Students applying for state-sponsored financial assistance from the state of Delaware must be legal residents of Delaware and U.S. citizens or eligible noncitizens. Applicants must have resided in Delaware for at least one year (12 consecutive months) immediately prior to the application deadline for the financial assistance program to which they are applying.
If requested, you must provide verification of your legal residency in Delaware to the Delaware Higher Education Office.
- Independent students must verify their state of legal residence.
- Dependent students must verify the state of legal residency of their parents.
Whether a student is considered independent or dependent is determined on the basis of the federal government's definition of an independent student. For the 2012–13 academic year, you are an independent student if you answer "yes" to any of the following questions. If you answer "no" to all of the questions, you are a dependent student.
- Were you born before January 1, 1989?
- As of today, are you married? (Also answer “Yes” if you are separated but not divorced.)
- At the beginning of the 2012-2013 school year, will you be working on a master’s or doctorate program (such as an MA, MBA, MD, JD, PhD, EdD, graduate certificate, etc.)?
- Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?*
- Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?*
- Do you have children who will receive more than half of their support from you between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013?
- Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and who receive more than half of their support from you, now and through June 30, 2013?
- At any time since you turned age 13, were both your parents deceased, were you in foster care or were you a dependent or ward of the court?*
- As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, are you or were you an emancipated minor?*
- As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, are you or were you in legal guardianship?*
- At any time on or after July 1, 2011, did your high school or school district homeless liaison determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?*
- At any time on or after July 1, 2011, did the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?*
- At any time on or after July 1, 2011, did the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at risk of being homeless?*
* Talk to a financial aid administrator at your college if you have questions about your status.
To verify your state residency, you must submit a copy of the Delaware Resident Individual Tax Return for the prior year. In addition, you will need to provide copies of two (2) of the following:
Delaware driver's license or Delaware state identification card,
Delaware vehicle registration, or
Delaware voter registration card
The Delaware Higher Education Office may require additional information to verify your residency in Delaware. Failure to provide the necessary documentation will invalidate your application for state-sponsored student assistance.
An out-of-state student who comes to Delaware for the principal purpose of enrollment in a postsecondary program does not establish Delaware residency during the period of enrollment.