Residency Requirement

In general, students from Michigan pay resident tuition rates, students from outside of Michigan pay non-resident tuition rates.

Northern, like the other public universities in Michigan, charges lower tuition rates to Michigan residents, their spouses and children partially because the state universities receive some operating funds from the State of Michigan.

In most cases, if you have lived in the state of Michigan for at least six consecutive months before the first day of classes, you'll qualify as a Michigan resident.  Of course, there are always exceptions.

Children of NMU alumni are eligible for resident tuition rates, no matter where their parents live now.  Active-duty military and veterans (and their spouses and dependent children) also automatically qualify for resident tuition. The residency guidelines also allow students to be considered residents if they have a legal guardian who is a Michigan resident.

In determining a person's eligibility for residency, each case is considered separately. Non-resident students can apply for a change in residency status by submitting a student residency application. New students should submit this form to the Admissions Office. Currently enrolled students should submit the form to the Registrar's Office.

Establishing Residency

A student must live in Michigan for six consecutive months immediately preceding the first day of the semester for which the student is applying for residency.  The student must demonstrate that their previous domicile has been abandoned and a Michigan domicile established not only while the student is attending the university, but thereafter as well.  Each individual case will be determined on its own particular facts.  See NMU's residency policy.

Applicants must submit the student residency application.  You will need to provide documentation such as ownership of a home, permanent employment, Michigan voter registration, Michigan vehicle registration, and/or Michigan driver's license depending on your personal circumstances.  Student residency application forms must be submitted to the Admissions Office (new students) or the Registrar's Office (currently enrolled students).

Enrolled Student Inquiries

Registrar's Office
C.B. Hedgcock, Room 2202

New Student Inquiries

Admissions Office
C.B. Hedgcock, Room 2212

If your parents, legal guardian, spouse or other family members move to Michigan, your residency status may change. You may be eligible for residency if you are dependent upon a parent or spouse who is working full-time and has established domicile in Michigan for reasons other than education and has established the residency by the beginning of the semester.

Resident status may be gained, without the six-month domicile requirement, if the domicile of a married student follows that of his or her spouse, if such spouse has established a domicile in Michigan.

The residency guidelines allow students to be considered residents if they have a legal guardian who is a Michigan resident.

If your parents are Michigan residents and move out of the state while you are an enrolled resident student, you will continue to be classified as a resident through the completion of your degree program.  If you apply for a second degree program, you will still be considered a resident.

Dependents or grandchildren of NMU alumni who have earned an associate degree or higher from NMU are eligible to receive a tuition rate equivalent to in-state tuition at NMU. To apply, the alumnus/alumna must complete the Dependent Certification of NMU Alumnus form.  Dependents are those age 24 or younger at time of enrollment.

For more information, contact the  Admissions OfficeAlumni Office or the Registrar's Office (see "contact us" on these departmental pages.)

If you (your child, spouse or parent) have lived most of your life in Michigan, you may still be considered a Michigan resident even if you have recently moved.

In determining a person's eligibility for residency, each individual case must be determined on its own particular facts.  Graduation from a Michigan high school may be used in support of a claim for residence classification.  In addition, you may have other facts and circumstances to support your petition.

Veterans or those currently serving in the United States Armed Forces, and their covered individuals, receive resident-equivalent tuition rates. Please provide documentation of your status as a veteran, active military member, or covered individual (spouse, dependent, or individual using educational assistance).

If you have accepted an offer of permanent employment in the State of Michigan, you may be eligible for residency.

If you are trying to establish residency in Michigan, paying taxes in Michigan is an indicator of your intent to become a Michigan resident.  However, you must meet all the residency criteria to be eligible for residency for tuition purposes.

Obtaining a Michigan driver's license and registering to vote in Michigan demonstrates your intent to make Michigan your state of residence.  Transferring these items of registration is a way to show that you intend to become a Michigan resident.  But, providing this documentation, standing alone, shall not constitute sufficient evidence of domicile to effect classification of a student as a resident for tuition purposes.

The expectation is that students who are in the process of establishing their residency are physically living in the State of Michigan for the 6 consecutive months prior to the semester for which they are requesting reclassification.  Leaving the state for the summer could jeopardize your claim to Michigan residency.  But, each individual case must be determined on its own particular facts.

Any student who has been classified as a non-resident at the time of admission to NMU must apply for reclassification as a resident for tuition purposes.  Even though you have lived in Michigan for a full year while attending NMU as a non-resident student, you will not be automatically granted resident status.