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. More information, detailing residency requirements and restrictions, is available at the Admissions Office or from the New Mexico Department of Higher Education Residency website.

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 18th 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 their 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.

Proof of New Mexico Residency
Residency regulations require evidence of at least two proofs of residency in New Mexico, which support the student's declaration of intent to become a resident of the state. Anyone having an out-of-state proof of residency is not eligible for New Mexico resident tuition rates. 

  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.
  3. SB582-Any person who attended high school in NM for at least one year and received a HS diploma or High School Equivalency Credential such as a 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).

Residency for Non-US Citizens

Non-US 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- US 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-US 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 New Mexico for at least one year and received a High School diploma or High School Equivalency Credential such as a GED from a NM institution regardless of immigration status may establish residency.

Changing Your Resident Tuition Classification

Residency forms and documents may be scanned and emailed to admissions@cnm.edu or submitted in person at any CNM campus. Any required forms may be obtained from the forms link on this page or from the CNM Admissions Office.

To update or change your residency classification for tuition purposes, you will be required to submit documentation and/or forms to the CNM Admissions Office. Responses to the residency questions on the admission application that caused your non-resident tuition classification must be proven to no longer exist.

Any proof of NM residency 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 the in-state residency status to be denied or revoked. 

The specific documents or forms needed to update or change your residency classification for tuition purposes will depend on your current status as a continuing or new CNM student.

Continuing Students

Continuing students, who are currently classified as Non-Resident for tuition purposes, may request a change in residency classification once the Basic Residency Requirements above are satisfied. Continuing students must file a Petition for In-State Tuition Classification with the CNM Admissions Office.

Residency petitions will be accepted through the 15th day of the term and must include documentation supporting each Basic Residency Requirement listed above. All requirements for residency must be met prior to the first day of the term.

New Students

New students, who are currently classified as Non-Resident for tuition purposes, requesting a change in  residency classification only need to submit documentation correcting the condition(s) that caused the Non-Resident classification.

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.

Residency Tuition Appeals

Students wishing to appeal their residency classification may do so only after speaking with Admissions staff and pursuing all other options for requesting a change in residency classification. Please note that appeals are only available for exceptional or extenuating circumstances. Appeals for simply missing the term deadline will not be considered. 

Note: All communication from CNM concerning your residency petition or appeal will be sent to your myCNM student email address. Your residency status is posted in your CNM student account.