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HB 11 poised to codify in-state tuition court decision

This past fall we wrote about a decision from the Federal District Court in Miami regarding the amount of tuition that should be paid by individuals who were born in the United States but whose parents are undocumented immigrants. The decision found certain regulations previously adopted by the state of Florida unconstitutional. One of those regulations pertained to the requirement that these children pay out-of-state rates despite having been born in the country and lived in the state for some time. The court decision achieved a goal that Florida's legislature had previously been unable to.

Though the decision found that these students could not be charged the often much higher rate, there was some concern that perhaps schools would not take the necessary actions to change the tuition rates. Accordingly, just to be safe, another bill was recently introduced to the Florida legislature. The passage of HB 11 would essentially codify the decision of the court.

The dreams of many undocumented immigrants include their children obtaining an education that they were unable to. Accordingly, they have worked with their children to make sure that the necessary grades were attained to ensure acceptance to a college or university. Unfortunately for many, a good high school transcript was not enough. The previous requirement that out-of-state tuition be paid made that dream impossible for many, likely leading many students to not even apply.

The recent court decision and passage of the proposed bill will undeniably open doors to many that were previously closed. Just how many individuals will be affected remains to be seen.

Source: CBS Miami, "Immigrant College Tuition Bill Filed," Dec. 4, 2012

•· Immigration matters can be complex. Our firm handles immigration matters for individuals located throughout the state of Florida. If you would like to learn more about our practice, please visit our Miami immigration page.

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