When someone moves into Ohio, at what point does Ohio law consider them a permanent resident?

Are related terms defined by statute, and if so where? (Is this a part of the Ohio Revised Code, the Ohio Administrative Code, or somewhere else?)

  • 3
    Is there any particular purpose that interested in the residency requirements for? It may affect the answer. I don't know a bunch about Ohio law, but I know that in some states the definition of a resident can vary depending on whether you're talking about voting registration, driver's licenses, in-state tuition, taxation, hunting permits, etc. May 16, 2022 at 19:42
  • @MichaelSeifert - indeed, they want your income tax but don't want to give you in-state tuition...
    – Jon Custer
    May 16, 2022 at 21:05
  • A full answer would explain any differences. May 17, 2022 at 0:30

1 Answer 1


There are 4 main criteria for "becoming a resident": taking a job, signing a lease, buying a home, or enrolling children in school. For tax purposes and applied to individuals, under ORC 5747.01(I)(1) that means "An individual who is domiciled in this state, subject to section 5747.24 of the Revised Code". You would need to hire a tax attorney to figure out when you are or are not subject to what income tax rules of the state. Suffice it to say that the only "when" involved involves meeting a certain criterion. The other thing to note is that the tax definition of "resident" only applies to specific sections of the tax code that refer to being a resident – you may have to pay income tax, but you will not necessarily be entitled to in-state tuition.

For voting, you must have been a resident for at least 30 days before the election in which you intend to vote. This is encoded in the constitution, where the requirement is specifically that the voter "has been registered to vote for thirty days" before voting. You must get your Ohio license, title and plates within 30 days of establishing residency. This comes from a BMV rule pursuant to ORC 4507.01, the statutory part of which simply says

"Resident" means a person who, in accordance with standards prescribed in rules adopted by the registrar, resides in this state on a permanent basis.

"Temporary resident" means a person who, in accordance with standards prescribed in rules adopted by the registrar, resides in this state on a temporary basis.

The voting and license provisions don't "define" residency, they assume that you are at least a resident, then they say that you must have been a resident no more than / less than a certain period to (vote / get a license). Also, to run for the state legislature, there is a constitutional requirement that

Senators and representatives shall have resided in their respective districts one year next preceding their election, unless they shall have been absent on the public business of the United States, or of this State

but this is an additional requirement framed in terms of residency, and not part of a definition of residency.

For in-state tuition, the legislature did devise a definition of "resident"

"Resident" shall mean any person who maintains a twelve-month place or places of residence in Ohio, who is qualified as a resident to vote in Ohio and receive state public assistance, and who may be subjected to tax liability under section 5747.02 of the Revised Code, provided such person has not, within the time prescribed by this rule, declared himself or herself to be or allowed himself or herself to remain a resident of any other state or nation for any of these or other purposes.

In other words, "resident" has its ordinary meaning – you reside (live) there. Complex rules were set forth for tax and tuition purposes to cover the situation where people come and go and the legislature wanted a certain outcome. There is no statutory all-encompassing definition of "resident", and most questions regarding "when" (most notably with the exception of in-state tuition) first require you to be a resident, and then put some other time restriction on your ability to enjoy a benefit.

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