420 F.Supp. 541 (D.Md. 1976), Civ. A. M-75-691, Moreno v. University of Maryland

Docket Nº:Civ. A. M-75-691
Citation:420 F.Supp. 541
Party Name:Moreno v. University of Maryland
Case Date:July 13, 1976
Court:United States District Courts, 4th Circuit, District of Maryland
 
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Page 541

420 F.Supp. 541 (D.Md. 1976)

Juan Carlos MORENO et al., Plaintiffs,

v.

UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND and Dr. Wilson H. Elkins, President, University of Maryland, Defendants.

Civ. A. No. M-75-691.

United States District Court, D. Maryland.

July 13, 1976

Page 542

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 543

Alfred L. Scanlan and R. James Woolsey, Bethesda, Md., for plaintiffs.

David H. Feldman and Jack T. Roach, Asst. Attys. Gen., Baltimore, Md., for defendants.

Page 544

JAMES R. MILLER, Jr., District Judge.

Opinion and Order

This is a purported class action suit in which the named plaintiffs, Juan Carlos Moreno, Juan Pablo Otero, and Clare B. Hogg, seek declaratory and injunctive relief against the defendants, the University of Maryland and Dr. Wilson H. Elkins, its president. Both sides have filed motions for summary judgment. The named plaintiffs are currently students at the University of Maryland, College Park campus, who reside in the State of Maryland with their parents, upon whom they are financially dependent. Plaintiffs' fathers all hold non-immigrant alien visas issued pursuant to 8 U.S.C.A. s 1101(a)(15)(G) (iv) 1 (G-4 visas). As employees of certain international organizations created under international agreements to which the United States is a party, the plaintiffs' fathers are exempted from state and federal taxes on salaries paid by these organizations. 2

Under policies adopted by the Board of Regents of the University of Maryland effective for any term of the University beginning on or after January 1, 1974, (hereinafter referred to as the "In-State Policy"), students are divided into two classes, i. e., "in-state" or resident on the one hand and "out-of-state" or non-resident on the other, for purposes of determining admission, tuition rates, and charge differentials. Under this policy "out-of-state" undergraduate students are required to pay $1,260 more per year for tuition than "resident" students, as well as $100 more per year for a room. "Out-of-state" graduate students are charged $30 more per credit hour than "in-state" students.

The relevant sections of the "In-State-Policy" are as follows:

"General Policy

"1. It is the policy of the University of Maryland to grant in-state status for admission, tuition and charge-differential purposes to United States citizens, and to immigrant aliens lawfully admitted for permanent residence in accordance with the laws of the United States, in the following cases:

"a. Where a student is financially dependent upon a parent, parents, or spouse domiciled in Maryland for at least six consecutive months prior to the last day available for registration for the forthcoming semester.

"b. Where a student is financially independent for at least the preceding twelve months, and provided the student has maintained his domicile in Maryland for at least six consecutive months immediately prior to the last day available for registration for the forthcoming semester. (Emphasis added).

"2. It is the policy of the University of Maryland to attribute out-of-state status for admission, tuition, and charge differential purposes in all other cases.

"Definitions

"1. A student is financially dependent if he receives half or more than half of his support from another person or persons, or appears as a dependent on the federal or state income tax return of any other person. Conversely, a student is financially independent if he declares himself so, if he receives less than half of

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his support from any other person or persons and if he does not appear as a dependent on the federal or state income tax return of any other person.

"4. A domicile is a person's permanent place of abode; namely, there must be demonstrated an intention to live permanently or indefinitely in Maryland. For purposes of this policy only one domicile may be maintained at a given time. . . . "

There are eight criteria which under the "In-State-Policy" "the University shall take into consideration, but shall not be limited to . . ." in determining whether Maryland domicile has been established. These criteria, applied to the individual upon whom the determination of domicile depends, are whether the individual:

a. Owns or rents and occupies real property in Maryland as his (her) domicile on a year-round basis.

b. Maintains a substantially uninterrupted presence within Maryland for six consecutive months, including those months when the University is not in regular session.

c. Maintains within the State of Maryland all or substantially all personal possessions.

d. Pays Maryland income tax on all earned income including taxable income earned outside the State.

e. Registers all owned motor vehicles in Maryland.

f. Possesses a valid Maryland driver's license, if licensed.

g. Registers to vote in Maryland, if registered.

h. Gives a Maryland home address on federal and state income tax forms.

(Attachment to Defendant's Answer to Plaintiffs' Request for Admissions of Fact, with emphasis added).

The University determined that the three named plaintiffs were not entitled to "in-state" status. The determination was predicated upon a conclusion that the parent on whom each was financially dependent could not be domiciled in Maryland because each was in the country on a G-4 visa. Without success, all three plaintiffs availed themselves of the three-step appellate process provided by the University to students dissatisfied with their residence classification. 3

The pertinent facts with respect to each of the individual plaintiffs are alleged as follows:

"Plaintiff Moreno's father, Mr. Manuel A. Moreno, is a citizen of Paraguay and is the holder of a G-4 visa; he has been employed by the Inter-American Development Bank for approximately fourteen years. Manuel Moreno has owned a home in Maryland for the past twelve years. Plaintiff Moreno's mother, Mrs. Gladys M. Moreno, is a citizen of Paraguay and is the holder of a G-4 visa. Manuel and Gladys Moreno own no property in Paraguay, having sold the house which they formerly owned there in 1960. Manuel and Gladys Moreno have paid all Maryland State and Montgomery County property taxes on their home as well as all state and local retail, motor vehicle, fuel, excise and other taxes applicable to them as required by law. Manuel and Gladys Moreno each hold a Maryland driver's license; their automobiles are registered in Maryland. Manual and Gladys Moreno have not resided anywhere other than in Maryland for the past fourteen years; they have no present intention to reside anywhere other than in the State of Maryland."

Page 546

(Paper No. 1, Verified Complaint, P 16).

"Plaintiff Moreno has lived with his parents since birth. He has lived in the United States since the age of four, has attended primary and secondary schools in the United States without interruption, and graduated from high school in Maryland. Plaintiff Moreno is a citizen of Paraguay; he now holds a G-4 visa. He holds a Maryland driver's license. He has filed United States and Maryland income tax returns for 1973 and 1974. Plaintiff Moreno has not resided anywhere other than in Maryland for the past fourteen years; he has no present intention to reside anywhere other than in the State of Maryland."

(Id., P 18).

"Plaintiff Otero's father, Mr. Rene Otero, is a citizen of Bolivia and is the holder of a G-4 visa; he has been employed by the Inter-American Development Bank for approximately fourteen years. Plaintiff Otero's mother, Mrs. Teresa Bailey Otero, is a citizen of the United States; she is registered to vote in Maryland. Rene and Teresa Otero resided in the District of Columbia from the time of their arrival in the United States in 1960 until 1965, when they moved to Maryland. Rene and Teresa Otero have owned a home in Maryland since 1965 and have resided therein for ten years; they have paid all Maryland State and Montgomery County property taxes thereon as well as all state and local retail, motor vehicle, fuel, excise, and other taxes applicable to them as required by law. Rene and Teresa Otero each hold a Maryland driver's license; Rene Otero's automobile is registered in Maryland. Rene and Teresa Otero own no property in Bolivia. Rene and Teresa Otero have not resided anywhere other than in Maryland for the past ten years; they have no present intention to reside anywhere other than in the State of Maryland."

(Id., P 21).

"Plaintiff Otero has lived with his parents since birth. He has lived in the United States since the age of five and has attended primary schools, secondary schools, and college in the United States without interruption. Plaintiff Otero is a citizen of Bolivia; he now holds a G-4 visa; he has made application to adjust his status to that of immigrant. Plaintiff Otero holds a Maryland driver's license. Plaintiff Otero has filed both United States and Maryland income tax returns in 1972, 1973, and 1974, and he has paid income tax to both Maryland and the United States in each of those three years. Plaintiff Otero has not resided anywhere other than in Maryland for the past ten years; he has no present intention to reside anywhere other than in the State of Maryland."

(Id., P 23).

"Plaintiff (Clare B.) Hogg's father, Mr. Vincent Hogg, is a citizen of the United Kingdom and is the holder of a G-4 visa; he has been employed by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development for thirteen years. Plaintiff Hogg's mother, Mrs. Barbara Hogg, and the Hoggs' daughter Susan are citizens of the United Kingdom. Susan Hogg married a United States citizen in 1973 and adjusted her status to that of permanent resident alien. Vincent and Barbara Hogg resided in the District of Columbia from the time of their arrival in the United States in 1962 until 1970, when they moved...

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