AB 540/AB 2000

What is it?

The Assembly Bills allow all persons, including undocumented immigrant students, who meet the requirements set forth in Section 68130.5 of the Education Code to be exempt from nonresident tuition in California’s colleges and universities.

When did it start?

On October 12, 2001 California Governor Gray Davis signed Assembly Bill 540 into law.  By January 2002, the law became effective in the California Community Colleges (CCC) and the California State Universities (CSU).  On January 24, 2002 the University of California (UC) Board of Regents adopted AB 540.

Additionally, on September 2014, Assembly Bill 2000 was enacted amending Education Code section 68130.5 to allow additional flexibility in meeting the requirements for the exemption.


Requirements for Eligibility

  • Attended a California high school for three or more academic years,
  • Attained credits earned in California from a California high school equivalent to three or more years of full-time high school course work and attended a combination of elementary, middle, and/or high schools in California for a total of three or more years
  • Graduation from a California high school or attainment of the equivalent thereof, (i.e., GED or Certificate of High School Proficiency) prior to the start of the term
  • Register or be enrolled at a public institution of higher education that is accredited in California
  • Must file an affidavit with the institution stating that the student will apply to legalize his or her status as soon as possible (the affidavit is included in the California Nonresident Tuition Exemption form which is available in the Admissions and Records Office)

  • If a student transfers from different systems (CCC, CSU, or UC), student must fill out a new affidavit
  • Students who are nonimmigrants, other than T or U visa holders, are not eligible for this exemption (i.e. F or B visas)

What is a nonimmigrant?

A person who is seeking temporary entrance into the U.S. and has a residence abroad.

  • Students living outside the state and enrolled in distance education courses are not eligible for this exemption.
  • The student must file an exemption request including a signed affidavit with the college that indicates the student has met all applicable conditions described above. Student information obtained in this process is strictly confidential unless disclosure is required under law.

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California Dream Act

What is it?

It is the name for Assembly Bills 130 and 131.  These bills allow for eligible AB 540 students to apply for financial state aid and institutional scholarships.

Who is eligible for the CA Dream Act?

Students who meet AB 540 requirements are eligible for the CA Dream Act. One of the following immigration statuses must pertain to students to be eligible for CA DREAM Act:

  • Undocumented
  • U-Visa holder
  • Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

Steps to filling out the CA DREAM Act

  • Remember to apply for the CA Dream Act by the March 2nd priority deadline of every year.
  • Access the application at https://dream.csac.ca.gov.
  • Create an account using a username, password an security question. Please keep this information for your records.
  • Males between 18-25 must be registered with Selective Service to be eligible for state student aid. For more info click here.
  • Student must report income and any cash support given by relatives as well as parents’ income if student is considered a dependent.
  • Student (and parent, if you are considered a dependent) must electronically sign the application.
  • Make sure you or your campus submits a GPA verification electronically or paper based form to the California Student Aid Commission.
  • Create an account on www.webgrants4students.org to view the status of your CA Dream Act application.

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Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

Temporary injunction 1/9/18:  On the Regents of the University of California, et al. v. Department of Homeland Security, et al US District Court ordered a halt to DACA termination and issued a temporary order for renewals to be accepted by USCIS. (The government is appealing decision).

  1. No new applications
  2. Renewals w/o criminal record (previous guidelines still in effect)
  3. Injunction is not permanent, it only provides preliminary relief while the case is being litigated
  4. Advance Parole is not mandated

****Highly recommend that individuals consult with attorney

What is it?

“On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that certain people who came to the United States as children and meet several key guidelines may request consideration of deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and would then be eligible for work authorization.”-Department of Homeland Security

Understanding the September 5, 2017 DACA rescission

  • USCIS is no longer accepting initial requests but they will adjudicate initial requests for DACA accepted by September 5, 2017
  • USCIS is no longer approving Advance Parole requests associated with DACA
  • USCIS is only adjudicating DACA renewal requests received by October 5, 2017 from current beneficiaries whose benefits will expire between September 5, 2017 and March 5, 2018
  • Read the 2017 DACA announcement here

DACA eligibility

  • You are under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.
  • Entered the United States of America before the age of 16.
  • Have lived in the United Stated continuously up to present time since June 15, 2007.
  • Were physically present in the United States when applied for consideration of deferred action with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and present on June 15, 2012.
  • Entered without inspection in the United States on June 15, 2012 or your legal status expired as of June 15, 2012.
  • You are a current student, have graduated or received a certificate of completion from high school, received a general education development certificate (GED), or are a veteran discharged honorably from the United States Coast Guard or Armed Forces.
  • You have not been convicted of certain criminal offenses, major misdemeanor, three or more additional misdemeanors, and are not a threat to public safety or national security.

-For more details please visit http://www.dhs.gov/deferred-action-childhood-arrivals

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