North Carolina residents are eligible for a lower tuition rate than non-residents. The controlling North Carolina statute (G.S. 116-143.1) states that "To qualify as a resident for tuition purposes, a person must have established legal residence (domicile) in North Carolina and maintained that legal residence for at least twelve (12) months immediately prior to his/her classification as a resident for tuition purposes." Ownership of property in or payment of taxes to the State of North Carolina does not automatically qualify one for the in-state tuition rate.

Residency status is determined by the Residency Determination Service (RDS). The purpose and mission of RDS is to provide leadership and administration of residency determination in accordance with North Carolina residency laws and applicable federal statutes. The RDS goal is to provide students access to transparent information and opportunity to claim NC residency in a simple, accurate and straightforward manner. For more information on residency for tuition purposes, contact RDS at, telephone 844-896-2411 or fax 919-835-2427.

Students may appeal the decision made by RDS. The RDS has up to eight days to make a decision regarding the appeal.

An out-of-state student’s tuition paid by an in-state employer will be charged at the in-state rate. Students must disclose any change of residency to the registrar or director of student services.