Independent vs. Dependent


A dependent student is under the age of 24 and a legal resident of the same state as his/her/their legal guardian. To qualify for in-state status, the student's parent/legal guardian must complete the Request for Reclassification on behalf of the student. 

The guardian is responsible for providing legal ties to the state of Florida and demonstrating an absence of legal ties with any other state. 

Independent student

A student is considered independent if they meet any of the following requirements:

  • 24 years of age prior to the start of the term OR
  • Graduate student OR
  • Under the age of 24 and married OR
  • Under the age of 24 and has a dependent that receives more than half his/her/their support from the student OR
  • A legally emancipated person OR
  • Unaccompanied homeless youth determined by a school district or homeless liaison OR
  • Under the age of 24 AND provides a minimum of 51% of his/her/their own support.  

If the student is under 24 years old, the student must document the source of the financial support and clearly demonstrate that the parent/legal guardian is no longer eligible to claim the student as a dependent for federal income tax purposes.