Thursday, November 07, 2013

Dealing with Immigration in San Miguel de Allende, This Year

Yup, it has been a yearly affair now for almost 13 years.  Never was it a problem until last year
when I got caught in the change over to the new regulations.  It was a doozy.  It took longer then six weeks because I applied for an FM-2, which until November 1st last year was a permanent residency.
I got the FM-2 on October 31st and it disappeared on November 1~! 

My visa became an Immigrante, not an FM-2.  If I wanted permanente, I had to start over.
Not on your life.

So, this year after that fiasco, I decided to continue with the Immigrante for 3 more years so that I can keep my US plated car, made in Japan, here in Mexico.  I'll worry in three years what I'm going to do
about transportation.  The old "Scarlett syndrome".  I do well in that mode.

Therefore, I forked out 6310 pesos, close to $500 USD for a two year extension last week.  It took me about fifteen minutes to have my photo taken and sign a gazillion forms.  I have a facilitator, my faithful and talented friend, Patty Garcia.  Patty got me through the fiasco last year and every year before that.

I'm now waiting for a call to go and be fingerprinted, wait for the new visa and voila, I'll be done until November 2015.  This is a good thing.

I did not have to prove income to extend the immigrante visa.

Someone who reads the blog and is buying property in Mexico asked me about having money in the Mexican bank versus the US bank and how much it has to be.  Patty's answer was, "Go to the Consulate in the USA where you are going to apply for your visa and ask THEM their requirements.
Each Consulate is substantially the same, but each has some distinctive requirements".  "Those are the requirements that you must follow" 

Okay then, you have the answer from the most knowledgeable facilitator I know.  When I got my first visa all those years ago, I went to the Mexican Consulate office in Houston.  Got the information from the source, went back with the documents the next day and had my visa in 24 hours!  I have no idea if it is still that way.  But, wherever you are, go to yours and get the details.

Then, after you get the visa, you must have your passport and the document stamped when you enter the country either by car or whatever means of transportation that you use.  Then you have THIRTY days to go to Immigration wherever you are moving to reapply for the visa.  Remember THIRTY days from the date you enter Mexico, not 31.

As I write this, I wait patiently for my new visa.  I'll let you know when I get it - probably about six weeks from now, I"m told!

Some things don't get better - it used to cost 1200 pesos for one year and you had the new visa in less then three weeks.  Oh well, patience, patience, patience.
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calypso said...

Anita and I got our permanent residence cards - we have one Mexican Plated vehicle - one U.S. (which we seldom drive)

It was GREAT news to find an opportunity where we no longer have to go back (at least until they change policies again.

As to my illegal truck - I will keep driving it until they take it away from me - then not worry about it ;-)

sparks_mex said...

I bet that new Visa says Temporal ;)

I got one for 2 years until January 2015 and then Permanente !!

Babs said...

Calyso, I will probably adopt the same attitude about the Pathfinder in 3 years. Here in SMA they never bother us about our vehicles.....I'll just drive it til they take it away from me! What a good idea!!! Thanks.
I'll be happy when I'm permanente, if I last that long, ha.

Babs said...

Yup Sparks, that's my plan too!

mcm said...

re, your plan to keep driving your US plated vehicle AFTER you have a Residente Permanente visa -- keep in mind that your insurance WILL NOT BE VALID, even if you continue to pay premiums! Yes, you can play cat and mouse with aduana, and likely get away with it, but if you're in an accident, that could be a serious problem without insurance (eg, staying in jail until you pay whatever costs are assessed).

Babs said...

mcm - That is good information and not even something I had thought about. I would never drive any car, even for a day here or in the USA without insurance.

thanks! I'll doublecheck with my agent.

Anonymous said...

I'm becoming more and more convinced that the Mexican immigration/visa process is a huge make-work program for government workers that will never actually annoy any Mexican taxpayers.

It's a politician's dream come true!

Sorry you are in the meat grinder. If nothing else, the uncertainty must definitely be a drag.


Kim G
Boston, Ma
Where our own city building department is hoping to get a few tips from Mexican immigration.

Babs said...

Well, Kim, I must say it is just about the only aggravation! And for 11 years it was a "piece of cake". I'm sure after the new regs become more settled, it will be simple again. New things always keep people on edge. Other then this, life is so darn tranquil and simple, that I really have no room to complain......

Steve Cotton said...

I am amazed at how time frames vary from office to office. The Manzanillo office has been popping out visas in a matter of days -- even permanent resident visas. Maybe because our office has fewer outlanders to deal with.

The insurance question is what convinced me I needed to regular my Escape or send it back to Oregon. Take a look at your policy. Mine was as clear as could be about exemptions under the policy. Illegal vehicle = no coverage.

Babs said...

All of our applications go through Mexico City.......guess that is the delay. Who knows?

Good to know about the insurance. I have three years left to have a car in the country, so I'm not going to fret over it now.