Real Estate & Legal Topics

What is Your Immigration Status in Mexico?

According to a recent immigration census taken by the National Institute of Geography and Statistics and the US State Department, one million Americans are living in Mexico and many do not have legal status.

The majority of Americans residing in Mexico are retired and simply come on a tourist permit and stay without applying for their residency. So far the penalties of overstaying your tourist permit have not been harsh, only small fines as you leave the country, but given the current situation in the US, some fear that Mexico may react and begin to enforce their immigration laws.

It is safe to say there are also many people from all over the world living in Mexico without the proper documents.

It is an easy process to apply for residency, holding it provides you with peace of mind while traveling in and out of the country, or encountering random immigration checkpoints. We recommend visitors wanting to live in Mexico apply for a Residence Visa.


Temporary residence is for foreigners who wish to stay in the country for more than 180 days and up to four years. If you wish to work, you need to apply for permission to work visa.

A Few Benefits of a Temporary Residency Visa

  • Temporary Resident receives a registration number CURP (Clave Única de Registro de Población).
  • Open Mexican bank accounts and legally register an automobile.
  • Avoid traveling out of Mexico every 180 days.
  • Some private hospitals provide a discount to residents.
  • Enter and leave Mexico as you wish.


Permanent Resident Visas are issued to foreign nationals who intend to live in Mexico for extended periods of time and for people who wish to gain Mexican Citizenship.

A Few Benefits of Permanent Residency

  • The right to work.
  • CURP.
  • Apply for free health insurance in Mexico.
  • Ease of a single application and a one-time fee.
  • Allows unlimited entries and exits.
  • Stepping stone to becoming a naturalized citizen.

There are several types of visas: temporary resident, work permit, permanent resident visas and residency through investment. For more information, contact

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