You are here: Home / Departments / Enrollment Services / Registration / Basic Residency Requirements

Basic Residency Requirements

Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes

The New Mexico Department of Higher Education establishes residency requirements for tuition purposes. These requirements apply to US citizens and those with who have applied for or received Permanent Resident status (see additional information on non-citizens below). A student is classified as a resident or non-resident for tuition purposes based on information supplied at the time of admission or readmission. A brochure detailing residency requirements and restrictions is available at any Admissions Office at all campuses.

There are four basic residency requirements:

12 months consecutive residenceTwelve Month Residence Waivers
A student must physically reside in New Mexico for the 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the term.  Students cannot begin to complete the 12 month requirement until their 18 th birthday.

Financial IndependenceFinancial Independence Waivers
Students cannot be approved for residency if they are financially dependent on their parents or legal guardians who are non-residents of New Mexico.  A minor's residence is presumed to be the same as his/her parents' or legal guardian's.

Written Declaration of Intent
The Admission Form and Petition for In-State Residency Form ask if you intend to be a New Mexico resident.

Overt Acts
Residency regulations require the completion of at least two overt acts which support the student's declaration of intent to become a permanent resident.  No overt act can be out-of-state
1. If applicant is financially dependent, a copy of parents or guardians' previous year federal income tax.
2. NM high school transcript confirming attendance within the past 12 months.
3. NM drivers license or ID card issued prior to the first day of the term.
4. Proof of payment of NM state income tax for the previous year.
5. Evidence of employment in NM.
6. NM vehicle registration issued prior to the first day of the term.
7. NM voter registration issued prior to the first day of the term.
8. Proof of residential property ownership in NM.
9. Rental agreement in NM.
10. Utility bill in NM.
11. Other documentary evidence or reasonable explanation of residency as determined by CNM.


Residency Overrides:
Students meeting any of the following conditions override the four basic requirements and can be granted residency.
1. Any enrolled member of an American Indian nation, tribe or pueblo located wholly or partially in New
Mexico (C.I.B. or similar documentation required).
2. Any active duty member (or spouse or dependent) of the armed forces of the United States including
the national guard stationed in New Mexico (active duty military waiver form required).
3. SB582-Any person who attended high school in NM for at least one year and received a HS diploma
or GED from a NM institution regardless of immigration status may establish residency (NM high
school transcript required; if you attended one HS for at least one year but did not graduate, a
copy of your diploma from a different NM institution showing graduation is also required).

To Change Your Residency Status

Continuing non-resident students who have satisfied requirements for New Mexico residency may file a Petition for In-State Tuition Classification in any CNM Admissions Office.  Residency petitions will be accepted through the 15 th day of the term and must include documentation verifying all four requirements (or any waiver or override used).  All requirements for residency must be met prior to the first day of the term.

New students changing residency for the term you applied for only need to submit documentation correcting the condition(s) that made you non-resident.  Documentation will be accepted through the 15th day of the term.  All requirements for residency must be met prior to the first day of the term.

Any act considered inconsistent with being a New Mexico resident-such as maintaining a driver's license, automobile registration or voter registration in another state-will cause in-state residency status to be denied or revoked. All acts that caused your non-resident status, including out-of-state overt acts reported on your admission application, must be proven to no longer exist.

All communication from CNM concerning your residency petition will be sent to your my CNM student email address.  Your residency status is posted in your my CNM student account.

Residency for non-US citizens

Non-citizens who are lawfully in the United States and have applied for or obtained permanent status from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services , or non-citizens who serve on active duty in the armed forces of the United States, may establish residency by meeting the durational and intent requirements. Any non-citizens on other visas (student, diplomatic, visitor or visiting scholar visa, including spouses and dependents) are non-residents for tuition purposes.

Any person who attended high school in NM for at least one year and received a HS diploma or GED from a NM institution regardless of immigration status may establish residency.

Note: Any required forms may be obtained from the forms link on this page or at any CNM Admissions Office.