​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Residency Procedures

Deadlines​ | Residency Requirements​ | Financial Independence | Residency Determination Date | Documents Needed | Acceptable Proofs | Nonresidency Exemptions​ | Submitting Your Proofs | Residency Contacts​

Use this guide to determine if your nonresident status may be changed to resident status for tuition and fees purposes. ​

Deadlines to Submit Documentation to Prove Residency

  • Winter Session & Spring Semester: June 15 of that calendar year.

  • Summer Session & Fall Semester: December 15 of that calendar year.​

Residency Requirements​​​​

To establish residency, a student needs to meet the three conditions below, subject to verification by submitting required Proofs as noted in the "Acceptable Proofs of California Residence" section. The burden of proof to demonstrate legal staus, physical presence, and intent to establish residence in California is on the student (EC 68041).

  1. Legal Status that permits the establishment of domicile in the United States. Essentially, student must be a US Citizen, Permanent Resident, eligible Temporary Resident, hold eligible Visa, etc. Legal status must be sustained for at least one year plus one day prior to the start of the term. This date is known as the Residency Determination Date (Title 5 § 54045).​

  2. Physical presence is proved by being physically and continuously present in California for one year plus one day prior to the start of the term (the Residency Determination Date). (Title 5 § 54020 and § 54022).

  3. Intent is proven by providing evidence demonstrating intent to make California a permanent home of residence (see "Acceptable Proofs" section below). Taking any of these actions (not an exhaustive list) demonstrates a lack of intent to make California a permanent home of residence: filing taxes in another state as a resident of that state; filing for divorce or a lawsuit in another state; paying resident tuition in another state; voting in another state. Moving to California for educational purposes alone does not grant residency (Education Code, Section 68062(d)).​

​Financial Independence of Continuing Students 19 to 23 Years of Age

A student between 19 and 23 years of age who has been classified as a nonresident continuing student may request reclassification to resident status once the above three conditions have been met. A Residency Reclassification form must be completed, which requires the submission of documents demonstrating financial independence from parents or legal guardians (EC, Section 68044).​​

​Residency Determination Dates

  • For Winter 2018 Session: 01/01/2017
  • For Spring 2018 Semester: 02/11/2017
  • For Summer 2018 Session: 06/17/2017
  • For Fall 2018 Semester: 08/26/2017
  • For Winter 2019 Session: 01/01/2018
  • For Spring 201Semester: 02/10/2018​

​Documents Needed to Prove Residency

  • At minimum, two (2) proofs in your name or your parent's name if you are under the age of 19.
  • At least one proof must be a primary document (see below).
  • Proofs must be dated at least one year and one day before the start of the semester or session for which you are seeking resident status. However, proofs should be recent enough to show that you have been in California continuously.
  • Admissions & Records reserves the right to request additional proofs in instances when those presented do not sufficiently demonstrate legal status, physical presence, intent, financial independence (as relevant), and the "one year plus one day" requirement.  

Acceptable Proofs of California Residence

All proofs submitted for consideration must have been older than one year and one day prior to the Residency Determination Date, but in no case they should be dated beyond three (3) years. The

Primary Documents

​At minimum one proof from this list must be presented. The more you provide, the greater the likelihood you will be able to prove you are a resident. All documents must have a valid California physical address in the name of the student or parent/legal guardian (if student is under 19 years of age).

  • California Income Tax (Form 540, page 1-2 as submitted to the Franchise Tax Board) 
  • California Driver's License or California ID card or DMV printout
  • Military ID with Home of Record as CA (DD214 or LES)
  • California vehicle registration–California Registration Certificate
  • California voter's registration card 
  • Official license from California Department of Consumer Affairs for Business or Individual practice
  • California bank checking account savings statements showing a California mailing address documenting primarily transactions in California
  • Marriage license or divorce decree issued in California with a California mailing address
  • Paycheck stub or letter of employment verification on company letterhead with dates of employment noted (wet signature needed; signed by the Human Resources manager)
  • Receipt of benefits from a California state agency
  • Documentation of purchase and occupancy of residential real estate in California – loan papers, tax receipts, escrow paper

Secondary Documents

  • Selective Service registration showing California permanent address
  • California utility bills (e.g., electricity, phone, or water) covering a one-year period
  • California health insurance or Medi-Cal ID with effective date
  • Military discharge papers (DD214) or Leave and Earnings statement (indicating California as State of Record)
  • W2 form with a California home address--only if taxes not filed​
  • California property taxes
  • Union membership in a California local
  • California public library membership (verified by letter or printout with letterhead/branch stamp)

Unacceptable Proofs of Residency​

Examples include, bur are not limited to:

  • School transcripts, school registration, school ID, school housing contract
  • Driver's learner permit
  • Credit cards or credit statements
  • Declaration by a California school classifying the student as a resident
  • Affidavits indicating student's physical presence in the State
  • Rental receipts, personal mail, medical or dental bills
  • Lease Agreements or a letter from a landlord (manager) verifying tenancy

Nonresidency Exemptions

State law authorizes certain eligible students from paying nonresident tuition and fees. However, it does not grant students residence status. Details may be found on our Nonresidency Tuition Exceptions webpage.

Submit Proofs of Residency

  • Proofs for residency may be submitted in-person at the Admissions & Records Office. Bring copies.
  • You may also fax them to the attention of Residency Staff at 310-434-3645.
  • You may mail them to:

    Residency Staff
    Admissions & Records Office
    Santa Monica College
    1900 Pico Blvd.
    Santa Monica, CA 90405

  • You may also email your proofs to residency@smc.edu. Include your full name and Student ID number.
    • Proofs must be scanned and subm​​itted as a PDF document. Remove distracting background such as a hand. 
    • ​Use a free app such as Scannable (for iOS) or ClearScanner (for Android) to prepare a PDF.

Residency Contacts:

  • Sandra Franco: (310) 434-4461
  • Alma Nevarez: (310) 434-4595