Vlandis v. Kline

Vlandis v. Kline et al.
412 U.S. 441 (1973) |
SCOTUS decided 1973-06-11
Jurisdiction level:

The Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment does not permit a state to deny an individual the opportunity to present evidence that he is a bona fide resident entitled to in-state rates, on the basis of a permanent and irrebuttable presumption of nonresidence, when that presumption is not necessarily or universally true in fact, and when the State has reasonable alternative means of making the crucial determination.

Result: Win
Importance:

Created irrebutible presumption doctrine later used extensively.
Thomas B. Parent, “Tuition Residence Requirements: A Second Look in Light of Zobel and Martinez”, Indiana Law Journal, Vol. 61:287, p. 302: “The real importance of this case lies in the additional guidance the Court provided for future cases by qualifying the above holding. The Court recognized that special problems exist in determining the bona fide residence of out-of-state college students. For this reason, the Court suggested that its decision should not be construed to deny a state ‘the right to impose on a student, as one element in demonstrating bona fide residence, a reasonable durational residence requirement, which can be met while in student status.’ The Court added that “[t]he State can establish such reasonable criteria for in-state status as to make virtually certain that students who are not, in fact, bona fide residents of the state, but who have come there solely for educational purposes, cannot take advantage of in-state rates.” Moreover, the Court drew from the Connecticut Attorney General’s opinion which recognized that, in reviewing a claim of in-state status, the issue becomes essentially one of domicile, and suggested certain criteria to use in determining the intent element of domicile…. In addition to qualifying its holding in this manner, the Court distinguished Starns by pointing out that, under the statute attacked in Starns, a student could rebut the presumption of nonresidence after having lived in the state for one year by presenting other evidence sufficient to show bona fide domicile within Minnesota. Thus, “residence within the state for one year,whether or not in student status, was merely one element which Minnesota required to demonstrate bona fide domicile.” Under Connecticut’s scheme,a student applying from out of state could never quaify as a resident solong as he retained student status. Two Justices, although concurring with the result in Vlandis, refused to go along with this distinction and openly questioned the result in Starns. …. It is thus apparent that… the Court is reluctant to paint with a broad brush in the area of tuition residence requirements and remains somewhat uncertain….”


Law type: Civil
Topic(s): Due process, Education, Residency duration requirements, and Tuition residency requirements
State of origin: CT
Attorneys:

John A. Dziamba (Connecticut Legal Services) argued the cause for appellees. With him on the brief was Douglas M. Crockett.


Others involved: Leonard J. Schwartz filed a brief for the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio, Inc., as amicus curiae urging affirmance.
Organization role: Sponsor

Last modified: 2020-04-07 07:24
Case internal grade: A | Case internal status: OK |
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CASE DETAILS

(The syllabus is not part of the opinion, but is a summary prepared by the court reporter as a convenience.)

APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT

Syllabus

Connecticut requires nonresidents enrolled in the state university system to pay tuition and other fees at higher rates than state residents and provides an irreversible and irrebuttable statutory presumption that because the legal address of a student, if married, was outside the State at the time of application for admission or, if single, was outside the State at some point during the preceding year, he remains a nonresident as long as he is a student in Connecticut. Appellees challenge that presumption, claiming that they have a constitutional right to controvert it by presenting evidence of bona fide residence in the State. The District Court upheld their claim.

Held:

The Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment does not permit Connecticut to deny an individual the opportunity to present evidence that he is a bona fide resident entitled to in-state rates, on the basis of a permanent and irrebuttable presumption of nonresidence, when that presumption is not necessarily or universally true in fact, and when the State has reasonable alternative means of making the crucial determination. Pp. 446-454.

346 F. Supp. 526, affirmed.

From the opinion