Classification as In-State for Law School Tuition Purposes
If you enroll in Georgia Law as a non-resident and you are an independent student, you may be classified as in-state for tuition purposes if you demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that you have abandoned your out-of-state domicile and have established a domicile and legal residence in Georgia.
Please note that there is no exact formula to ensure reclassification for independent students. Each case is evaluated according to its particular facts. The following actions, although not exhaustive or necessarily conclusive, support a claim for in-state status:
- Living in Georgia for at least 12 months immediately preceding the first day of classes in the term for which you seek in-state classification for tuition purposes.
- Remaining in Georgia during periods when not enrolled as a student. For law students, this means that your petition is stronger if you are able to stay in Georgia for the summer after your first year of law school. If you accept summer legal employment outside of Georgia, you are not automatically disqualified from being granted in-state status if, looking at all of the facts and circumstances, it is still clear that you intend to make Georgia your permanent home.
- Showing that you are an independent student and demonstrating financial independence by relying on sources of financial support from within the state of Georgia for more than 50% of your total cost of attendance. For 2014-2015, the cost of attendance is $52,810 for nonresidents. Scholarships, including Tuition Equalization Scholarships and Tuition Reduction Scholarships, and law student loans in your name are independent financial support within the state of Georgia for purposes of determining legal residency. Financial support from someone outside of Georgia, from loans based on the credit of others or from trust funds created by others for your support are not normally included as independent financial support.
- Paying income and property taxes as a Georgia resident, including taxes on income earned outside of Georgia. You are not an independent student and, except in rare cases, will not be able to establish Georgia residency if you are claimed as income tax deduction by your parents or any other individual for the tax year preceding the term for which you are requesting resident classification.
- Obtaining a Georgia driver’s license and registering your vehicle in Georgia at least 12 months prior to the first day of classes for the term in which you seek in-state classification for tuition purposes.
- Registering to vote in Georgia.
- Opening a bank or savings account in Georgia in your name. (i.e. not a joint account with someone out-of-state)
- Leasing or purchasing living quarters in Georgia in your name.
Petition for Classification as In-State
Law students who intend to remain in Georgia upon completion of their legal studies should complete and submit a Petition for Classification as In-State for Tuition Purposes. The petition should be submitted to the School of Law Admissions Office by July 1 for the fall semester and November 1 for the spring semester.
If your petition for classification as in-state is denied, you may appeal to the Residency Appeals Committee at the address below. Your appeal must be received within thirty days from the date of the denial notification. Include a copy of your denial letter as well as a postal address, telephone number, and/or email address at which you may be reached. You should clearly state why you believe this decision is incorrect and attach any additional information you wish the committee to consider when it reviews this determination.
Residency Appeals Committee/UGA/102 Lustrat House/Athens, GA 30602-1693. Fax: 706.542.3248
Following administrative review and/or hearing, the Residency Appeals Committee will make a recommendation to the President who will review the Committee’s findings and recommendations, decide the case, and communicate his decision to you by letter. The President’s decision in residency matters is final. The School of Law Admissions Office will not be able to assist you in the appeal process. Should you have questions, please call the Residency Appeals Committee at 706.542.0006.
* In-state classification for tuition purposes is governed by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia. The information contained in this web page is for students at the School of Law only. It is subject to change. Refer to the Board of Regents Policy Manual for current complete information regarding Georgia residency for tuition purposes at the University of Georgia.