Residency Appeal Application

Students generally come to WMU for the primary purpose of attending the University rather than establishing a domicile in Michigan. Therefore, Admissions will determine a Student’s Domicile based on information provided in the Student’s application to the University. This status will not change for the Period of Enrollment associated with the application.

View the complete policy
If you believe your residency was classified incorrectly based on information provided on your application to the University, please complete this form and submit along with documentation. Please call the Registrar's Office at (269) 387-4300 with questions. Note: You must be registered for on-campus classes for the semester/session that you are applying for a change in residency status. Applications for your residency must be received according to the schedule below:

Application for: Deadline to turn in application:
Spring semester Dec. 1
Summer I session April 1
Summer II session June 1
Fall semester Aug. 1

Applications are generally processed by the Registrar’s Office within a three-week time period. An email will be sent to your WMU email address when the application has been approved or denied. If approved, and you have financial aid or other awards, those departments (e.g., financial aid, graduate college, athletics, international office, etc.) will review your awards to determine if any adjustments are required. Please allow an additional three weeks from the initial approval for the entire process to be completed and your account to be adjusted. 

All communication of your residency application will be sent to your WMU email address. Please check your WMU email regularly for updates and respond to requests for additional information as quickly as possible. Incomplete and/or lack of required information could result in denial and/or delay the processing of your application. 

Your request to change your resident status may be based on the following:

A. Residence of student

You may qualify if:

  • You can demonstrate that you have had a continuous physical presence in Michigan for twelve consecutive months immediately preceding the date of application to WMU, and
  • You intend to make Michigan your permanent home and have no domicile elsewhere.

Suggested documentation:

  • Driver’s license or state ID
  • Vehicle registration for any vehicle driven in Michigan
  • Mortgage deed or other documentation confirming property owned in Michigan
  • Residential lease or rental agreement
  • Current pay stub with year-to-date information and state withholding details
  • Michigan and federal tax returns
  • W2 or 1099 forms
  • Enrollment verification from a Michigan school

B. Residence of parents 

You may qualify as a dependent student if:

  • You are a dependent student of a parent or guardian who is permanently domiciled in Michigan.
  • You have not taken steps to establish a domicile outside of Michigan or any other action inconsistent with maintaining a domicile in Michigan.
  • Your parent or guardian left Michigan, but you completed at least the junior year of high school in Michigan prior to the parent or guardian’s departure, and you remained in Michigan, enrolled as a full-time student in high school or an institution of higher education. 

Suggested documentation: 

  • Birth certificate or documents confirming legal guardianship
  • Driver’s license or state ID (parent[s] or legal guardian[s] and student)
  • Vehicle registration for any vehicle driven in Michigan (parent and student)
  • Current pay stub with year-to-date information and state withholding details (parent and student)
  • Michigan and federal tax returns (parent or guardian)
  • W2 or 1099 forms (parent or guardian)
  • Mortgage deed or other documentation confirming property owned in Michigan (parent or guardian)
  • Residential lease or rental agreement (parent or guardian)
  • High school transcript (student)

C. Residence of spouse

You may qualify as the spouse of a Michigan resident if:

  • You are legally married, and 

  • Your spouse is currently enrolled and qualifies as a resident for tuition-paying purposes. 

Suggested documentation:

  • Driver’s license or state ID (student and spouse)

  • Michigan and federal tax returns (spouse)
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Spouse’s recent tuition statement

D. Michigan high school enrollment and graduation

You may qualify if:

  • You completed your senior year at a Michigan high school and remained physically present in Michigan from the date of high school graduation to the first day of classes of the session for which you were admitted. 

Suggested documentation:

  • Driver’s license or state ID
  • High school transcript
  • Most recent Michigan tax return of parents or guardian (for dependent student) or student (if independent).
  • Current pay stub with year-to-date information and state withholding details
  • Michigan and federal tax returns
  • W2 or 1099 forms

E. In-state tuition for military and dependents

You may qualify if:

  • You are eligible for U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) educational benefits.
  • You are not eligible for VA educational benefits but have honorably served or are serving in the Reserve or Active components of the U.S. Armed Forces.
  • You are a dependent of an individual who is eligible for VA benefits.

Suggested documentation: 

  • Driver’s license or state ID
  • Military member’s U.S. Military ID card 
  • Dependent military ID card
  • DD Form 214 
  • Current Certificate of Eligibility (certifying Ch. 30 or 33 at WMU)
  • Dependent’s current Certificate of Eligibility Letter 
  • Birth certificate (if child of a military member)

F. Individuals holding visas

You may qualify if:

  • You are a non-citizen or the dependent of a non-citizen who holds status in a “dual intent” visa category or in a category that does not require maintaining a permanent residence outside the U.S., certain visa-holders under designated treaties, and certain other lawfully present immigrants. 
  • You can demonstrate that you have had a continuous physical presence in Michigan for twelve consecutive months immediately proceeding the date of application to WMU.

You would NOT qualify if:

  • You are an international student attending on a student visa status of F1, J1, or M1 and H, since you are not able to demonstrate immigrant intent or establish a permanent domicile in Michigan. You should not apply for Michigan resident tuition unless you qualify for residency under another provision of the policy, such as residence of spouse.

Suggested documentation:

  • Driver’s license or state ID
  • Permanent Resident Card or I-551 passport stamp
  • Proof of a pending adjustment of status petition
  • Proof of pending or approved asylum application
  • I-94 card with “Refugee” designation
  • A, E, G, H-1/H-2, I, K, L, O-1/O-3, R, T, TN, U, or V visa status
  • Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) or withholding of removal
  • Mortgage deed or other documentation confirming property owned in Michigan
  • Residential lease or rental agreement
  • Michigan and federal tax returns
  • W2 or 1099 forms

G. Migrant worker (seasonal/agricultural employment) 

You may qualify if: 

  • You are currently, or within the past 24 months, were employed for at least 75 days in farm work and your primary employment was in farm work on a temporary or seasonal basis (i.e., not a constant year-round activity).
  • You participated in a Chapter 1 Migrant Education Program or the National Farmworker Jobs Program. 

Suggested documentation:

  • Proof of participation in Chapter 1 Migrant Education Program or the National Farmworker Jobs Program
  • Michigan and federal tax returns
  • W2 or 1099 forms
  • Most recent pay stub showing year-to-date earnings and withholdings
  • Verification of employment for the qualifying time periods

H. Undocumented students

You may qualify if: 

  • You are an undocumented student and can demonstrate you attended an accredited Michigan high school for at least three years and thereafter graduated from an accredited Michigan high school or received a Michigan General Educational Development High School Equivalency Certificate (GED). 

Suggested documentation:

  • High school transcript
  • GED Certificate
You may be asked to provide information that is not listed. Additional documentation can be provided if it helps prove you qualify for residency.
Files must be less than 200 MB.
Allowed file types: jpg jpeg png eps tif txt rtf pdf doc docx zip.
Files must be less than 200 MB.
Allowed file types: jpg jpeg png eps tif txt rtf pdf doc docx zip.
Files must be less than 200 MB.
Allowed file types: jpg jpeg png eps tif txt rtf pdf doc docx zip.
Files must be less than 200 MB.
Allowed file types: jpg jpeg png eps tif txt rtf pdf doc docx zip.