Financially Independent of Parents

1. A person must physically reside in the state of Washington primarily for purposes other than educational for the 12 consecutive months prior to the quarter for which the student is applying for a change of residency status. (You may be a student during the 12 months of establishing residency, as long as you meet all residency requirements outlined below. For students establishing residency while attending school, ALL residency requirements must be in place for 12 consecutive months prior to the quarter/term for which the student is applying for a change of residency status.)

2. For a student to be considered independent of parents for residency purposes, the student:

  • Cannot be claimed as a dependent by parents for the current or prior calendar year.
  • Must be financially self-supporting for the current and prior calendar year.

Note: Any student who lived at a parent's home during his or her senior year of high school may not count that year for independent status.

3. The student completes the Residence Questionnaire.

4. The student provides following documentation showing his or her ties with Washington State for a minimum of one year:

  • Copies of rental/lease agreement, home purchase agreement, or other documentation verifying physical residence in Washington State for the 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status.
  • Proof of any permanent full-time or part-time employment in Washington State during the 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status (if applicable).
  • Copy of Washington State driver's license or Washington State identification card. (Note: Residents of Washington State are required to replace their previous state's driver's licenses with a Washington State driver's license within 30 days of becoming a resident. Go to the Washington State Department of Licensing website for more information.)
  • Copy of Washington State vehicle registration(s) showing registration of the vehicle(s) during the 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status (if applicable). Vehicle titles are not accepted as proof for residency purposes. (Note: Residents of Washington State are required to title and register their vehicles within 30 days of becoming a resident. Go to the Washington State Department of Licensing website for more information.)
  • Copy of Washington voter registration or Certificate of Voter Registration from your county elections department during the 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status (if applicable). (For Spokane County residents: Spokane County Elections Department, 1033 W Gardner Ave., Spokane, WA 99260-0025, 509-477-2320, Fax 509-477-6607, TDD 509-477-2333. For other county residents, see the Washington State Department of Secretary's Election website for more information.)
  • Proof of having established a bank account in Washington, proof that the student changed his or her mailing address with the bank upon moving to Washington State, and/or proof of Washington-based club/organization memberships, Washington State professional license, or any other documents that may establish "ties" with Washington State during the 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status (if applicable).
  • Examples of other factors that may help students establish proof of domicile include: location and duration of registration or payment of taxes or fees on any mobile home, travel trailer, boat, or any other item or personal property owned or used by the student; address and other perinent facts listed on a true and correct copy of federal and state income tax returns for the calendar year prior to the year in which application is made; residence status in all secondary and postsecondary schools attended outside the state of Washington; address listed on selective service registration; location of membership in professional, business, civic or other organizations; receipt of benefits under a public assistance program; state claimed as residence for obtaining eligibility to hold a public office or for judicial actions; state claimed as residence for obtaining hunting or fishing licenses; and state in which a custodial parent has a child attending public schools.

5. The student who is 24 years of age or younger and unmarried also submits the

  • Verification of his or her financially independent status for the current calendar year and the prior calendar year. Students must use federal income tax returns for the most recent tax year, but may also use W-2 forms, financial aid award letters, irrevocable trust funds with documentation that you are withdrawing funds from the trust, and/or paycheck stubs showing year-to-date income. Students must demonstrate the ability to remain financial independence to age 24 years.
  • A copy of parent's most recent federal income tax return demonstrating that the student is not a dependent (top portion only listing dependents claimed; the tax return can be from the non-resident parent). Disclosure of financial information contained in the returns is not required.
  • If you need to obtain a copy of your federal income tax return, please go to the Internal Revenue Services website.

6. The student who is not a U.S. citizen but holds permanent or temporary resident status, or Refugee status issued at least 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status also submits

  • Copy of both sides of his or her Resident Alien Card, Form I-94, Temporary Resident Card, or other verification of his or her status with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) showing that the qualifying status was issued at least 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of the quarter/term of applying for residency status.
© 2014 Eastern Washington University