Home Expat Blogs We Updated the Expats In Mexico Immigration Information

We Updated the Expats In Mexico Immigration Information

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As many developed countries erect more barriers to immigration, Mexico continues to welcome new residents, especially from the U.S. and Canada. I know anecdotally through the many questions I receive from aspiring expats from around the world that there is great interest in moving to Mexico. That is why we updated the Expats In Mexico Immigration information, which can be found under Mexico/Immigration in the navigation bar.

Drawn to Mexico by its democracy, pleasing weather, lower cost of living, easy permanent residency and citizenship policies, the number of expats in Mexico has soared to well over 1 million.

Mexico has become a magnet for immigration aspirants from all over the world. However, many do not know how to apply for temporary or permanent residency in Mexico, obtain a work permit or bring household goods or pets to Mexico.

If you are considering or planning a move to Mexico, our Immigration section will provide you with most of the information you will need for successful immigration to the country. I update the information from Mexico’s National Institute of Migration (INM) when changes are made and policies are updated. We also include links to both the U.S. Department of State and the Consulate of Mexico in San Jose, California for additional information.

However, some applicants have more complex situations and require additional legal guidance. Unfortunately, the bogus or fraud immigration agents or agencies that exist today are only adding to the problems of applicants and creating more confusion.

The immigration process and changing immigration rules often force applicants to hire an immigration consultant. However, not all immigration consultancy services are genuine and registered. There are some fake agents and agencies that mislead visa applicants to make easy money, so buyer beware! Applicants who get trapped by such agents not only lose their money, but also face the delay or denial of their visa application and legal complications, in the worst scenario. Also, you should know that Border Patrol officers are NOT immigration agents.

Here is a quick primer on visas for Mexico:

Tourist Visa

If you are a permanent resident of the U.S. Canada, the U.K., Japan and a few other countries, you are eligible for the FMM form (tourist card) and the process is very simple to enter the country. If you are a permanent resident of any of these listed countries, you will need to go to your local Mexican consulate to request a Tourist visa. The Tourist visa allows you to stay in Mexico for a period of up to 180 days if carrying out any unpaid activities, such as tourism, volunteering, studying or attending business meetings, as long as no monetary earnings are derived from your activity.

Temporary Residency Visa

This visa is for those who plan to live in Mexico for up to four years or plan to acquire a Permanent Residency visa. This visa also gives you the right to work in Mexico, if you petition it. You can also leave and enter the country multiple times. Any applicant on the Temporary Residency visa can apply for a Permanent Residency visa after having lived in Mexico for four years. This visa must be obtained at the nearest Mexican Consulate in your home country before traveling to Mexico. After your arrival in Mexico, you must go to INM within 30 days to obtain your Temporary Resident Card.

Permanent Residency Visa

This type of visa is for those who plan to live in Mexico permanently. It allows you to be employed, employ workers and run a business after registering it with S.A.T (Mexico’s IRS). It is a multiple-entry visa.

By following the link included above to our Mexico/Immigration section, you will find detailed and updated information, and links to U.S. and Mexico government agencies.

If you have an immigration question or need assistance for the immigration process, you can contact me directly at dianac.lawyer@gmail.com.


    • Nancy, Diana’s response: Yes it is different. the tourist card visitors receive IS NOT A VISA, it is an entry format for vacationers. An FMM visa is for people who stay up to six months on business, study, etc…


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