Information on Legal Status Affecting Tuition Levels

The objective of the Office of the Registrar is to ensure that all students are categorized properly and recorded in University records in their best interests for the purposes of university tuition fee determination. 

The following is an excerpt from the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities Operating Funds Distribution Manual dated October 2009.  This information is subject to change by the Ministry at any time. University of Windsor students’ legal status for funding purposes and the corresponding tuition fee status (domestic versus international) level as well as the effective dates of status changes are determined by the Registrar. When necessary, legal status is verified with Citizenship and Immigration Canada.    


A student is eligible to be counted for operating grants if that student:

a) is enrolled at an eligible institution (see Section 2); and

b) is enrolled in a publicly-supported program (see Section 3); and

c) is enrolled in a program that meets the specific eligibility criteria for undergraduate courses/units of study discussed in Section 4.4 (only applicable to undergraduate students); or

d) meets the eligibility criteria for graduate students discussed in Section 4.5 (only applicable to graduate students) and falls into any of the categories outlined below: 

4.1.1. Citizens

A citizen of Canada within the meaning of the Citizenship Act, or a person registered as an Indian within the meaning of the Indian Act. 

4.1.2. Permanent Residents

A permanent resident within the meaning of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act:

a) a person who has been granted "permanent resident" status and has not had that status revoked; or

b) a person who has been approved “in-principle” for permanent resident status in Canada. Evidence of this is a letter which confirms that Citizenship and Immigration Canada has determined that he/she is eligible for immigration to Canada or meets the eligibility requirements to apply for permanent resident status in Canada. Such letters must be dated prior to the enrolment count date and presented prior to the enrolment report due date. Please see Appendix 5 for examples of accepted letters. 

4.1.3. Eligible International Students

The status of all international students who are eligible to be counted for operating grant purposes must be fully documented and valid during the academic period for which they are being counted.*

An international student is eligible to be counted for operating grant purposes if that student falls within any of the following categories:

a) A person who is the dependent (see below, Section 1.1.7 for definition) of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada.

b) A visitor, and his/her dependents (see below, Section 1.1.7 for definition), who is authorized to work in Canada having been issued a work permit.** The following students are excluded from this category:

i. A visitor who is a graduate teaching assistant;

ii. An international student holding a work permit to complete his/her co-op,  internship or medical residency employment;

iii. An international student holding an open work permit for post-graduate work (usually for up to three years of work opportunities upon graduation);

iv. An international student whose spouse or common-law partner has received a work permit as a result of the international student holding a valid Study Permit;

v. An international student holding an “Off-Campus Work Permit”.

c) A visitor who is admitted to and remaining in Canada with official accreditation from the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, who has entered Canada, or is in Canada, to carry out her/his official duties as:

 i. a diplomatic or consular officer;

 ii. or as a Canadian government-accredited representative or official of a country other than Canada, of the United Nations or any of its agencies, of any intergovernmental organizations of which Canada is a member;

 iii. or as a dependent (see below,  Section 1.1.7 for definition) or a member of the staff of any such diplomat, consular officer; representative or official accredited to Canada by the Canadian government;

 iv. or a member of a foreign military force or of a civilian component; thereof admitted to Canada under the Visiting Forces Act or any dependents of such  personnel. 

4.1.4. Protected Persons

 A person, and his/her dependents, who:

a) has been determined to be a protected person, including a Convention refugee or a person in need of protection, within the meaning of subsection 95(2) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act by the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) or the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada. A protected person document issued under section 31(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act or a “notice of decision” issued by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada or by the IRB must be presented.

b) is a refugee claimant who applied to the federal government for Convention refugee status prior to January 1, 1989, and can provide documentation from Citizenship and Immigration Canada to that effect.

* Where the status of an eligible international student changes part way through his/her program of study due to circumstances beyond the student’s control (e.g., the dependent of a diplomat whose parent is reassigned to another country), the student may be reported as eligible until completion of that program, at which time this grand-parenting provision will end. The terms under which such a student is still considered to be in a program are determined at the institutional level.

Documentation must be dated and submitted to the Office of the Registrar prior to the following dates:

  • November 1, for Fall terms
  • February 1, for Winter terms
  • June 30 for Inter/Summer Session 

**Eligible work permits must be closed (employer-specific).


1.1.7. Dependents

Dependents are defined as (refer to section 1.1.8 for definition of ‘dependent child’):

a) a spouse;

b) a common-law partner2

c) a dependent child or the dependent child of a spouse or common-law partner;

d) a dependent child of the dependent child referred to above.


1.1.8. Dependent Child

A dependent child is a child who is a biological child who has not been adopted by a person other than the spouse or common-law partner, or an adopted child;

and who is in one of the following situations of dependency:

a) under age 22 and not a spouse or common-law partner;

b) enrolled continuously at a college, university or other educational institution and dependent substantially on the financial support of the parent since before age 22 or since becoming a spouse or common-law partner if that occurred before age 223; or

c) a person with a disability who has been financially supported substantially by his or her parents, and who is unable to be self-supporting because of the disability.

2 An affidavit signed by both spouses, confirming that they are living together in a conjugal relationship for not less than three years, or that they are living together in a conjugal relationship and are raising any children of whom they both are the natural or adoptive parent, is required to verify their common-law status.

Office of the Registrar
Updated:  January, 2024