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All students are welcome at Tacoma Community College regardless of their residency status. The Admissions Department is available to provide guidance regarding your residency status and tuition rate at Tacoma Communiy College. Our office is here to help you navigate the rules and requirements set by the state of Washington. 

Tacoma Community College follows the residency policies that are set by the state of Washington and are applied throughout Washington’s colleges and universities. Original residency determinations are made based on the students’ responses to the citizenship and residency questions on the admissions application.  

Eligibility for Washington Resident Tuition

There are many ways a student can qualify for resident tuition. Students' eligibility for resident tuition depends on 1) Their citizenship or immigration status AND 2) establishing a bona fide domicile in the state of Washington for 12 months prior to the start of the quarter.  

Examples of eligible statuses 

  • U.S. citizens and U.S. nationals (American Samoa, Swains Island, Northern Mariana Islands) 
  • Permanent Residents (green card) 
  • Students with an unexpired Employment Authorization Document 
  • Refugees, asylees, TPS (Temporary Protected Status), or Withholding of Removal 
  • Students with current or expired DACA status
  • Students with T or U visa status
  • Students with PRUCOL (Permanently Residing Under the Color of Law) status
  • Other qualifying visas 

Establishing domicile in Washington

  • Domicile (As defined by WSAC) – “A legal term used to describe a person’s true, fixed, and permanent home. A person can only have one legal domicile in the U.S. at a time. To establish a domicile in Washington, a student must prove physical presence in the state plus intent to permanently remain in the state.” 
  • Individuals must provide documentation showing they meet the guidelines to establish WA state domicile: 
    • Physically reside in the state for at least 12 months prior to the first day of the quarter students are seeking a residency review. 
    • Relinquish all valid legal ties with their former state or country of residence. 
    • Create legal ties to the state of Washington. 
      • Common examples of establishing legal ties: 
        • Driver’s license or state ID
        • Vehicle registration
        • Voter registration
        • Establishing a bank account in WA
        • Lease or home agreement 
        • Employment in WA 

Residency Deadlines

Applications to change residency status will be accepted up to the 30th calendar day following the first day of the instruction of the quarter for which application is made. Applications made after that date in any quarter shall be considered for the following quarter. If non-resident tuition was paid and the request was approved, the difference in tuition will be refunded.

Winter 2024: February 1, 2024

Spring 2024: April 30, 2024

Summer 2024: July 23, 2024


Financial Independence 

  • Individuals are considered “financially independent” if they meet the following criteria for the current and previous calendar years (January – December):
    • Were not claimed as a dependent on someone’s tax return
    • Did not receive significant financial assistance from parents, relatives, legal guardians, or others (excluding spouse)
  • For students who are financially independent, we must determine if the students have established domicile in the state of WA. Students may be asked to provide documentation to prove financial independence. 
  • For students who are financially dependent upon their parent(s) or legal guardian(s), we must determine if the parent(s) or guardian(s) have established domicile in the state of WA. 

Non-Resident on Waiver (Out of State)

U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and students who meet the exception to the definition of nonresident may qualify for the non-resident on waiver tuition rate.

The waiver is applied during the admission application process or upon residency review. 

Non-Resident (Undetermined), Running Start and Transitional Studies

If student residency status is Non-Resident (Undetermined), including Running Start and Transitional Studies students, submit the Undetermined Residency Form


Military Personnel - Veterans and Active Duty

Active duty military, Washington National Guard members, and their spouses and dependents qualify as residents for tuition purposes. The student's (or sponsor's) military orders and military ID or DD-214 must be submitted to Admissions in Bldg. 8 or emailed to

Washington State Higher Residency Affidavit 

Residency Affidavit allows eligible students to pay in-state tuition at Washington state colleges and universities. For more information visit this website. To qualify for resident tuition status, students must complete the Washington State Higher Education Residency Affidavit  if they have met the following conditions:

  • Earn a high school diploma, GED, or diploma equivalent before your first term at the college determining residency, and
  • Maintain a primary residence in Washington for at least 12 consecutive months immediately before your first term at the college determining residency. The Washington residence must be for
    purposes other than college. If you take any courses at another Washington college during the prior 12 months, you cannot have taken more than six credits in any given term. If you exceed that limit you must prove that you have a Washington residence for non-college reasons.

If the above criteria has been met, the student may complete the Washington State Higher Education Residency Affidavit and submit the completed form to or in Bldg. 8.


Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that individuals who came to the United States as children and meet several guidelines may request consideration of deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal. They are also eligible for work authorization. Deferred action is a use of prosecutorial discretion to defer removal action against an individual for a certain period of time. Deferred action does not provide lawful status.

DACA on its own does not qualify for in-state tuition. If a student has been approved for DACA, they will need to submit official documentation to or to Admissions in Building 8. 

Examples of Factors that Can Determine Students Not Eligible for Resident Status

  • Out of state driver's license
  • Out of state Vehicle Registration
  • Receiving financial assistance from another state's government in the past year

Residency Forms

Tuition Rate and Fees

Tuition & Payment

Any Other Questions?

Call Entry Services: Admissions for additional residency information.


Or email