic year, the summer session, or both by an official scholarship committee, or committees, of the public institution of higher education the student is attending. If nonresidents or foreign students, in competition with other students, including Texas residents, obtain these competitive scholarships, the students may pay the same tuition as a resident of Texas during the registration period in which these scholarships are in effect. At the time the competitive scholarship is awarded, the institution must designate the term or terms in which the scholarship will be in effect.
An institution will not waive nonresident tuition on the basis of competitive scholarships for more than 5 percent of its total enrollment in the corresponding semester or term of the previous academic year. If the recipient of the scholarship is concurrently enrolled at more than one institution, the waiver of nonresident tuition is only effective at the institution awarding the scholarship.
Statute: Sec. 54.057(a) An alien who is living in this country under a visa permitting permanent residence or who has filed with the proper federal immigration authorities a declaration of intention to become a citizen has the same privilege of qualifying for resident status for fee purposes under this act as has a citizen of the United States.
Sec. 54.057(b) A nonimmigrant alien who resides in this state in accordance with the agreement between the parties to the North Atlantic Treaty regarding the status of their forces (4 U.S.T. 1792) and the spouse or children of such an alien are residents for tuition and fee purposes under this code.
Eligible aliens. Aliens living in the United States under a visa permitting permanent residence, aliens who are permitted by Congress to adopt the United States as their domicile while they are in this country, and aliens who have filed with the proper federal immigration authority a declaration of intent to become a citizen of the United States have the same privilege of qualifying for Texas resident status for tuition purposes as do citizens of the United States. The Immigration and Naturalization Service has identified the following categories of foreign students as being eligible to establish domicile in the United States. However, if an individual provides proof from the U S Department of Justice or Immigration and Naturalization Service that the visa he or she holds has granted eligibility to establish a domicile in the United States, such individuals may be granted the same privileges in establishing Texas residency for tuition purposes: holders of visas with A-1, A-2, A-3, E-1, E-2, G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, G-5, H-1B, H-4 dependents of H-1B holders, I, K-1, K-2, L-1, L-2, NATO 6, NATO 7, O-1, O-3 dependents of O-1 holders, R-1, and R-2 classifications; and individuals classified by the Immigration and Naturalization Service as refugees, asylees, parolees, persons holding Temporary Protected Status, spouses and children with approved petitions under the Violence Against Women Act, special agriculture workers, conditional permanent residents holding I-551 cards that have not expired, temporary residents holding I-688 cards that have not expired, and persons holding I-485 status. A declaration of intent to become a citizen may only be filed by permanent residents, aliens holding I-688 cards that have not expired, aliens admitted as refugees, and aliens granted asylum. Students holding I-688A and I-688B cards are not eligible to establish domicile in the United States.
An individual who enters the state under a visa that does not allow the establishment of a domicile and who obtains permanent resident status while in Texas may not be reclassified for tuition purposes until he or she has been granted permanent resident status and has resided in Texas a minimum of twelve consecutive months from the date on which he or she applied for permanent resident status.
Family unity program. A noncitizen residing in Texas under the Immigration and Naturalization Service's (INS) Family Unity Program may qualify to pay the resident tuition rate. A noncitizen is eligible to apply for benefits under the Family Unity Program if he or she entered the United States on or before May 5, 1988, has been residing in the United States since that date and was the spouse or unmarried child of a legalized alien as of that date and continues to be so. An individual proving his or her eligibility should provide an institution two Immigration and Naturalization Service forms I-797, one which indicates an INS-approved "Application for Voluntary Departure under the Family Unity Program," and the other which must indicate either an INS-approved "Immigration Petition for Relative" or a "Visa Petition for Spouse." Since INS may cancel eligibility for the Family Unity Program at any time, higher educatIon institutions must confirm the student's current INS status each time he or she registers. To comply with the provisions of the Family Unity Program and qualify to pay resident tuition rates at Texas institutions, the parent or spouse must have established a domicile in the state of Texas.
NATO forces stationed in Texas. Nonresident aliens stationed in Texas in keeping with the agreement between the parties to the North Atlantic Treaty regarding status of forces, their spouses, and dependent children are entitled to pay the same tuition rate at public institutions of higher education as residents of Texas.
Statute: Sec.54.621(c) Notwithstanding section 54.052(d), the tuition and required fees charged by an institution of higher education for semester hours and fees that are paid for by a prepaid tuition contract shall be determined as if the beneficiary of that contract were a resident student.
The tuition and required fees charged by an institution of higher education for semester hours and fees that are paid for by a prepaid tuition contract shall be determined as if the beneficiary of that contract is a resident student. If a student is a nonresident, any tuition and fees not paid by the contract will be assessed at the nonresident rate.
Oath of residency. Sec. 54.0521, Texas Education Code, provides for an oath of residency. The student is responsible for registering under the proper residence classification and for providing documentation as required by the public institution of higher education. If there is any question as to right to classification as a resident of Texas it is the student's obligation, prior to or at the time of enrollment, to raise the question with the administrative officials of the institution in which he or she is enrolling for official determination. Students classified as Texas residents must affirm the correctness of that classification as a part of the admission procedure. If the student's classification as a resident becomes inappropriate for any reason, it is the responsibility of the student to notify the proper administrative officials at the institution. Failure to notify the institution constitutes a violation of the oath of residency and may result in disciplinary action.
Application for reclassification. Students classified as nonresident students will be considered to retain that status until they make written application for reclassification in the form prescribed by the institution and are officially reclassified in writing as residents of Texas by the proper administrative officers of the institution.
Reclassification as a nonresident. Persons who have been classified as residents of Texas will be reclassified as nonresident students whenever they report, or there is found to exist, circumstances indicating a change in residence to another state. If students who have been classified as residents of Texas are found to have been erroneously classified, those students will be reclassified as nonresidents and will be required to pay the difference between resident and nonresident tuition for those semesters in which they were erroneously classified.
Reclassification as a resident. If students have been erroneously classified as nonresident students and subsequently prove to the satisfaction of the appropriate officials of an institution of higher education that they should have been classified as resident students, they will be reclassified as residents of Texas and will be entitled to a refund of the difference between the resident and nonresident fees for the semesters in which they were erroneously classified. Normally, the refund must be requested and substantiated during the current term.
Statute: Sec. 54.053 The governing board of each institution required by this act to charge a nonresident tuition or registration fee is subject to the rules, regulations, and interpretations issued by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for the administration of the nonresident tuition provisions of this act. The rules, regulations, and interpretations promulgated by the Coordinating Board shall be furnished to the presidents or administrative heads of all Texas public senior and junior colleges and universities.
Sec. 54.061 The governing board of an institution of higher education may assess and collect from each nonresident student who fails to comply with the rules and regulations of the board concerning nonresident fees a penalty not to exceed $10 a semester.
Student compliance with institutional rules and regulations. Each public institution of higher education has been authorized by statute to assess and collect from nonresident students failing to comply with the provisions of the tuition statute and with these interpretations concerning nonresident fees a penalty not to exceed $10 a semester. In addition, if students have obtained residence classification by virtue of deliberate concealment of facts or misrepresentation of fact, they may be subject to appropriate disciplinary action in accordance with the rules and regulations that may be adopted by the governing boards of the respective institutions of higher education.
Effect of absence from the University. Every student returning to the University after an absence of more than one semester is required to file a residence questionnaire on a form available from the Office of Admissions.
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