Residency Information

An individual must establish legal residency in New Mexico before he or she is entitled to pay in-state tuition rates.

The New Mexico Department of Higher Education establishes residency requirements for tuition purposes (view their page here). These requirements apply to US citizens and those who have applied for or received Permanent Resident status (see additional information on non-citizens below).

A student is classified as a resident or non-resident for tuition purposes based on information supplied on the admissions application.

Am I eligible for residency for in-state tuition purposes?
There are four basic residency requirements:
  • 12 Months Consecutive Residence

A student must physically reside in New Mexico for 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the term for which classification is requested.

Note: A student must be at least 19 years old to establish residency apart from parents or guardians.

  • Financial Independence

A student cannot be approved for residency, when they are financially dependent upon their parents or legal guardians who are non-residents of New Mexico.

A minor's residence is presumed to be the same as his/her parents' or legal guardian's.

  • Written Declaration of Intent

This declaration of intent is included on the Petition for In-State Residency Form.

  • Overt Acts
Residency regulations require the completion of at least two overt acts which support the student's declaration of intent to become a permanent resident.
  • Copy of parents or guardians' previous year federal income tax (only if applicant is financially dependent)
  • NM high school transcript confirming attendance within the past 12 months
  • NM drivers license or ID card issued prior to the first day of the term
  • Proof of payment of NM state income tax for the previous year
  • Evidence of employment in NM
  • NM vehicle registration issued prior to the first day of the term
  • NM voter registration issued prior to the first day of the term
  • Proof of residential property ownership in NM
  • Rental agreement in NM
  • Utility bill in NM
  • Other  evidence which would reasonably support the individual's intent to establish and maintain NM residency (as determined by NMJC Registrar)


How do I petition for New Mexico residency for tuition purposes?

Students who would like to petition to change their residency classification should complete the Petition for In-State Tuition Classification. Once the petition form is completed, it needs to be submitted to the NMJC Registrar's Office.

The deadline to file a residency petition is the Friday prior to the beginning of each semester. Once the semester has begun, residency classification can not be changed for that semester.

What if I am a non-US citizen?

Non-citizens who are lawfully in the United States and have applied for or obtained permanent status from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services , or non-citizens who serve on active duty in the armed forces of the United States, may establish residency by meeting the durational and intent requirements.

Any non-citizens on other visas (student, diplomatic, visitor or visiting scholar visa, including spouses and dependents) are non-residents for tuition purposes.

Any person who attended high school in New Mexico for at least one year and received a High School diploma or High School Equivalency Credential such as a GED from a NM institution regardless of immigration status may establish residency.


A brochure detailing residency requirements and restrictions is available above, under forms. Or you can get a physical copy at the NMJC Help Desk.


Help Desk

Elizabeth Aranda

Registrar Assistant