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Exceptions to One-Year Colorado Domicile Requirement

The following information is considered general guidance and should not be taken as legal advice. Please refer to the Colorado State Statue to view the actual requirements. 

Tuition classification is governed by C.R.S. 23-7-101, et. seq. (1973), as amended, and in published policies of the Colorado Commission on Higher Education (CCHE).

Colorado Employment & Relocation

Granting in-state student status to a child who moves to Colorado during the child’s senior year of high school as the result of the child’s parent or legal guardian taking a job in the state that requires relocating to Colorado. 

  • Child’s parent or legal guardian moved their family to CO for the purpose of accepting a job in the state during the child’s senior year of high school.
  • Child moved with their parent or legal guardian to CO during the child’s senior yr of high school and they graduated from a CO public high school.
  • Must be a legal resident of the US.

§27-7-111 Colorado Residency Statutes

Four-Year Rule

If your parents (or court-appointed legal guardians) maintain Colorado domicile for four years and subsequently establish domicile elsewhere, you will remain eligible for resident tuition if:

  • Your parents leave Colorado after your junior year of high school and you enroll at a Colorado public college or university within three years and six months after your parents leave Colorado.
    OR
  • You maintain continuous Colorado domicile. This provision will generally be met if you continue to reside in Colorado after your parents leave or if you reside outside the state only temporarily (for example, to attend college or for military service) while maintaining Colorado domiciliary connections such as voter registration and income tax filing.

Colorado High School Graduate

A student can qualify for resident tuition regardless of emancipation, parent domicile or parent citizenship if the student:

  • Is a U.S. citizen (green card holders do not qualify), AND
  • Graduated from a Colorado high school or received a Colorado GED, AND
  • Attended a Colorado high school for at least the three years immediately preceding enrollment in a Colorado institution of higher education. In the case of a GED, the three-year requirement is a physical residence requirement rather than a high school residence requirement.

Economic Development Incentive

The Economic Development Incentive provides exception to the one-year domicile requirement for employees (not spouses) and employee’s children (unmarried child under 22 years of age on the first day of the term) of companies who move to Colorado pursuant to an incentive from the Office of Economic Development or a local government economic incentive program. The employee must have been employed by the employer prior to the relocation. See the Tuition Classification Officer for the necessary Economic Development Form if you believe you qualify.

New Faculty at Colorado State-Supported College (dependent only)

This application is for children of new faculty at Colorado state-supported colleges and universities who otherwise would not qualify for in-state tuition as one-year Colorado residents.

The student may receive in-state tuition if the student moved to Colorado in the 12 months preceding enrollment because the student's parent or legal guardian moved to Colorado to take a paid faculty position at a state-supported institution of higher education.

The faculty member and the faculty member's spouse do not qualify for this exception.

Refer to section C.R.S 23-7-109(1)b.

U.S. Olympic Athlete

Colorado State law HB17-1081 went into effect on Aug. 9, 2017. This law allows state-supported institutions of higher education to charge in-state tuition to elite athletes residing anywhere in Colorado and training in an elite-level program approved by the United States Olympic Committee and the governing body of an Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American or Parapan American sport.

Verification of participation in a qualifying elite training program is required from the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) and the national governing bodies of Olympic, Paralympic and Pan American or Parapan American sport field teams on or before the first day of class each semester.