California Residency & Community Colleges
California state law requires that a student who is applying for admission or who is currently enrolled and is requesting residency reclassification, provide information and evidence to determine his or her status. (Education Code, Sections 68000 – 68090 & 76140)
Note: The information posted on the residency page is in no way a complete explanation of the residency laws and regulations. Some cases require more extensive investigation and will be handled on a case-by-case basis. However, the burden of proof to clearly demonstrate both physical presence and intent is the responsibility of the student.
Residency is determined by the union of physical presence and evidence of intent to make California the permanent home for one prior year as of the residence determination date. The residence determination date is the day immediately preceding the opening day of a semester or session.
ALL documentation must be received by the week before Final Examination Week begins for full-semester-length classes. See Important Dates and Deadlines for current semester dates. No appeals or documents will be accepted once final exams have begun.
Note: Residency appeals are not retroactive. Once Final Examination Week begins, no appeals for that semester will be accepted and the student will be responsible for all applicable fees.
A legal resident of California must provide verification of the following*:
- Physical presence for one year prior to the residency determination date includes
but is not limited to:
- Rental/lease agreement
- Utility bills
- Employment paystubs
- Bank statements
- Intent -- acceptable intent includes but is not limited to:
- Filing California state taxes as a resident.
- Maintaining California as the legal state of residence on leave and earning statement and W-2 forms while in the military.
- Possession of a valid Resident California Vehicle Registration.
- Possession of a valid California Driver's License.
- Registering to vote and voting in California.
- Being a petitioner for divorce in California.
- Obtain licensing from California for professional practice.
- Registering for Selective Service.
Students who have immigrant or non-immigrant status may also be required to submit verification of their application date or adjustment of status from U.S. Citizenship and Immigrations Services (USCIS).
The following may be inconsistent with the claim to establish California residency:
- Maintaining out-of-state driver's license or vehicle registration.
- Filing the California non-resident tax form.
- Maintaining voter registration in another state.
- Attending an out-of-state institution as a resident of that state.
- Petitioning for divorce in another state.
- Paying resident tax to another state.
Forms for Military Residency
All relevant forms may be found on our Printable Residency Forms page, or in the Admissions office. Alternative formats are available on request.
Get In Touch
Meet the faculty and staff that you'll work with at the Chula Vista campus.
Southwestern College, Admissions & Records
Cesar Chavez Student Services Center, 1st Floor
900 Otay Lakes Rd
Chula Vista, CA 91910