February 24, 2020
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       Florida Senate - 2010                                    SB 2398
       
       
       
       By Senator Ring
       
       
       
       
       32-01886-10                                           20102398__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to determination of resident status
    3         for tuition purposes; amending s. 1009.21, F.S.;
    4         revising the definitions of “dependent child” and
    5         “parent”; revising residency requirements for certain
    6         dependent children; authorizing an institution of
    7         higher education to verify documentation of residency
    8         through electronic means under certain conditions;
    9         revising requirements relating to proof of employment
   10         in the state; providing for classification as
   11         residents for tuition purposes of certain individuals
   12         who have attended a Florida public high school and
   13         individuals who receive certain tuition exemptions or
   14         waivers; providing requirements for recognition of the
   15         classification of a student as a resident for tuition
   16         purposes by an institution to which a student may
   17         transfer; providing an effective date.
   18  
   19  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   20  
   21         Section 1. Section 1009.21, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   22  read:
   23         1009.21 Determination of resident status for tuition
   24  purposes.—Students shall be classified as residents or
   25  nonresidents for the purpose of assessing tuition in the Florida
   26  College System community colleges and the State University
   27  System universities.
   28         (1) As used in this section, the term:
   29         (a) “Dependent child” means any person, whether or not
   30  living with his or her parent, who is eligible to be claimed by
   31  his or her parent as a dependent under the federal income tax
   32  code. If a child provides more than 50 percent of the
   33  institutionally defined cost of attendance or if a child meets
   34  the criteria for independent status as established for federal
   35  financial aid purposes, the child may not be considered a
   36  dependent child.
   37         (b) “Initial enrollment” means the first day of class at an
   38  institution of higher education.
   39         (c) “Institution of higher education” means any community
   40  college as defined in s. 1000.21(3) or state university as
   41  defined in s. 1000.21(6).
   42         (d) “Legal resident” or “resident” means a person who has
   43  maintained his or her residence in this state for the preceding
   44  year, has purchased a home which is occupied by him or her as
   45  his or her residence, or has established a domicile in this
   46  state pursuant to s. 222.17.
   47         (e) “Nonresident for tuition purposes” means a person who
   48  does not qualify for the in-state tuition rate.
   49         (f) “Parent” means the natural or adoptive parent,
   50  stepparent, or legal guardian of a dependent child.
   51         (g) “Resident for tuition purposes” means a person who
   52  qualifies as provided in this section for the in-state tuition
   53  rate.
   54         (2)(a) To qualify as a resident for tuition purposes:
   55         1. A person or, if that person is a dependent child, his or
   56  her parent or parents must have established legal residence in
   57  this state and must have maintained legal residence in this
   58  state for at least 12 consecutive months immediately prior to
   59  his or her initial enrollment in an institution of higher
   60  education.
   61         2. Every applicant for admission to an institution of
   62  higher education shall be required to make a statement as to his
   63  or her length of residence in the state and, further, shall
   64  establish that his or her presence or, if the applicant is a
   65  dependent child, the presence of his or her parent or parents in
   66  the state currently is, and during the requisite 12-month
   67  qualifying period was, for the purpose of maintaining a bona
   68  fide domicile, rather than for the purpose of maintaining a mere
   69  temporary residence or abode incident to enrollment in an
   70  institution of higher education.
   71         (b) However, with respect to a dependent child living with
   72  an adult relative other than the child’s parent, such child may
   73  qualify as a resident for tuition purposes if the adult relative
   74  is a legal resident who has maintained legal residence in this
   75  state for at least 12 consecutive months immediately prior to
   76  the child’s initial enrollment in an institution of higher
   77  education, provided the child has resided continuously with such
   78  relative for the 4 5 years immediately prior to the child’s
   79  initial enrollment in an institution of higher education, during
   80  which time the adult relative has exercised day-to-day care,
   81  supervision, and control of the child.
   82         (c) The legal residence of a dependent child whose parents
   83  are divorced, separated, or otherwise living apart will be
   84  deemed to be this state if either parent is a legal resident of
   85  this state, regardless of which parent is entitled to claim, and
   86  does in fact claim, the minor as a dependent pursuant to federal
   87  individual income tax provisions.
   88         (3)(a) An individual shall not be classified as a resident
   89  for tuition purposes and, thus, shall not be eligible to receive
   90  the in-state tuition rate until he or she has provided such
   91  evidence related to legal residence and its duration or, if that
   92  individual is a dependent child, evidence of his or her parent’s
   93  legal residence and its duration, as may be required by law and
   94  by officials of the institution of higher education from which
   95  he or she seeks the in-state tuition rate.
   96         (b) Except as otherwise provided in this section, evidence
   97  of legal residence and its duration shall include clear and
   98  convincing documentation that residency in this state was for a
   99  minimum of 12 consecutive months prior to a student’s initial
  100  enrollment in an institution of higher education.
  101         (c) Each institution of higher education shall
  102  affirmatively determine that an applicant who has been granted
  103  admission to that institution as a Florida resident meets the
  104  residency requirements of this section at the time of initial
  105  enrollment. The residency determination must be documented by
  106  the submission of written or electronic verification that
  107  includes two or more of the documents identified in this
  108  paragraph. No single piece of evidence shall be conclusive for
  109  purposes of this paragraph. Where appropriate, an institution of
  110  higher education may verify documentation through electronic
  111  means if available state-maintained databases exist.
  112         1. The documents must include at least one of the
  113  following:
  114         a. A Florida voter’s registration card.
  115         b. A Florida driver’s license.
  116         c. A State of Florida identification card.
  117         d. A Florida vehicle registration.
  118         e. Proof of a permanent home in Florida which is occupied
  119  as a primary residence by the individual or by the individual’s
  120  parent if the individual is a dependent child.
  121         f. Proof of a homestead exemption in Florida.
  122         g. Transcripts from a Florida high school for multiple
  123  years if the Florida high school diploma or GED was earned
  124  within the last 12 months.
  125         h. Proof of permanent full-time employment in Florida for
  126  at least 30 hours per week for a 12-month period.
  127         2. The documents may include one or more of the following:
  128         a. A declaration of domicile in Florida.
  129         b. A Florida professional or occupational license.
  130         c. Florida incorporation.
  131         d. A document evidencing family ties in Florida.
  132         e. Proof of membership in a Florida-based charitable or
  133  professional organization.
  134         f. Any other documentation that supports the student’s
  135  request for resident status, including, but not limited to,
  136  utility bills and proof of 12 consecutive months of payments; a
  137  lease agreement and proof of 12 consecutive months of payments;
  138  or an official state, federal, or court document evidencing
  139  legal ties to Florida.
  140         (4) With respect to a dependent child, the legal residence
  141  of the dependent child’s parent or parents is prima facie
  142  evidence of the dependent child’s legal residence, which
  143  evidence may be reinforced or rebutted, relative to the age and
  144  general circumstances of the dependent child, by the other
  145  evidence of legal residence required of or presented by the
  146  dependent child. However, the legal residence of a dependent
  147  child’s parent or parents who are domiciled outside this state
  148  is not prima facie evidence of the dependent child’s legal
  149  residence if that dependent child has lived in this state for 4
  150  5 consecutive years prior to enrolling or reregistering at the
  151  institution of higher education at which resident status for
  152  tuition purposes is sought.
  153         (5) In making a domiciliary determination related to the
  154  classification of a person as a resident or nonresident for
  155  tuition purposes, the domicile of a married person, irrespective
  156  of sex, shall be determined, as in the case of an unmarried
  157  person, by reference to all relevant evidence of domiciliary
  158  intent. For the purposes of this section:
  159         (a) A person shall not be precluded from establishing or
  160  maintaining legal residence in this state and subsequently
  161  qualifying or continuing to qualify as a resident for tuition
  162  purposes solely by reason of marriage to a person domiciled
  163  outside this state, even when that person’s spouse continues to
  164  be domiciled outside of this state, provided such person
  165  maintains his or her legal residence in this state.
  166         (b) A person shall not be deemed to have established or
  167  maintained a legal residence in this state and subsequently to
  168  have qualified or continued to qualify as a resident for tuition
  169  purposes solely by reason of marriage to a person domiciled in
  170  this state.
  171         (c) In determining the domicile of a married person,
  172  irrespective of sex, the fact of the marriage and the place of
  173  domicile of such person’s spouse shall be deemed relevant
  174  evidence to be considered in ascertaining domiciliary intent.
  175         (6)(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, a
  176  person who is classified as a nonresident for tuition purposes
  177  may become eligible for reclassification as a resident for
  178  tuition purposes if that person or, if that person is a
  179  dependent child, his or her parent presents clear and convincing
  180  documentation that supports permanent legal residency in this
  181  state for at least 12 consecutive months rather than temporary
  182  residency for the purpose of pursuing an education, such as
  183  documentation of full-time permanent employment for the prior 12
  184  months or the purchase of a home in this state and residence
  185  therein for the prior 12 months while not enrolled in an
  186  institution of higher education.
  187         (b) If a person who is a dependent child and his or her
  188  parent move to this state while such child is a high school
  189  student and the child graduates from a high school in this
  190  state, the child may become eligible for reclassification as a
  191  resident for tuition purposes when the parent submits evidence
  192  that the parent qualifies for permanent residency.
  193         (c) If a person who is a dependent child and his or her
  194  parent move to this state after such child graduates from high
  195  school, the child may become eligible for reclassification as a
  196  resident for tuition purposes after the parent submits evidence
  197  that he or she has established legal residence in the state and
  198  has maintained legal residence in the state for at least 12
  199  consecutive months.
  200         (d) A person who is classified as a nonresident for tuition
  201  purposes and who marries a legal resident of the state or
  202  marries a person who becomes a legal resident of the state may,
  203  upon becoming a legal resident of the state, become eligible for
  204  reclassification as a resident for tuition purposes upon
  205  submitting evidence of his or her own legal residency in the
  206  state, evidence of his or her marriage to a person who is a
  207  legal resident of the state, and evidence of the spouse’s legal
  208  residence in the state for at least 12 consecutive months
  209  immediately preceding the application for reclassification.
  210         (7) A person shall not lose his or her resident status for
  211  tuition purposes solely by reason of serving, or, if such person
  212  is a dependent child, by reason of his or her parent’s or
  213  parents’ serving, in the Armed Forces outside this state.
  214         (8) A person who has been properly classified as a resident
  215  for tuition purposes but who, while enrolled in an institution
  216  of higher education in this state, loses his or her resident
  217  tuition status because the person or, if he or she is a
  218  dependent child, the person’s parent or parents establish
  219  domicile or legal residence elsewhere shall continue to enjoy
  220  the in-state tuition rate for a statutory grace period, which
  221  period shall be measured from the date on which the
  222  circumstances arose that culminated in the loss of resident
  223  tuition status and shall continue for 12 months. However, if the
  224  12-month grace period ends during a semester or academic term
  225  for which such former resident is enrolled, such grace period
  226  shall be extended to the end of that semester or academic term.
  227         (9) Any person who ceases to be enrolled at or who
  228  graduates from an institution of higher education while
  229  classified as a resident for tuition purposes and who
  230  subsequently abandons his or her domicile in this state shall be
  231  permitted to reenroll at an institution of higher education in
  232  this state as a resident for tuition purposes without the
  233  necessity of meeting the 12-month durational requirement of this
  234  section if that person has reestablished his or her domicile in
  235  this state within 12 months of such abandonment and continuously
  236  maintains the reestablished domicile during the period of
  237  enrollment. The benefit of this subsection shall not be accorded
  238  more than once to any one person.
  239         (10) The following persons shall be classified as residents
  240  for tuition purposes:
  241         (a) Active duty members of the Armed Services of the United
  242  States residing or stationed in this state, their spouses, and
  243  dependent children, and active drilling members of the Florida
  244  National Guard.
  245         (b) Active duty members of the Armed Services of the United
  246  States and their spouses and dependents attending a public
  247  community college or state university within 50 miles of the
  248  military establishment where they are stationed, if such
  249  military establishment is within a county contiguous to Florida.
  250         (c) United States citizens living on the Isthmus of Panama,
  251  who have completed 12 consecutive months of college work at the
  252  Florida State University Panama Canal Branch, and their spouses
  253  and dependent children.
  254         (d) Full-time instructional and administrative personnel
  255  employed by state public schools and institutions of higher
  256  education and their spouses and dependent children.
  257         (e) Students from Latin America and the Caribbean who
  258  receive scholarships from the federal or state government. Any
  259  student classified pursuant to this paragraph shall attend, on a
  260  full-time basis, a Florida institution of higher education.
  261         (f) Southern Regional Education Board’s Academic Common
  262  Market graduate students attending Florida’s state universities.
  263         (g) Full-time employees of state agencies or political
  264  subdivisions of the state when the student fees are paid by the
  265  state agency or political subdivision for the purpose of job
  266  related law enforcement or corrections training.
  267         (h) McKnight Doctoral Fellows and Finalists who are United
  268  States citizens.
  269         (i) United States citizens living outside the United States
  270  who are teaching at a Department of Defense Dependent School or
  271  in an American International School and who enroll in a graduate
  272  level education program which leads to a Florida teaching
  273  certificate.
  274         (j) Active duty members of the Canadian military residing
  275  or stationed in this state under the North American Air Defense
  276  (NORAD) agreement, and their spouses and dependent children,
  277  attending a community college or state university within 50
  278  miles of the military establishment where they are stationed.
  279         (k) Active duty members of a foreign nation’s military who
  280  are serving as liaison officers and are residing or stationed in
  281  this state, and their spouses and dependent children, attending
  282  a community college or state university within 50 miles of the
  283  military establishment where the foreign liaison officer is
  284  stationed.
  285         (l) Individuals who have attended a Florida public high
  286  school for 2 consecutive years immediately prior to high school
  287  graduation and who enroll in an institution of higher education
  288  within 12 months after graduating from a Florida public high
  289  school, if the individual:
  290         1. Is a United States citizen or an eligible alien; and
  291         2. Submits his or her high school transcript prior to
  292  initial enrollment.
  293  
  294  Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to prohibit a
  295  public or private high school graduate who does not meet the
  296  criteria of this paragraph from otherwise qualifying as a
  297  resident for tuition purposes under this section.
  298         (m) Individuals who receive a tuition exemption or waiver
  299  under s. 961.06(1)(b), s. 1009.25, or s. 1009.26.
  300         (11) The classification of a student as a resident for
  301  tuition purposes by an institution of higher education shall be
  302  recognized by other institutions of higher education to which
  303  the student may later seek admission if the student has attended
  304  the institution making the initial classification within the
  305  last 12 months and the residency classification is noted on the
  306  student’s transcript. Once a student has been classified as a
  307  resident for tuition purposes, institutions to which the student
  308  may transfer are not required to reevaluate the classification
  309  unless inconsistent information suggests that an erroneous
  310  classification was made or the student’s situation has changed.
  311         (12)(11) Each institution of higher education shall
  312  establish a residency appeal committee comprised of at least
  313  three members to consider student appeals of residency
  314  determinations, in accordance with the institution’s official
  315  appeal process. The residency appeal committee must render to
  316  the student the final residency determination in writing. The
  317  institution must advise the student of the reasons for the
  318  determination.
  319         (13)(12) The State Board of Education and the Board of
  320  Governors shall adopt rules to implement this section.
  321         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2010.

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