In State Residency

Where you live determines your status as an in-state or out-of-state student and may impact your tuition and scholarship eligibility. The University of South Carolina is required by law to verify your residency before granting in-state status for tuition purposes.

Upon admission, all students claiming South Carolina as their state of residence must complete the SC Residency Application here. Any new student claiming South Carolina as their state of residence who does not apply for residency will be billed at non-resident tuition rates.

It is important to note that verifying SC Residency is not the same as verifying US Citizenship. US citizenship is required from all students to verify their legal presence in the United States.  SC residency verifies that you are a resident of SC for purposes of paying in-state tuition and fees.

Please note that once we receive your SC Residency Application, it may take up to 1 week for review and updating of your bill in our system. 

Contact our SC Residency coordinator at if you have questions or need assistance.

SC State Scholarships

State scholarships are determined by your residency status, so please submit your SC Residency Application early, before you register for classes. It is important that all SC residents (for tuition purposes) submit their residency application as soon as possible once it becomes available, since all students are listed as resident pending until they submit their residency application form online and the information is verified. 

State Laws and Regulations

For more information about the laws and regulations that govern the University of South Carolina's residency eligibility determinations, please view the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education's regulations, or the South Carolina Legislature websiteThese requirements apply to all state-supported colleges and universities in South Carolina.

By state law, legal residency status may not be acquired by an individual who is residing in South Carolina for the primary purpose of enrollment in a college/university.

Documents Types to Establish Intent to Become a South Carolina Resident**

  • Statement of full-time employment;
  • Designating SC as state of legal residence on military record;
  • Possession of a valid SC driver’s license, or if a non-driver, a SC identification card. Failure to obtain this within 90 days of the establishment of the intent to become a SC resident will delay the beginning date of residency eligibility;
  • Possession of a valid SC vehicle registration certificate. Failure to obtain this within 45 days of the establishment of the intent to become a SC resident will delay the beginning date of residency eligibility;
  • Maintenance of domicile in SC;
  • Filing SC income taxes as a resident during the past tax year, including income earned outside of SC, from the date SC domicile was claimed;
  • Ownership of principal residence in SC;
  • Licensing for professional practice (if applicable) in SC.

**Please note that any single indicator may not be conclusive (in other words, possession of one or all of these items does not guarantee you will qualify for the in-state rate).


If you disagree with the decision made by the Residency Officer, you are entitled to request an appeal. Students who appeal residency decisions must provide a letter informing the Residency Officer that they would like to appeal the rendered decision. The letter must include:

  1. A summary of the case (including any extenuating circumstances)
  2. A statement specifying the residency provision under which they are attempting to claim South Carolina as their state of legal residency
  3. Any other documentation requested by the Residency Officer (such as SC driver's license, tax returns, etc.). Please write your VIP or USC ID (included at the bottom of your acceptance letter) on all documents you provide. This number will help the office match them to your record. These documents will be handled in accordance with the University's policies on data security and privacy. Failure to provide the required documents may result in the assessment of Non-Resident Tuition and Fees.

The university's Residency for Tuition Purposes Appeals Committee will be scheduled as soon as all necessary documents are received and the committee members are available to review the details of the appeal.  Any student may appeal a decision to the committee. The committee is bound by the same laws and governing regulations as are applied by the Residency Officer. The only purpose of the committee is to review the facts and details of any case brought before it and evaluate the correctness of the decision made by the Residency Officer. Neither the committee nor the Residency Officer has the authority to waive any provisions of the law or the regulations.

Frequently Asked Questions

To view answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about SC Residency for Tuition Purposes, click here.

To view information on establishing residency once you move to SC, click here

Contact the Office of Admissions

Mailing Address:

University of South Carolina Beaufort
Office of Admissions
One University Boulevard
Bluffton, SC 29909

Phone (843) 208-8055
Fax (843) 208-8290

admissions staff