The following drop down menu has been designed for you to easily navigate questions regarding residency.

UNM is supported by the General Fund of the State of New Mexico, and residents of the state contribute to it with their state taxes.  As non-resident students (and their families) have not contributed to the Fund, they are required to pay tuition at a higher rate.

In general, you must:  

  • Be financially independent,
  • Be 19 years of age,
  • Live in New Mexico for 12 consecutive months prior to the beginning of the semester in which you petition,
  • Meet the overt acts required to support an intent to become a New Mexico resident.

The Admissions Office determines your residency when you are admitted, or readmitted, based on information you supply on your application for admission.  This residency status remains in effect until you either: 

  1. Satisfy the requirements for residency, and petition for resident classification for tuition purposes, or
  2. Lose residency by your absence from New Mexico, or by exercising rights as a citizen of another state.

No.  It is your responsibility to file the petition for residency after you meet all requirements.

You are considered a minor under New Mexico law, if you are under 18.  As a minor, your residency is presumed to be the same as your parents or legal guardian.  If your parents or guardian are residents of another state, you are a non-resident for tuition purposes.

As a minor with a non-custodial parent (one you don’t normally live with) who is a resident of New Mexico, your classification is resident.

Until you are 18 your residency is presumed to be the same as that of your parents or legal guardians.  When you turn 18, you may then begin to establish 12-month physical presence.

In general, you must meet the following basic requirements before the first day of classes:

  • The 12-Month Consecutive Presence Requirement:  You must physically reside in New Mexico for the 12 months immediately preceding the term in which you request resident classification.  You cannot begin to establish the 12-month physical presence requirement until your 18th birthday.
    Consecutive physical presence may be proven by rental agreement(s) covering a 12 month period, unofficial transcripts from New Mexico colleges or universities where you have been enrolled for a 12 month period, or evidence of employment in New Mexico for a 12 month period.

  • The Financial Independence Requirement:  If you are under the age of 23 at the time you petition for residency, you must be financially independent of parents or legal guardians who are not residents of New Mexico.  In other words, your parents or guardians may not have claimed you as a dependent in the previous tax year.

If you are petitioning for residency in a Spring semester, your parents or guardian must complete the Dependency Affidavit stating their intention to claim/not claim you when filing taxes for the prior tax year. The Affidavit must be submitted with your residency petition and supporting documentation.  A copy of your parents' or guardian’s 1040 Federal tax form must then be submitted in mid-April to complete your petition.

  • The Written Declaration of Intent Requirement:  You must sign a written declaration of intent to relinquish residency in any other state and to establish residency in New Mexico (part of the Petition for In-Sate Tuition Classification).

             By signing your residency petition, you are relinquishing residency in any other state.

  • The Overt Acts Requirement:  New Mexico requires the completion of several overt acts to support your written declaration of intent to become a resident for tuition purposes.

             Documentation of two of the following overt acts must be submitted with your petition for residency:

  Note:  Although only two acts must be documented, any act considered inconsistent with New Mexico residency,     e.g. voter registration in another state, holding and/or maintaining a driver’s license in another state, holding and/or maintaining a motor vehicle registration in another state, or paying in-state tuition at a college or university in another state, will cause your request for resident classification to be denied.

 1)  If financially dependent, a copy of your parents or guardians’ previous year income tax form showing you as a dependent, and your parents’ address as New Mexico;

2)  A New Mexico high school transcript issued in the past year confirming attendance at a New Mexico public or private high school within the past 12 months;

3)  A transcript from an on-line high school showing a New Mexico address confirming your attendance within the past 12 months;

4)  A New Mexico driver’s license or ID card with an original date of issue, or a renewal date prior to the first day of the term;

5)  Proof of payment of New Mexico state income tax for the previous year;

6)  Evidence of employment within the state of New Mexico;

7)  New Mexico vehicle registration;

8) New Mexico voter registration;

9)  Proof of residential property ownership in New Mexico;

10) A rental agreement within New Mexico;

11) Utility bills showing the applicant name and a New Mexico address;

12) Other evidence which would reasonably support a claim to establish and maintain New Mexico residency.

Yes.  Special tuition status waivers are available for some groups of people. These waivers allow eligible students to be billed at in-state tuition rates, although they are out-of-state residents for tuition purposes.


A member of an Indian nation, tribe or pueblo that is located wholly or partially in New Mexico, regardless of the residence of the member prior to acceptance, is charged at resident rates. Evidence of membership must be presented no later than the third Friday of the term.


Non-resident members of the armed forces of the United States while stationed on active duty within New Mexico, their spouses and dependent children. Submit the Active Duty Military Waiver form to the Office of Admissions no later than the third Friday of the semester.


All veterans, separated or retired, regardless of point of separation or State of residence, while using the GI Bill Benefit. The waiver is for use while attending in residence in New Mexico. It applies to those who have received any type of discharge other than “dishonorable”. Submit a copy of DD214 to the Office of Admissions no later than the third Friday of the term to receive the waiver.


An active member of the National Guard and member’s spouse and dependent children. Available to all NG status, Active Duty (Title X), State Call-up (Title 32) and Drilling Status. Submit the Active Duty Military Waiver to the Office of Admissions no later than the third Friday of the term.


Dependents of Active Duty, or National Guard on Title X orders, whose sponsor is stationed outside of New Mexico. Submit a Letter of Intent to Establish New Mexico Residency, with copies of New Mexico driver’s license, New Mexico voter registration, New Mexico vehicle registration (if dependent has a vehicle titled in his/her name), and a Defense Eligibility Enrollment System (DEERs) DD 1172 to the Office of Admissions no later than the third Friday of the term.

Dependents whose sponsor lost his/her life while on active duty (not restricted to combat related loss of life), providing the dependents move to New Mexico within 60 days of the date of death, provide evidence of that move, and copy of the Notification of Death. Documentation must be submitted to the Office of Admissions no later than the third Friday of the term to receive the waiver.

A spouse or child of an active member of the armed forces who is assigned to duty elsewhere immediately following assignment to duty in New Mexico, as long as the spouse or child resides continuously in New Mexico.


All students enrolled for six or fewer hours during the Fall 2011 term are charged resident tuition.

Beginning with the Spring 2012 term, the waiver will no longer be available to non-resident undergraduate and non-degree students. Newly admitted non-resident graduate students will be eligible to enroll for six or fewer hours at resident tuition rates for a maximum of two semesters (Fall and Spring, or Spring and Fall)


Non-resident students, except Nursing students, enrolled for any number of hours in the summer term are charged resident tuition. Nursing students may apply for residency prior to the start of summer classes by emailing residency@unm.edu for instructions.


Waivers of the 12-month physical presence requirement to establish New Mexico residency for tuition purposes are available in the following situations.

Employment Relocation : Persons, their spouses and dependents who move to New Mexico and obtain permanent, full-time employment are not required to complete the 12-month duration requirement. However, all other requirements must be satisfied. Documentation from the employer is required.

Marriage : An individual married to a legal resident of New Mexico is not required to complete the 12-month duration requirement, but all other requirements must be met. Documentation of the spouse’s New Mexico residency and of the couple’s marriage is required.

Retirees : Persons, their spouses and dependents who move to New Mexico for retirement purposes, and who provide appropriate evidence of retirement, are not required to complete the 12-month duration requirement. However, all other requirements must be satisfied.

Yes.  If you are a participant in any of the following programs, that are available only to non-resident students, you may not begin to establish residency (i.e., 12-month physical presence requirement) until after you discontinue the program.

  • New Mexico-Colorado Reciprocal Program
  • WICHE/WUE Student Exchange

Yes If you have permanent resident status from INS, you may establish residency for tuition purposes by meeting all residency requirements.  You may not establish residency if you are not a U.S. citizen and attend UNM on a visa.

Yes.  State regulations require that you complete all requirements for residency before the first day of classes.

You must submit your residency petition no later than the second Friday of the term.  If your petition is submitted after the deadline, it cannot be considered.  Petitions for the Fall term may be submitted beginning the first week of August, for the Spring term beginning the first week of December, and for the Summer term (effective for Summer 2012) begining the third week of April. 

No.  However, you may establish a payment plan through LoboWeb while you are waiting.  The required amount of your first payment would be roughly the equivalent of resident tuition.  If your petition is approved, your tuition is reassessed at in-state rates.

No.  It is your responsibility to petition for residency when you believe you meet the requirements.  According to state regulations, students who fail to petition waive the right to recover the difference.

Petitions are typically reviewed in five to seven working days.  You will receive a letter advising you of the decision.  You may also contact the Office of the Registrar to find out if your residency status has changed, or check your status on LoboWeb.

If your petition was denied, you may amend it with additional information in support of your claim.  An amended petition is reviewed by the same standards as the original.  Amended petitions are subject to the same deadline as originals.

If your amended petition is denied, you may appeal the decision to The University of New Mexico Board of Appeals for Residency.  The Board of Appeals consists of the residency appeals committee as the primary adjudicator, and executive review available as a final consideration.  The Board is the last recourse at the University.

Yes.  You may petition again in the next petition period when you will have met all outstanding requirements.

Yes.  If you establish residency in another state, you lose your New Mexico residency.  You can also lose your residency if are absent from the state for 12 months.  Residency may be revoked if UNM finds that residency was granted to you on the basis of false or misleading information.