Establishing Florida residency

Please note- IF you indicated on your application that you are a Florida resident, you MUST follow-through and submit the required documents to prove your residency!  We frequently find that applicants do not submit the required residency documents and therefore their residency is not granted.  Please do not assume that being born and raised in Florida, or attending Florida education institutions waives the requirement.

It is strongly recommended by the BMS program that all graduate assistants who are U.S. citizens, permanent resident aliens, or legal aliens granted indefinite stay by the Immigration and Naturalizations Service, take appropriate actions to become in-state residents for tuition purposes no later than the start of the fall semester of their first year in the program.

To accomplish this, some actions should be taken no later than the beginning of their first semester of enrollment and no later than the end of the drop/add period for the first semester. It takes 1 year to establish residency so all Non-Florida U.S. students should start the process prior to beginning at UF.

Supply Documentation

Upon completion of the “Declaration of Domicile” you will need to supply documentation to prove that you have maintained 12 months physical presence in the state of Florida. This can be done by submitting the documents outlined in section IV of the Request for Change in Residency Status.

Supporting Documents

Supporting documents needed are as follows:

  • Obtain a Florida Driver’s License (original birth certificate required along with secondary identification) If you do not have a car, then obtain a Florida identification card. These can be obtained from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Office .
  • Register to vote at the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Office and obtain a Florida voter identification card. (You may register in whatever Florida county is appropriate for your residence.
  • Maintain a copy of your offer letter to use as proof of employment for the 12 month period.
  • If you own a vehicle, then register it in the State of Florida, by going to the Alachua County Tax Collector’s Office. If you reside in another Florida county you may register your vehicle at the Tax Collector’s Office there.
  • Open a local bank account as this provides additional documentation that you are a permanent resident.
  • If you file your own Federal income tax return as an independent person, you need to provide a copy of the latest return you filed as documentation when you file the Request for Change in Residency Status with the Registrar’s Office.
  • If your parents or guardians claimed you as a dependent on their most recent return but are not going to claim you as a dependent on future returns, then they need to provide you with a notarized statement stating this.
  • Your Graduate Assistantship documents with FTE can be obtained by your home financial department (once you’ve chosen a mentor), or by the Office of Graduate Education.


Documents supporting the establishment of legal residence should be dated, issued or filed at least 12 months before the first day of classes of the term for which a Florida resident classification is sought. You must be an independent person to be able to establish Florida residency unless your parents or guardians or spouse establishes residency in Florida. When filling out residency affidavit DO NOT LEAVE BLANKS. If something does not apply to you use “N/A” Application for Residency MUST be done prior to the term AND you must specify the term in which you are applying. You cannot apply for residency retroactively.

TIP: The more documents that you can produce the better.

Submit Petition

After you have been in Florida approximately 11.5 or 12 months (but before tuition and fees are due in the first semester in which you have been a resident of Florida for 12 months- typically fall of your second year) submit the completed Request for Change in Residency Status via secure upload at

Students can monitor the progress of the petition at ONE.UF.

The deadline to submit the Request for Residency Change form and supporting documentation is the standard fee payment deadline for the term in which you are applying. Residency reclassification can take up to six weeks for a decision because of the evaluative process required. Residency reclassification cannot be applied retroactively to prior terms.

UF Transcript requirements

Official transcripts must be submitted directly to the University of Florida, Office of Admissions for all undergraduate and graduate institutions you listed in your application.  All official transcripts should be on file with UF prior to the start of the fall semester.  Official transcripts can be sent to in two ways; hard copy paper transcripts sent via mail or electronic transcripts sent from your institution(s) directly to UF, which can save up to two weeks response time.  

Official hardcopy paper transcripts should be mailed to:

University of Florida, Office of Admissions

201 Criser Hall, P O Box 11400

Gainesville, FL  32611-4000

Please note all hard copy paper transcripts sent via mail must be received by UF in a sealed envelope.