Residency Requirements

In accordance with 19 Texas Administrative Code §21.25, upon admission to WCJC, a student’s residency classification will be determined based on the information they disclose on the Core Residency questions within their ApplyTexas application.

 

Residency Status

General Information

With the exception of non-US Citizens, new and readmitted students should generally not be required to submit additional proof of residency at the time they (re-)apply.  As stated in19 TAC §21.25, documentation may be required if the student provides inconsistent responses on their ApplyTexas application and/or Core Residency questionnaire or if there are variances within the student’s record that require clarification or additional support.

Continuing students who have previously been classified will retain their resident classification in each subsequent term until they provide information to the institution that would warrant a change in status.  Transfer students will maintain the residence classification issued by their last public institution of attendance, if attendance occurred during the academic year directly preceding the term of admission at WCJC, as required by 19 TAC §21.26.

A student’s current home address must be used to determine residency; PO boxes and/or dormitory addresses may not be used for residency purposes. It is the responsibility of the student to provide accurate information/ documentation and register under the correct residency classification.

Texas Resident

An admitted student will be classified as a Texas Resident (19 TAC §21.24), and will be entitled to pay Texas Resident tuition, under the conditions that they have/are:

  1. High school/GED completion:
    1. Graduated from a public or accredited private high school in Texas or received the equivalent (GED) in this state;
    2. Maintained a residence continuously in Texas for the 36 months immediately preceding the date of graduation or receipt of GED; and
    3. Continuously maintained a residence in Texas for the 12 months preceding the census date of the term in which the student first enrolls at WCJC.
  1. Domicile in Texas:
    1. Established a domicile in Texas no fewer than 12 months before the census date of the term in which the student first enrolls at WCJC; and
    2. Maintained a residence continuously in Texas for the 12 months immediately preceding the census date of the term in which the student first enrolls at WCJC.
    3. An individual with a Discharge from Active Duty will be considered a Texas Resident; there is not time limit required to establish domicile in Texas. “Home of Record…” is not relevant to establishing Texas Residency.  Students must submit their DD-214 with “Honorable” character of service.
  1. Dependent of a Texas Resident:
    1. The dependent of a parent who established a domicile in Texas no fewer than 12 months before the census date of the term in which the student first enrolls at WCJC; and
    2. Maintained a residence continuously in Texas for the 12 months immediately preceding the census date of the term in which the student first enrolls at WCJC.

If a person applies for resident status under the above provisions, the person shall submit the following to WCJC to establish residence status:

  1. A statement of the dates and length of time the person (or their parent) has resided in the state; and
  2. A statement by the person (or their parent) that their presence in the state for that period was for the purpose of establishing and maintaining domicile.
In-District vs Out-of-District

In-District:  A “Texas Resident” (see above) will be classified as an “In-District” student if they physically reside within the geographic boundaries of the WCJC tax district  at the time of application, specifically Wharton County and Needville ISD only.

Out-of-District:  A “Texas Resident” (see above) will be classified as an “Out-of-District” student if they physically reside outside of the geographic boundaries of the WCJC tax district at the time of application.  A Texas Resident who does not live in either Wharton County or Needville ISD will be charged out-of-district tuition.

Non-Resident

Non-Resident: An admitted student who is a U.S. Citizen, but does not qualify as a “Texas Resident” (see above) based on the required categorizations, will be classified a “Non-Resident” student.

Non-US Citizen

WCJC does not currently admit international students.  Non-US Citizens are eligible to establish and maintain domicile in this state for a period of 12 months, and are eligible for classification as a “Texas Resident” after that time, for the following statuses and with one (1) supporting document:

  1. A permanent resident, including DACA/Dream Act.

Documentation required:

  • Permanent resident card (I-551), or
  • Approved I-797 with a case type of I-485.
  • DACA/Dream Act will need I-797 with a case type of I-821D.
  • If becomes a naturalized citizen while enrolled, will need naturalization certificate.
  • An I-797C, Notice of Action alone is not sufficient to establish residency.

 

  1. A person who is eligible for permanent resident status.

Documentation required:

  • Current (not expired) application to register as Permanent Resident (I-485), or
  • Approved I-797 with a case type of I-485.

 

  1. A non-immigrant who holds a Visa identified as eligible to domicile.

Documents include:

  • Current (not expired) A-1, A-2 who is dependent of A-1, A-3, E-1, E-2, G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, G-5, H-1B, H-4 who is a dependent of H-1B, I, K-1, K-2, K-3, K-4, L-1, L1-a, L1-b, L-2, N-8, N-9, NATO 1-7, O-1, O-3 who is dependent of O-1, R-1, R-2, T-1, T-2, T-3, T-4, TPS, U-1, U-2, U-3, U-4, V-1, V-2, or V-3.
    • Any dependent listed above must have a hold on their account for the term prior to their 21st birthday.
  • B-2 visa holders may take ESL classes through CE, only.
  • F1, J, M visa holders are not eligible.
  • Also acceptable:
    • Approved I-797A with a case type of I-129.
    • Approved I-797A with a case type of I-539.
    • Either document will indicate the visa type under “Notice Type” and “Class”.

 

  1. A person classified by the USCIS as a Refugee, Asylee, Parolee, Conditional Permanent Resident, or Temporary Resident.

Documents include:

  • Current (not expired) I-94, or
  • Current (not expired) I-551 card, or
  • Current (not expired) I-688, I-688a, or I-688b card, or
  • Approved I-797 with a case type of I-730, or
  • Current (not expired) I-512L.

 

  1. A person holding Temporary Protected Status, and Spouses and Children with approved petitions under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), an applicant with an approved USCIS I-360, and a person granted deferred action status by USCIS. Please provide relevant documentation.

 

  1. A person who has filed an application for Cancellation of Removal and Adjustment of Status under Immigration Nationality Act 240A(b) or a Cancellation of Removal and Adjustment of Status under the Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA), Haitian Refugee Immigrant Fairness Act (HRIFA), or the Cuban Adjustment Act, and who has been issued a fee/filing receipt or Notice of Action by USCIS. Please provide relevant documentation.

 

  1. A person who has filed for adjustment of status to that of a person admitted as a Permanent Resident under 8 United States Code 1255, or under the "registry" program (8 United States Code 1259), or the Special Immigrant Juvenile Program (8 USC 1101(a)(27)(J)) and has been issued a fee/filing receipt or Notice of Action by USCIS. Please provide relevant documentation.
Undocumented Students

State law allows for undocumented students to be admitted to the College, and to be considered a “Texas Resident” for tuition purposes, if the student:

  1. Graduated or will graduate from a Texas public or private high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma (GED);
  2. Resided in Texas for 36 months leading up to graduation from high school or receiving the equivalent of a high school diploma;
  3. Has resided or will have resided in Texas for the 12 months prior to the census date of the semester in which they will first enroll in the college; and
  4. Sign the Affidavit of Intent to Become a Permanent Residentwhich attests that the student has filed, or will file, an application to become a permanent resident at the earliest opportunity they are eligible to do so.

 

Residency Reclassification

General Information

If a current WCJC student requires an update to their residency status, they are required to submit documentation to support their claim to be a “Texas Resident” or “In-District Resident”. Students must submit aCore Residency Questionnaire, along with all supporting documentation, to the Office of Admissions and Registration.  Reclassification of a student’s residency must be submitted prior to the census date in order for their tuition status to apply to the current semester.  Reclassifications that are filed after the census date will apply to the following term.

If a student moved to Texas primarily for the purpose of attending an institution of higher education, it is presumed that they have not met the required intent to establish a domicile in Texas.  Students may not establish domicile by performing acts which are directly-related to meeting educational objectives or are routinely performed by temporary residents of Texas  (19 TAC §21.24).

"Non-Resident" to "Texas Resident"

Students who request a reclassification from “Non-Resident” to “Texas Resident” must submit one document from List A (Maintain Residence) and one document from List B (Establish Domicile), in addition to the Core Residency Questionnaire. Documentation from each list must show a minimum of 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the census date. 

List A (Maintain Residence)

  • Texas high school transcript with a graduation date fewer than 12 months old.
  • Texas driver’s license, ID, U.S. Passport, or voter registration card (no temporary paper copies) with address in the State of Texas.
  • Original apartment lease agreement with an address in the State of Texas; must include student’s name and lease dates.
  • Proof of property tax payments for the year directly preceding enrollment at WCJC for a residential address in the State of Texas.
  • Bank statements indicating the student’s address in the State of Texas.
  • Automobile insurance or vehicle registration with an address in the State of Texas.
  • Credit card statements with an address in the State of Texas.
  • Residential utility bills (e.g. electricity, water, WiFi, or gas), cell phone bills, etc. for a residential address in the State of Texas.
  • Written statements from social service agencies (TANF, social security, Medicaid, SNAP, CHIPS, etc.) attesting to the provision of services.

List B (Establish Domicile)

  • Proof of significant gainful employment, including employer-provided employment verification, proof of self-employment, or pay stubs. Student employment does not count toward this requirement.
  • Proof of ownership in real property, sole or joint.
  • Proof of ownership of a business in Texas.
  • Proof of marriage to a Texas Resident.
  • Proof of military service.
  • Written statements from social service agencies (TANF, social security, Medicaid, SNAP, CHIPS, etc.) attesting to the provision of services.
"Non-Resident" to "In-District"

Students who request a reclassification from “Non-Resident” to “In-District” must submit one document from List A (Maintain Residence) and one document from List B (Establish Domicile), in addition to the Core Residency Questionnaire. To be classified as “In-District”, the student must reside at an address within the WCJC tax district (Wharton County or Needville ISD). Documentation from each list must show a minimum of 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the census date. 

List A (Maintain Residence)

  • In-district high school transcript with a graduation date fewer than 12 months old.
  • Texas driver’s license, ID, U.S. Passport, or voter registration card (no temporary paper copies) with address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Original apartment lease agreement with address in the WCJC tax district; must include student’s name and lease dates.
  • Proof of property tax payments for the year directly preceding enrollment at WCJC for a residential address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Bank statements indicating the student’s address at WCJC for a residential address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Automobile insurance or vehicle registration with address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Credit card statements with address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Residential utility bills (e.g. electricity, water, WiFi, or gas), cell phone bills, etc. for a residential address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Written statements from social service agencies (TANF, social security, Medicaid, SNAP, CHIPS, etc.) attesting to the provision of services.

List B (Establish Domicile)

  • Proof of significant gainful employment, including employer-provided employment verification, proof of self-employment, or pay stubs. Student employment does not count toward this requirement.
  • Proof of ownership in real property, sole or joint.
  • Proof of ownership of a business in Texas.
  • Proof of marriage to a Texas Resident.
  • Proof of military service.
  • Written statements from social service agencies (TANF, social security, Medicaid, SNAP, CHIPS, etc.) attesting to the provision of services.
"Out-of-District" to "In-District"

Students who request a reclassification from “Out-of-District” to “In-District” must submit one document from the following list, in addition to the Core Residency Questionnaire. To be classified as “In-District”, the student must reside at an address within the WCJC tax district (Wharton County or Needville ISD). Documentation must show a minimum of 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the census date.

  • In-district high school transcript with a graduation date fewer than 12 months old.
  • Texas driver’s license, ID, or voter registration card (no temporary paper copies) with address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Original apartment lease agreement with address in the WCJC tax district; must include student’s name and lease dates.
  • Proof of property tax payments for the year directly preceding enrollment at WCJC for a residential address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Bank statements indicating the student’s address at WCJC for a residential address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Automobile insurance or vehicle registration with address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Credit card statements with address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Residential utility bills (e.g. electricity, water, WiFi, or gas), cell phone bills, etc. for a residential address in the WCJC tax district.
  • Written statements from social service agencies (TANF, social security, Medicaid, SNAP, CHIPS, etc.) attesting to the provision of services.
Errors in Residency Status

In the event that the College unintentionally misclassifies a “Non-Resident” as a “Texas Resident” or “In-District Resident”, the College will charge out-of-state tuition and fees to that student beginning with the first semester directly following discovery of the error. If this type of misclassification occurs as a result of a student purposely submitting false information, the student will be charged for all back-due tuition and fees for each semester in which the student should have paid the “Non-Resident” tuition.

In the event that the College unintentionally misclassifies a “Texas Resident” or “In-District Resident” as a “Non-Resident” or “Out-of-District Resident”, the College will immediately refund the student of any overages in tuition and fees paid, dating back to the date of initial enrollment.

Please contact the Office of Admissions and Registration at 979-532-6303 for questions or concerns related to residency status and required documentation.

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