Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Getting an FM3 Is Easier and Easier

It is that time of year again. Time to renew my FM3 which allows me to live in San Miguel de Allende. It is getting easier and easier. On Monday morning we went to the the building you see at the top, El Escritorio Publico which is across the street from th Instituto Nacional de Migración. All I had to take was my passport and my current FM3 card. They took my picture. Asked me some questions so they could type up the paperwork and then gave me the paper to take to the bank to pay the fee for the Mexican Government.

We left the Escrito, got back in the car and drove to the Bank. Now this was the one hitch we had in the whole procedure. The bank we went to no longer collected these funds for the Mexican Government, so we had to drive to another Bank across the street. There wasn't a line and it didn't take but a few minutes to pay the fee.

Back on the Libramiento, the San Miguel beltway, to the Escritorio. He had all our papers typed up. I signed in three places. He put the papers in a folder. We walked across the street to the Migración office, took a number and sat down to wait our turn. The wait was the longest delay but there were two people sitting at the desk who brought in stacks of renewal forms for those Gringos who hire someone else to do this job for them. When it was our turn we went to the desk, turned in our paper and we were out of there...beginning to end....in about 2 hours.

Migración had given us a receipt for the papers and they said we could follow the progress on line at such and such address but our new FM3 card would be ready today....just one day after reapplying. Sure enough, Ned checked on line for it this morning and it was ready.

The immigration laws have changed in Mexico but they are not fully implemented. We had heard that after two years with an FM2 you "might" be eligible for Permanente Inmigrado status. We asked the officer who was helping us. He said that yes, the law had changed but they did not know how it would be implemented and under some circumstances you could apply for Permanente Inmigrado status after 2 years with an FM2 but he had no idea what those circumstances would be. Maybe next year at this time it will be settled and I'll start on the way to becoming a Permanente Inmigrado in Mexico.


Steve Cotton said...

Our Manzanillo office has streamlined the renewal process, but not nearly as much in San Miguel. I need to renew my FM3 next month. Maybe I will be pleasantly surprised.

The Expat Guidebook said...

I renewed my FM3 back in December and yes; it's getting easier all the time. But they still don't know when they are going to implement the new rules, because while they are officially there, they aren't actually in place yet.

I live in Cancun, so things are fairly streamlined here for the gringos/tourists.

I have a friend here who just went through doing his LLC to get his FM2; you automatically get one after starting a company in Mexico. For business owners who pay their taxes and keep their business in good standing for two years, you can indeed apply for permanent resident status after two years, at which point you can get a Mexican Passport. However, I don't know how you can do it so quickly as a single individual, such as a renter or a pensioner on the visa rentista or visa pensianado version of the FM2; it used to be five years and now it's supposedly between three and five depending on what "type" of the FM2 you have.

Otherwise, the FM3s are easier than ever; just show proof of income once every five years and otherwise it's a simple few-hour process of renewal every year as you say, to get your annual card.

Toni said...

I have heared it is more difficult now to renew. I am up in 1 month for my 1st renewl. Heard about new laws and stuff. Hope it goes smoothely.