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inparadise: "We live in PA and own a place in VA. With Youngest approaching college age, we are looking at the possibility for me to establish residency in VA to multiply his options for in-state tuition. DH would join me in VA after he retires and Youngest graduates high school.

I am assuming I would have to do things like get my license there, register my car, register to vote, and pay VA taxes on my limited investment income. I would commute back and forth to PA and probably not get a job beyond continuing to work on our place."

This may be the same URL the PSU posted (I did not double check:

General -

Virginia -

"The Code requires that independent students, emancipated minors, or the parents/guardians of unemancipated minors or dependents prove Virginia domicile to receive in-state tuition. Applicants must prove by clear and convincing evidence that they have abandoned any previous domicile and have been domiciled in Virginia for at least twelve months prior to the first day of class for which the student is registering.

. . .

The domicile of an unemancipated minor or dependent student 18 years or older may be [1] the domicile of the parent with whom the student resides or [2] the parent who, for the previous and present year, has claimed the student as a dependent for Federal and Virginia income tax purposes."

I am assuming that your kids are neither independent students nor emancipated minors.

Definition [1] seems to be inapplicable because your son will be residing with your spouse in Pennsylvania and gradutating from a Pennsylvania high school.

I am not a tax lawyer, but definition [2] also seems to be a reach. I have no idea what the requirements are for claiming a dependent under Virginia tax law, but Federal income taxlaw has a four point test:

"1. Relationship — the person must be your child, step child, adopted child, foster child, brother or sister, or a descendant of one of these (for example, a grandchild or nephew).

2. Residence — for more than half the year, the person must have the same residence as you do. [emphasis added]

3. Age — the person must be
•under age 19 at the end of the year, or
•under age 24 and a be a full-time student for at least five months out of the year, or
•any age and totally and permanently disabled.

4. Support — the person did not provide more than half of his or her own support during the year."

Part 2 seems to be the downfall of your plan.

Now, one thought, and I am unsure of its validity, but you may want to determine if it might be possible (especially if status at time of application is not permanent), and assumeing that your son might be admitted while a non-resident, after you move timely, for your son to apply, be accepted (presumably), graduate from HS, move to Virgina with you, then defer admission for a gap year so that he could establish Virgina residency, and then meet the requirement of Virgina residency of "at least twelve months prior to the first day of class for which the student is registering".


If students wish to be considered legal residents for the purposes of admission and tuition, they must apply for Virginia status by completing the Application for Virginia In-State Educational Privileges, which is a part of our application for admission. For more information, please read About Virginia Domicile.

If you are a dependent and your parent(s) or spouse moves to Virginia while you are in school and fulfills the requirements of domicile, you should petition for a change of status effective 12 months after the move. If you entered classified as an out-of-state student, you must present clear and convincing evidence to rebut the presumption that you are residing in the State primarily to attend school. Residence or physical presence in Virginia primarily to attend the University does not entitle you to in-state tuition rates.


See also: for some .pdf forms that are required, and

Note the following:

Domiciliary intent means present intent to remain indefinitely, that is, the individual has no plans or expectation to move from Virginia. Residence in Virginia for a temporary purpose or stay, even if that stay is lengthy, with present intent to return to a former state or country upon completion of such purpose does not constitute domicile.

A student who claims Virginia domicile must support that claim by clear and convincing evidence. Clear and convincing evidence is not as stringent a standard as proof beyond a reasonable doubt, as required in the criminal context, but is a degree of proof higher than a mere preponderance of the evidence. Clear and convincing evidence is that degree of proof that will produce a firm conviction or a firm belief as to the facts sought to be established. The evidence must justify the claim both clearly and convincingly.

Institutions shall also consider financial support obtained from parents or other relatives. Substantial financial support from a parent or relative in another state could be evidence of continuing ties to that state.

Mere physical presence or residence primarily for educational purposes will not confer domiciliary status. For example, a student who moves to Virginia for the primary purposes of becoming a full-time student is not a Virginia domiciliary, even if the student has been in Virginia for the required one-year period.

1. If a student is classified initially as out-of-state, it is the responsibility of the student thereafter to petition the responsible official for reclassification to in-state status if the student believes that subsequent changes in facts justify such a reclassification. The institution will not assume responsibility for initiating such an inquiry independently.

2. It is presumed that a matriculating student who enters an institution classified as an out-of-state student remains in the Commonwealth for the purpose of attending school and not as a bona fide domiciliary. The student seeking status reclassification is required to rebut this presumption by clear and convincing evidence.

Falsification of information.

A. Where an institution has erroneously classified a student as a Virginia domicile for tuition purposes resulting from the student's knowingly providing erroneous information in an attempt to evade payment of out-of-state fees, the application of the student is fraudulent.

B. An institution shall re-examine an application suspected as being fraudulent and redetermine domicile status. If warranted, the institution may change the student's status retroactively to the beginning of the term for which a fraudulent application was filed. Such a retroactive change will make the student responsible for the out-of-state tuition differential for the enrolled term or terms intervening between the fraudulent application and its discovery.

C. The student may also be subject to dismissal from the institution or such other action as the institution deems proper. Due process procedures, as provided in Section 25 and Section 26, must be followed to dismiss the student and, if the student chooses, to appeal such action.

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