California Nonresident Tuition Exemption
Education Code § 68130.5, as amended, commonly known as AB 540


California Nonresident Tuition Exemption Education Code commonly known as AB 540 allows certain students from paying nonresident tuition (higher than resident tuition) and allows them to apply for different types of California Dream Act financial aid.

Students Must Have

  1. Satisfaction of either of the following:
    1. High School attendance in California for three or more years.
    2. Attained credits earned in California from a California high school equivalent to three (3) or more years of fulltime high school course work and attended a combination of elementary, middle and/or high schools in California for a total of three (3) or more years, or a combination of those schools. or
    3. Attained credits earned at a California adult school, or
    4. Attained credits at a California Community College, or
    5. A combination of the schools listed above.
  2. Graduated or will graduate from a California high school, or
    1. Attained a General Education Development (GED), High School Equivalency Test (HiSET), Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC), or
    2. Attained an associate degree from a California Community College, or
    3. Fulfilled the minimum transfer requirements to transfer from a California Community College to a University of California or California State University, and
  3. Will register or enroll in an accredited and qualifying California college or university, and
  4. If applicable, complete the affidavit stating that you will legalize your immigration status as soon as you are eligible, and
  5. Do not hold a valid non-immigrant visa (A, B, C, D, E, F, J, H, L, etc.) *

**If you have Temporary Protected Status or hold a U Visa you are eligible

AB 1899 allows U and T visa holders to also apply for state financial aid. (T visa holders should file a FAFSA, U visa holders should file a CA Dream Act Application)

If you meet the requirements above, you should complete the CA Dream Act Application for financial aid. (A certified GPA is also necessary for Cal Grant consideration.)

Your college is responsible for verifying your AB 540 eligibility. Check with your Admissions Office early in the summer before the Fall Term starts.


  • California Community College Students
  • California State University Students
  • Private College Students
  • University of California Students: University of California (UC) campuses each have their own nonresident tuition exemption application and affidavit forms. Requests are not to be submitted until you have been admitted to a UC campus and have filed both a Statement of Intent to Register and a Statement of Legal Residence. For campus-specific instructions regarding documentation and deadline dates, contact the campus personnel knowledgeable about AB 540, AB 2000 and SB 68 classifications.