Epic Adventure Starts Here

Permanent Residency – Attorney or DIY?

  • Permanent Residency – Attorney or DIY?

    Posted by tom-lindsay on June 27, 2022 at 2:37 pm

    A couple of life events recently dealing with health and employment issues have been making us rethink our retirement plans; specifically whether to wait to retire until we are both 67 or 62? It’s looking more and more like we will bail out at 62 and begin enjoying retirement at an earlier age. We want to get out PR out of the way up early on in the process and we have been getting some conflicting advice as to whether to just do it ourselves or to pay to hire an attorney/facilitator?

    We’d appreciate your thoughts, advice and any suggestions as to who to use if that is your suggestion.

    TIA!

    mx-rider replied 1 year, 5 months ago 5 Members · 9 Replies
  • 9 Replies
  • BajaGringo

    Organizer
    June 27, 2022 at 3:11 pm

    Personally I would recommend that you try doing it yourself. I did it by myself, applying at the Mexican Consulate in San Diego when the FM1 replacement first became available back about 10 years ago as I recall. Just make sure to cross all your t’s and dot all your i’s and take everything with you that you think will help your case.

    And make copies of EVERYTHING you plan to take with you.

    Here is some good info to consider:

    Temporary and Permanent Residency in Mexico

    Whether you apply for temporary or permanent residency in Mexico will likely depend on your lifestyle intentions and your level of income or savings.

    When you apply for legal residency in Mexico, you have a choice of applying for either Temporary Residency (Residente Temporal) or Permanent Residency (Residente Permanente).

    Differences between Temporary and Permanent residency

    The most significant difference is that temporary residency permits need to be renewed at least once if you stay more than a year, whereas permanent residency permits never need to be renewed and never expire.

    Temporary residency permits

    Mexico’s temporary residency permits last for between 1 and 4 years. Your first temporary resident permit is always granted for only one year* initially and you can thereafter renew your temporary residency for 1 to 3 more years (for a maximum of 4 consecutive years). At the end of a 4-year period of temporary residency, you can:

    • Apply to exchange the temporary residency for permanent residency (see below); or

    • Allow the temporary residency to expire and enter into a ‘regularization’ procedure to re-apply for temporary residency; or
    Leave the country.

    The financial qualification criteria for temporary residency are lower than those needed to apply for permanent residency and, after holding four consecutive years of temporary residency, you can optionally apply to exchange your temporary residency for permanent residency, usually without the need to prove economic solvency.

    Note that not all temporary residency permits carry permission to work in Mexico; work permissions need to be requested and granted alongside your temporary residency.

    When you have temporary residency in Mexico, you can enter and leave Mexico as many times as you wish and there are no time limits on how long you have to remain in Mexico each year to keep your residency status, although renewals and notifications of changes must be processed in Mexico, in person.

    If you are married to a Mexican national, you are granted two years of temporary residency and after those two years you can exchange this for permanent residency.

    Permanent residency permits

    When you apply for permanent residency on the basis of economic solvency, you don’t have to hold temporary residency before applying for and being granted permanent residency, but:

    • The financial criteria to qualify for permanent residency are higher, and

    • Many consulates require the applicant(s) ‘to be retired’ to apply for permanent residency—even if they qualify economically.

    For those who don’t qualify for Permanent Residency right away, there is a path to exchange temporary residency for permanent residency (see next section below).

    Once permanent residency is granted, your residency card never expires and you do not have to renew your residency status as you do with temporary residency. However, you do need to notify your local immigration office of any change of address, civil status, as well as any changes in employment if you work in Mexico.

    When you have permanent residency in Mexico, you can enter and leave Mexico as many times as you wish and there are no time limits on how long you have to remain in Mexico to keep your permanent residency status; although if you intend to apply for citizenship, you will need to prove you were physically in Mexico for at least one year prior to your application.

    Exchanging temporary residency for permanent residency in Mexico

    People who want to live in Mexico indefinitely but only qualify for temporary residency can apply for temporary residency to begin with and, after four consecutive years* of temporary residency can apply to automatically exchange their temporary residency status for permanent residency in Mexico.

    Near the end of the four consecutive years holding temporary residency, you can apply to exchange your
    Residente Temporal permit for a Residente Permanente permit. The transfer from temporary to permanent residency is undertaken at your nearest immigration office in Mexico with an application procedure and payment of the processing fees. In most cases you do not need to demonstrate your economic solvency when you exchange your temporary residency for permanent residency.

    *If you are married to a Mexican national, you are granted
    two years of temporary residency and after those two years you can exchange this for permanent residency.


    Important note about Temporary Residency to Permanent Residency

    Whether you are overseas or in Mexico, if you’re intending to exchange your current Temporary Residency card for Permanent Residency after having held 4 consecutive years of Temporary Residency status in Mexico, you must not let your residency card expire.

    If you do not renew your temporary residency card before its expiry date, you can opt to enter the regularization process to apply for a new, 1-year temporary residency permit, but you cannot make the exchange from temporary to permanent residency.

    Should I apply for temporary or permanent residency in Mexico?

    Choosing to apply for temporary or permanent residency will depend on whether:

    • You plan to live in Mexico only for a defined (temporary) period and then leave the country; or

    • You are not yet decided about your longer-term plans when you apply; or

    • You intend to stay in Mexico very long term (indefinitely); or

    • You intend to stay very long term (indefinitely) but don’t qualify for permanent residency right away.

    Applying for Temporary residency is the better choice if:

    • You plan to stay in Mexico for a while and then leave; or

    • You want to stay indefinitely but don’t qualify for permanent residency right away.

    If your plans evolve and you decide to stay in Mexico for longer, you can extend your temporary residency (for a maximum of 4 years) and after four consecutive years apply to exchange temporary residency for permanent residency if you want to.


    Applying for Permanent residency is the better choice if:

    You intend to live in Mexico indefinitely and qualify with the higher income or savings / other criteria required for permanent residency.

    Applying for and being granted permanent residency right away negates the need for you to apply for renewals of a temporary residency permit, which translates into less processing time and lower overall costs.

    • tom-lindsay

      Member
      June 28, 2022 at 6:22 am

      We definitely want to go straight for the PR option

  • nashsimpson

    Member
    June 27, 2022 at 5:38 pm

    Some good friends of ours hired a facilitator from the Ensenada area as I recall and she told them it would be quick and easy and wanted 1500 dollars up front. She kept dragging her feet with promises, promises and more promises but wasn’t delivering the goods and finally they got their passports back with a promise to return half their money and they did it on their own. They did have to go back and forth a few times with the consulate but got it done and have their resident visa cards. Never did get any of their money back.

    • tom-lindsay

      Member
      June 28, 2022 at 6:22 am

      That’s what we are afraid of.

  • mx-rider

    Member
    June 28, 2022 at 6:16 am

    Which consulate would you be using?

    • tom-lindsay

      Member
      June 28, 2022 at 6:24 am

      San Diego, although we’ve heard they can be tougher than others. Some have suggested we should try the one in Phoenix as they don’t grind you so hard on every little detail.

      • mx-rider

        Member
        July 1, 2022 at 6:11 pm

        Yeah, I heard that the San Diego consulate office can be brutal when you are trying to process a residency visa. I imagine they are difficult too with temp residency visas as well.

  • bajatraveler

    Member
    June 29, 2022 at 10:55 am

    If we decide to go the permanent resident route, it would definitely be with the help of someone as our Spanish, unfortunately, is not that good. But how does one find a good agent / attorney?

Log in to reply.

New Report

Close

Share to...